I reached out to Dan O’Day, Co-Founder and CEO of ECFX (which automates the delivery of both federal and state court filings) to get his reaction of the Eastern District of North Carolina’s Standing Order 3. Here is his response as well as a “fact sheet” from the company addressing issues raised in the order.
O’Day personally believes that the this is a step in the wrong direction for the Courts. “The real issue has been triggered by documents made accessible by the courts that are incorrectly published and sealed after the fact. The courts have become aware that other some of the automation tools available and made popular for the convenience they offer lawyers, also publish these instantly so they can be accessed immediately by people who are not on the service list. The courts cannot control them like they could in the past. The reality is the courts need to take responsibility for this – however since they are literally the judge of such matters they push the burden out to the lawyers.“
The order does not apply to ECFX for the following reasons:
- We don’t store attorney credentials for PACER accounts. Sealed documents must still be downloaded manually by those with access to the credentials. ECFX does not download sealed documents from PACER.
- Unlike other vendors mentioned, ECFX is not added as an additional recipient on the CM/ECF account.
- Unlike other vendors mentioned in the order, we do no resell or republish case documents and case information that we obtain.
In addition to the above:
- All documents are encrypted in transit and at rest by ECFX.
- Client can enable SSO so we only have access to the your ECFX site via SSO set up by the law firm and cannot access case documents and case information except via the SSO login.
- ECFX and our clients have a broad and mutual NDAs in place.
- ECFX does background checks on all employees and trains them in the proper handling of confidential information.
- ECFX has been through an Information Security review by each of our clients that elect to vet our security before licensing the product.