Yesterday the Indiana Courts announced that a new Protection Order E-filing service is now available to individuals, advocates, and attorneys. The service is for adults and children who need protection from domestic or family violence, stalking, sex offenses or harassment. People seeking protection can use the service to now request one from anywhere they can access the Internet, at any time of day, any day of the week.
“The courts have been extremely open and have invited and listened to our input,” said Kerry Hyatt Bennett, ICADV legal counsel, who was part of the team that reviewed the new process before it was implemented.
E-filing is already available in all 92 counties for most case types, and attorneys are required to e-file using one of the state’s certified e-filing service providers. This new e-filing service provider (developed by the Indiana Supreme Court’s Trial Court Technology) complies with the Violence Against Women Act, interfaces with state and federal criminal databases, and is free to use. It is the only service provider for e-filing in adult and child protection order cases.
People seeking protection may still file on paper in the clerk’s office or with assistance from a victim advocate; attorneys are required to e-file in these cases starting December 2. After a request for protection is sought, a judge reviews the case.
“We’ve done what we can to try and make the portal and the process accessible and responsive,” said Caryn Burton, ICADV training coordinator. “However, working with an advocate is always going to be safer and the best practice because of the very particular nuances of how protective orders work and all the factors that can affect the outcome.”
Users of the service have easy access to local advocate phone numbers and locations, and advocates are trained to answer questions and assist with the e-filing process. The Protection Order E-filing service is available at public.courts.in.gov/porefsp and is listed as one of the 12 available e-filing service providers at courts.in.gov/efile.
ICADV will offer an E-filing informational session in the coming weeks for advocates or anyone working with clients needing Protection Orders. More information will follow in our newsletter and on our events calendar.
For media inquiries, please contact ICADV Communications Coordinator Melissa Iannuzzi at email@example.com