What’s Going on When I E-File My Proposed Order?

  1. Courts Can’t Sign Orders that are Attached to Pleadings

First, the court cannot sign an order that is attached to a pleading.  For example, if you file a motion to enter and attach your proposed order as Exhibit A to the motion, that whole pleading will be filed in the court’s electronic docket and will not be editable or sign-able.  There is no way for the court to sign that order.

If you want a proposed order to be electronically signed by the court, you should also submit the proposed order through the e-filing system as a separate document so the court can sign it.

  1. E-Filed Documents Go Through Multiple Steps Before Getting to Courts

When an attorney e-files any document, it goes into a queue for the district clerks office.  All e-filed documents go into one long queue all together, whether they are pleadings, proposed orders, etc.  Each court has two civil clerks.  Only that court’s clerks review the e-filings for that court.

During business hours, each court’s clerks start at the top of the list of e-filed documents and work each item in order, one at a time.  On an average day, the clerks may arrive in the morning to a 6-8 page long list of e-filed documents.  On a normal day, it can take the clerks about 2-3 hours to process all the documents.  So, for example, if you e-file a proposed order after business hours, it should be available to the court by around noon on the next business day.  Likewise, if you e-file a pleading after hours, it may not show up in the court’s electronic docket until about noon the next business day.  It could be earlier or later in the day depending on how many e-filings the clerks are dealing with that day.

If something is important or urgent, the attorney can call that court’s clerks and get the e-filing pushed through.  The clerks will then locate that document in the queue and process it out of order.  Contact info for each court’s clerks is available on the district clerk’s website: