Electronic Case Filing
The Case Management/Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) system provides courts the option to have case file documents in electronic format and to accept filings over the Internet.
ECF is the name we use to refer to electronic case filing. ECF allows attorneys and others to file and view documents from their office, home or anywhere they have access to the Internet, 24 hours a day. Documents are automatically docketed as part of the filing process and then are immediately available electronically. (For your filing convenience, review this list of civil docketing events.)
In the Middle District of Alabama, attorneys are not required to file documents directly with the court over the Internet. (Attorneys are, however, required to register for ECF electronic noticing.) To file electronically requires word processing software, a PDF writer, and possibly a document scanner. Case documents are accessible to the public over the Internet using standard computer hardware, an Internet connection, a browser and a Portable Document Format (PDF) reader.
You can register for ECF access by clicking here. This registration allows you to receive electronic noticing, and provides you with a login and password for electronic filing. Please note that only licensed attorneys who are members of our bar may register. Other attorneys must apply for general or pro hac vice admission before they can register. Pro se individuals cannot use the ECF system for filing or notice purposes.
If you have already registered, and need to update your account information, then please log in to the system, and make the necessary changes. You are then to file an appropriate and timely Notice of Change of address in every active case in which you are an attorney of record. The Clerk’s Office cannot update your information for you.
There are no added fees for filing documents over the Internet using ECF; existing document filing fees do apply. Electronic access to court data is available through the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) program. Litigants receive one free copy of documents filed electronically in their cases, which they can save or print for their files. Additional copies are available to attorneys and the general public for viewing or downloading at ten cents per page, with a maximum cost per document of $3.00. Directed by Congress to fund electronic access through user fees, the judiciary has set the fee at the lowest possible level sufficient to recoup program costs.