E-Filing in the Federal Court

The Federal Court has issued a revised Notice to the Profession on electronic service and filing of documents. Starting on March 1, 2013, the Federal Court will be using its own system for electronic filing, replacing the LexisNexis system used since 2009.

The Notice to the Profession (PDF) and Amended Annex (PDF) have an effective date of March 1, 2013. The Notice is similar to the Notice to the Profession from 2009 but does have some important differences.

  • “A document shall not be served by electronic service unless the recipient has served their Notice of Consent to Electronic Service” in the form provided in the Annex. The party shall also include its email address in documents filed with the Court. Previously, putting an email address in a document filed with the court was sufficient to indicate consent.
  • Only PDF format documents are now acceptable for filing. Previously PDFs and TIFFs were acceptable.
  • Documents are to be filed using the e-filing application on the Federal Court website rather than using the service at LexisNexis.
  • Documents filed electronically are deemed filed at that time in the Eastern time zone. Previously documents could be filed up to midnight Pacific Time to be considered filed that business day.
  • Tariff fees must be paid by contacting the Registry and cannot be paid online. Documents are not considered filed until the fees have been paid but there are no transaction fees for using the electronic system. Previously, tariff fees could be paid online at the time of filing.

For comparison purposes here is the 2009 Notice to the Profession and the 2009 Annex.

Hopefully, this is another step towards an electronic registry that will allow the Court and users to access documents filed with the court electronically. This week’s change appears to have been driven by LexisNexis terminating its e-filing service which had been in place since 2009.