Judicial Branch, State of New Hampshire
| For Immediate Release:
May 18, 2017
Court system to start electronic filing for Estates
CONCORD, N.H . – The Judicial Branch announced today that it will begin electronic filing for all new estate cases at select probate division locations next week. The locations are Brentwood, Concord, Dover and Laconia on May 23, followed by Haverhill, Keene, Lancaster, Nashua, Newport and Ossipee on June 14.
“This is the third case type the court system has brought on-line since 2014,” said Jackie Waters, NH e-Court Program Director, “We are confident that the launch of estates will go as well as small claims and guardianships.”
Waters noted that the benefits being realized from e-Filing are already quite measurable, including, “providing speedier access to justice by reducing court case processing time, reducing the need for costly paper copies, postage, and trips to the clerk's office and offering the convenience of 24/7 online case filing and automated notifications to case participants.”
To help the transition from paper to e-Filing go smoothly, Waters said the circuit court recently participated in a large continuing legal education event at the NH Bar Center and held regional training sessions for estate attorneys and their staffs. For individuals who may represent themselves through the estate process, the court has created and included in its TurboCourt application nearly two dozen recorded presentations by Judge David King, the Deputy Administrative Judge for the Circuit Court who has more than 27 years of probate experience. In addition, the public may view a demonstration on Estate Electronic Filing that can be accessed through the Electronic Services section of the Judicial Branch website: https://www.courts.state.nh.us/nh-e-court-project/electronic-services.htm
Judge King added, “We are very excited about electronic filing of estates. Of all case types, this one lends itself the best for centralized processing and will allow for more efficient service for those needing access to the court for an estate administration. We have worked very hard to provide live trainings and more on line training materials which are available to the public on our website.”
Waters added, “e-Filing for additional case types in the supreme, superior and circuit courts will be implemented incrementally over the next few years. Ultimately, the Judicial Branch intends to conduct the majority of court business electronically with self-represented filers, lawyers and other justice partners.”
The Judicial Branch began on-line offerings, called the NH e-Court Project, with two small claims pilot courts back in July of 2014. Now all 32 district division locations, that deal with approximately 10,000 small claims cases every year, are exclusively electronic. Guardianships filed in the Family and Probate Divisions of the Circuit Court followed in 2015 with pilot programs and then went state-wide in January 2016. Both programs are operating successfully.