(A) Electronic Filing Permitted. Any document to be filed in an action proceeding before the Cleveland Municipal Court may be filed with the Clerk electronically, except as otherwise provided for in this rule. Such filing shall be in a digitized format specified by the Clerk pursuant to the Clerk of Court’s electronic filing procedure, this Court’s Local Rules of Practice and Procedure, and any administrative order(s) regarding electronic filing. The Clerk of Courts is directed to accept any paper or electronic filing that is presented. However, the Court may strike such filing if it is found to be in contravention of this rule.
(1) Electronic Filing of Pleadings. Parties may file any pleading in paper form or electronically. If filed in paper form, the Clerk will scan the document into an approved electronic format promptly upon receipt.
(2) Format of Electronically filed (e-filed) Documents. All electronically filed documents shall be formatted in accordance with the applicable civil, criminal, traffic, and local rules governing formatting of paper filings.
E-filed documents, including attachments, shall be filed in searchable (but not editable) PDF format. External electronic links, to material outside the filed document, are strictly prohibited. Internal links to other parts of the same filing are permissible.
(3) Documents Filed Under Seal. Documents filed under seal shall not be filed electronically or scanned by the clerk into electronic format nor uploaded to the court’s case management system. The Clerk shall maintain all documents filed under seal in this Court in paper form only.
(4) Scanning and Uploading Paper Documents. Except for documents filed under seal, any document filed in paper form will be scanned and uploaded to the clerk of court’s e-filing system. The uploaded electronic document shall constitute the original document.
(B) Date and Time of Electronic Filing. Any document filed electronically shall be considered as filed with the Court when the transmission to the Court’s authorized electronic filing system is complete. An electronic filing may be submitted to the Clerk twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week. Any document filed after 11:59 p.m. in the time-zone then applicable to the court (either Eastern Standard Time or Eastern Daylight Savings Time) shall be deemed to have been filed at 8:30 a.m. on the next Court business day. Any document filed on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday shall be deemed to have been filed at 8:30 a.m. on the next Court business day.
(1) Rejection or Acceptance of Electronically Filed Documents. The Clerk shall reject any filing that: (a) is not signed by the party; (b) is not in a digitized format approved by the clerk; (c) is not accompanied by a required payment; or (d) requires a judge’s signature.
The Clerk will notify the filer when a filing has been accepted or rejected for docketing and filing in the court’s case management system. Each document filed will receive an electronic stamp containing the date and time the filer transmitted the document to the court’s authorized electronic filing system as well as a unique confirmation number of the filing. If the Clerk rejects or otherwise cannot successfully process a filing, it will not receive a file stamp or confirmation number.
(2) Corrective Filings. To retain the original date and time of filing, a corrective filing may be resubmitted to the Clerk within one business day after notice of the rejection is given sent to the filer. A corrective filing submitted after the one day period expires will be considered a new filing.
(3) System or User Filing Errors. If a party attempts to file a document electronically and the document is not accepted for docketing and filing in the Court’s case management system because of an error in the transmission of the document to the electronic filing system, the Court may, upon satisfactory proof, enter an order permitting the document to be filed nunc pro tunc to the date it was sent electronically.
(4) Fees. Normal filing fees and case deposits will be collected via user credit card or debit card, or such other method as may be approved by the Clerk, at the time the document that requires such a fee or
deposit is filed.
(C) Service. Service of documents filed electronically shall be accomplished in the manner prescribed by the Civil Rules. (Civ. R. 4 and 5).
(1) Time to Respond or Act. Whenever a time period is measured from the time after a document is filed, the time will be measured from the date the electronically filed document is deemed to have been filed.
(D) Maintenance of Source Documents. The person filing a document electronically shall maintain an exact copy of the source document upon which the electronic filing was based, either in an unalterable electronic format or on paper. The filing person shall retain this source document until final disposition of the case and through any appeal period. The filing person shall make the source document or a facsimile thereof available for production at the request of the court, the Clerk, other counsel or parties representing themselves.
(E) Signatures of Parties and Counsel. The signature of an attorney or a party on a document that is filed electronically shall be represented with a conformed signature of “/s/ (name).” The conformed signature on an electronically filed document is a legal signature for purposes of the signature requirements of the civil and criminal rules of procedure, the rules of superintendence, and any other law, and will be considered the signature of the person it purports to be for all purposes.
(1) Multiple signatures. When a stipulation or other document requires two or more signatures, the filing party or attorney will confirm in writing that the contents of the document are acceptable to all persons required to sign the document. The filer will indicate the agreement of all necessary parties at the appropriate place in the document, usually, the signature line(s). If it is established that the documents were transmitted without authority, the court shall order the filing stricken.
(2) Signature of Third Parties. Documents containing signatures of third parties, including signatures of notaries public, shall be scanned as an image and filed electronically. The filing party shall retain the original document in paper form until final disposition of the case and through any appeal period. The filing person shall make the original document available for production and copying at the request of the Court, the Clerk, other counsel, or other parties representing themselves.
(F) Public Access to Electronically Filed Documents. Members of the public may obtain copies of or review electronically filed documents at the office of the clerk of courts in accordance with the procedures established by the clerk. Public access to electronically filed public documents will be available via the internet website of the Court in accordance with the court’s rules regarding privacy and confidentiality and this court’s administrative orders as may be applicable.