Electronic filing can be an overwhelming experience. To help assist you with your filing, here are some of our frequently asked questions new filers ask to help you file quicker and easier. This information covers the states of California, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, and Texas.
For Cook County, IL e-filers, there’s an extra section at the bottom to read.
The Court Filing Fees, Court Service Fee(s), Court Convenience Fee, and Provider Service Fee comprise your e-filing costs.
- The Court Filing Fees auto-populate from the court based on the document types you select.
- The Court Service Fee tends to be the Odyssey eFile EFM Fee of $3.50, but can vary state to state. Also some courts may charge a technology fee, transaction fee, or other associated fees. If they do, Those fees will be listed in the Service Fees portion in the Filing Fees section of your filing.
- A Court Convenience Fee of around 2.75 – 3.5% (depending on the county) is part of your filing so the court can recoup the costs associated with using a credit card. Filers using an echeck can expect a .$25 to $1 Court Convenience Fee instead depending on the state and court.
- We also add our Provider Service Fee to the filing.
While this website does not have the required forms you will need, you can find them at each county’s official court website.
While our support team is able to assist you in using this e-filing application to submit your documents to the court electronically, we are not able to assist with legal guidance or provide legal advice, with completing court forms or formatting court documents, and in specifically directing what options or values should be selected as you submit your filing. Should you have any questions related to these items, we recommend you consult an attorney.
The court requires almost all documents to be a PDF. We automatically convert most native file formats (i.e. Word, WordPerfect, JPG, PNG, GIF, TIF) into the Court’s preferred Adobe PDF format, upon upload.
You need to create your account if you have not already done so. Then you will add a payment account for you court fees. Learn more
What do you need to do, Initiate a New Case
or File on an Existing Case
Initiate a New Case
If you’re going to file on a new case (meaning you do not have a case number), you will need to Initiate a New Case from the main dashboard. Learn more
File on an Existing Case
If you’re going to file on an existing case (meaning you have a case number), you will need to File on an Existing Case from the main dashboard. Learn more
If you find you’re having trouble locating a case, here’s a couple of tips. (For adding a case in Cook County see below in their section.)
- Don’t select the specific court. Instead of “Merced-Merced-Probate” simply select “Merced” to search all court divisions / locations
- If your case number appears to have spaces or dashes, trying entering it without the spaces or dashes … instead of 15PR 00268 or 15PR-00268 try simply 15PR00268.
The list of cases you see available in the Case field is prescribed by the Court. If you don’t see the specific case you are looking for then you’ll need to select the case that most closely matches. If you do not see one that works for you, then you will need to reach out to the court to advise.
The list of documents you see available in the Document Type field is prescribed by the Court. If you don’t see the specific document type you are looking for then you’ll need to select the document type that most closely matches, or is somewhat generic in nature. If you enter some of the Document Type name in its form field, you will filter your choices down (ie. type ‘Petition’ to see petition choices).
After making your selection, you can type the true document title in the document description field.
Some courts provide an option like “Other”, “Other Document Not Listed” or “Document – Other” which may work for you as well.
The courts impose a 25mb file size for PDF documents, and a 35MB limit for the entire filing. To reduce or compress the file size of PDFs larger than 25mb, you have some options.
When e-Filing a document, you may indicate that it is signed by the attorney using an electronic signature in place of a scan. This can help save you time as it avoids the need to print out a document, sign it, and then scan it again to e-File. For the typical electronic filing, you may sign your document by placing “/s/” followed by your printed name on the document signature line.
To replace a document, click the Edit button to the right of the document, then click Replace.
Your filing fees are auto-populated from the court based on the document types you select. In addition, things like a court reporter fee might be listed in the Optional Services drop down in the Security and Optional Services section of your filing.
To create a waiver payment account, click Settings at the top of the screen, then select Payment Settings from the list on the left. Next, you will click Add a Payment Account on the right side of the screen. Give the account a nickname, then select the account type as ‘Waiver.’ When a waiver is necessary for filing, choose this for the payment option instead of the credit card on file.
In the Security and Optional Services section, there is a drop down titled ‘Optional Services’ the court reporter fee and many other optional fees are located there if the particular document offers any optional fees.
In the Security and Optional Services section, courts will ask you to give your document(s) a security level. Most times your choices are public or confidential. You will need to pick something from the choices that particular court offers for that document type. While many people choose the public option, others choose confidential if there is sensitive information they do not think should be public.
A service contact is someone you can attach to your filing in order to send an electronic service notification to them (i.e. e-service). Service contacts will remain attached to the case so that you may continue to serve them in the future, or others who file on the case may serve them as well.
The court receives your envelope the moment you click the Sign and File button. It will be ready for the filing clerk as soon as the documents all upload. At the bottom of the filing in the ‘Review and Submit’ section of your pending filing, the date and time the court received the filing will appear there.
Depending on the court, it can take as little as a minute, to a few hours, to a full business day. If it is taking longer than that, the court may be having a backlog they are working through. If you are concerned about the status, the best thing to do is contact the court directly and provide them the envelope number on your filing.
You will receive an email from the court when your filing is accepted. You can also click on the Filing Status tab on the left from the main dashboard to see the status of your filings.
E-filing hours are 24/7, but you need to check the local rules of your court to see when their deadline is for receiving credit of having your submission filed for a particular day. The courts will review the filings during normal business hours.
If your filing is still pending, and the filing clerk has not begun reviewing your documents, you can click on the Filing Status
tab on the left, then click the Filing ID
of the filing you wish to cancel to open it. Then, click the cancel filing link in the upper right.
Once your filing is accepted, you can click on the Filing Status
tab on the left, then click the Filing ID
of the accepted filing to open it. You should see a “View File Stamped Version” link on the right hand side of each document listed.
We have noticed that certain documents are being returned without file stamps/signatures. More often than not, it is because the document type that was submitted does not automatically receive a file stamp. In these instances, the clerk would manually apply the stamp, but most likely did not. We recommend reaching out to the court to have them apply the stamp, as we have no ability to provide one.
Signed orders are not distributed back through the e-filing system. The Court will either email it to your or send it by US mail depending on the county you filed in.
When submitting a filing, some courts allow you to request certified copies. If they do, you’ll be able to request them from the Optional Services dropdown in the Security & Optional Services section.
If you have already filed your documents or the court does not allow for certified copies to be ordered through the e-filing system, obtaining certified copies must be done through the court or an attorney service.
If you notice that a charge appears twice for a single filing it is because the payment system for those fees has authorized the payment twice. The system does this in order ensure that your payment can be processed once the filing is accepted.
The court does not charge for rejected filings. When you submit your filing the court does a pre-authorization on your card for the filing fees. If the filing is rejected, then the court will not settle that pre-authorization and it will eventually fall off your card. The time it takes to fall off can range from 1 to a few days depending on your banking institution. When rejected filings occur, and you “re-submit” your filing, the court does another pre-authorization. Once accepted, this is the fee that will be settled.
You do not need to start a new filing if your original is rejected.(If the filing is partially accepted, you will need to start a new filing to fix the rejected document.)
You can click on the Filing Status tab on the left, then click the Filing ID of the rejected filing to open it. From there, you can edit, replace, or delete any document. Then, review all sections for accuracy, and if it’s good, click the Sign and File button to resubmit the filing to the court.
Cook County, IL e-Filers
Yes. Cook County requires Pro Se’s to enter 99500 for a Cook County Attorney Code. You must do this in the Cross Reference part of Section 1. If you do not enter a Cook County Attorney Code, the filing clerk may reject the filing without looking at the rest of the filing.
To add a Cook County case to your account you need to make sure you select the correct court and format your case number correctly.
Motion Spindling is a term that the clerk within the Cook County Circuit Court uses to set a motion for a hearing date. Once your completed filing is pending
with the court, you can request a hearing date. In the Cross Reference part of Section 1, you need two (2) rows to spindle; one for your Cook County Attorney Code and another to select your motion type.
This video demonstrates the process of starting a brand new case in the Illinois Courts.
This video demonstrates how to e-file a new document on an existing case.
The following case types, grouped by division, are currently available for e-filing in Cook County Circuit Court as of April 1, 2018. Check back frequently for updates to available case types.
The following special instructions guide filers through the process of e-filing in the Cook County Circuit Court. Please check back often for updates.
The eFileIL e-filing system integration with the Cook County case management system is ongoing, and not yet perfect. In the meantime, please keep in mind the following guidelines and workarounds related to case searches, date selection, and the use of case cross reference numbers.