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SDNY ECF System Down and Updated Practices for Judge J. Paul Oetken

February 16, 2012

Subject: SDNY ECF System Down and Updated Practices for Judge J. Paul Oetken

Please be advised the following notice has been posted on the courts web site with regard to the ECF system being down. We have also been asked by the clerks office to point out the courts procedures for when their system is down. They have also asked us to mention a few additional items they feel that could use a refresher.

NOTICE: SDNY ECF Service Interruption Notice for Wednesday, February 22, 4:00 AM-8:30 AM. You will be unable to view or file documents

Technical difficulties may prevent you from filing electronically. Such difficulties may be related to the Court's ECF computer system or they may be related to your own computer.

A Filing User whose filing is made untimely as the result of a technical failure may seek appropriate relief from the Court (SDNY ECF Rules & Instructions, section 11).

If a technical failure prevents you from filing electronically, follow the steps below:

  1. Do not attempt to file paper documents in ECF cases except for emergency filings (eg. Temporary Restraining Order);
  2. If the Court's ECF system is out of order you should electronically file your document as soon as the system is restored;
  3. If you missed a filing deadline when the ECF system was out of order, attach a statement to your electronic filing explaining how the interruption in service prevented you from filing in a timely fashion;
  4. If the problem concerns the Filing User's own equipment or Internet Service Provider (ISP), and the Court's ECF system remains in service, the Filing User may use the document scanners at the ECF Help Desk in the Clerk's Office to file electronically. Bring your paper documents and your SDNY ECF password (SDNY ECF Rules & Instructions, section 23.8).

What can you do when the ECF system is unavailable? You can start a new civil action by filing paper documents at the courthouse during regular office hours, and you can email stipulations and proposed orders to the Clerk for the Court's consideration.

Questions concerning Electronic Case Filing (ECF) may be directed to the ECF HELP DESK at (212) 805-0800, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 AM to 7:00 PM.

Section 7. Retention Requirements

Documents that are electronically filed and require original signatures other than that of the Filing User must be maintained in paper form by the Filing User until one year after all time periods for appeals expire, except that affidavits, declarations and proofs of service must be maintained in paper form by the Filing User until five years after all time periods for appeals expire. On request of the Court, the Filing User must provide original documents for review.

Section 8. Signatures

8.2 Electronically filed documents must include a signature block and must set forth the name, address, telephone number and e-mail address all in compliance with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Local Civil Rule 11.1. In addition, the name of the Filing User under whose log-in and password the document is submitted must be preceded by an “s/” typed in the space where the signature would otherwise appear.

8.5 Documents requiring signatures of more than one party must be electronically filed either by: (a) submitting a scanned document containing all necessary signatures; (b) representing the consent of the other parties on the document; (c) identifying on the document the parties whose signatures are required and by the submission of a notice of endorsement by the other parties no later than three business days after filing; or (d) in any other manner approved by the Court.

Judge J. Paul Oetken

Judge J. Paul Oetken has recently updated his individual rules. If you have any cases before him, please download a copy and forward them to the attorneys working on the cases: <<details>>

CourtAlert National Business Development Alert and CourtAlert for Pacer help spot Forum Shopping:

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With our National Business Development Alert a firm is notified when such litigation commences. The firm can then stay one action pending the decision of the other, thus saving the effort of redundant litigation and legal fees. In another example, the client was able to stop a case in SDNY because a decision was already rendered in a suit brought in another jurisdiction with identical parties and case issue (the decision was in the firm's favor).

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Sometimes a plaintiff subscribes to the "deep pocket theory" and sues countless parties. Catching these types of litigation at the beginning is an important way to avoid unnecessary expenses for a defending party.

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CourtAlert News items published this week:

2/10/2012 - NYS Supreme/NY County Term Sheet II, 2012, Court Announcement , <<details>>

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