Judges have one of the most challenging roles throughout the Justice System carrying out the course of justice. Judges must be on the top of their game each time they step foot in the courtroom because they are the one handing out sentences based on evidence and the jury’s verdict. Keep in mind that the jury finds people guilty or innocent in criminal cases, but the Judge is responsible for carrying out justice fairly and equitably based on that verdict. Many case types are not held before a jury, so the Judge is the sole person responsible for the fate of the prosecution. As such, it’s necessary to have solutions for Judges that make their complicated job a bit easier. Technology can take the brunt work, leaving the Judge free to listen attentively and come to a fair decision.
Digital solutions for Judges are more important now than ever before because of the growing popularity of remote or hybrid courts, along with the massive spike in technology used elsewhere in the Justice System. While it can be treated as a “Keeping up with the Jones” situation, the best course of action is to implement solutions that will meet and exceed the needs of a Judge. There are digitally driven answers to some of the most frustrating questions Judges ask themselves every day.
How can I easily manage digital evidence before, during, and after the trial?
Cases featuring multimedia evidence are becoming more common. Technology is a staple in our daily lives, so naturally, it has also found its way into the courts as evidence. Judges must approve or deny all evidence submissions prior to a trial. Prosecutors and Defense Attorneys can utilize Vault, ImageSoft’s Digital Evidence Management system, to upload files and submit them for approval. Judges can log into Vault and have access to all proposed evidence. From the platform, they can approve or reject the request, determining what files are admissible in court during the proceedings.
Vault continues to work as a digital solution for Judges during a trial. As exhibits are presented, Vault makes it easy to display them from nearly any device. All files can be played back or reviewed in-platform, avoiding a need for a VHS, DVD player, cassette player, and other obsolete playback devices. In addition, Vault can integrate with tools like aiSmartBench, electronic case files, and more. Judges have exactly what they need at their fingertips for a quick and efficient display process during court.
When the trial ends, Judges can utilize Vault to help them search for and organize archived case details and exhibits. That way, they can recall these past experiences when it’s time to sentence a guilty party in the future. All exhibits can be notated on, and organizing files is simple and highly customizable.
What is the best way to manage all my notes and files while on the bench?
One of the most sought-after digital solutions for Judges is aiSmartBench, an electronic bench platform designed to condense multiple tools into a single, user-friendly platform. Evidence, documents, subpoenas, court transcripts, and more can be pulled up and reviewed from the bench. Judges can even look back through archives of past cases to reference sentences, testimonies, outcomes, and other valuable information that can lead them to reaching a fair decision in the presence.
aiSmartBench enables judges to personalize their interface so that it works the way they like to work. This intuitive approach allows judges to focus on the proceedings while looking like a pro at accessing case information using a touch interface. The platform is compatible with nearly any CMS system, and can be configured to display items in the most effective way for each Judge individually. This is not a one-size-fits-all solution because each Judge has different needs before they can make a decision. The platform can display notes, exhibits, digital files, reference papers/cases, and more for a comprehensive solution that puts paper processes to shame.
Is there a way to make signing documents faster and more convenient in between my trials?
When Judges aren’t in the courtroom, they are dealing with dozens of administrative tasks at one time. We’ve come to learn that a large portion of a Judge’s day can be spent signing documents and submitting them. TrueSign offers Advanced Electronic Signatures that can be implemented as part of a CJIS or HIPAA-compliant solution. TrueSign transforms any device into a signature pad, allowing Judges to sign any and all documents digitally in a fraction of the time.
Customers who utilize TrueSign as a digital solution for Judges in the court note that the platform makes it possible to sign documents with just a few clicks in between meetings or hearings. Because there is no travel or paper pushing required, Judges can pull out their phone or laptop in a spare moment and sign several documents in just minutes. As users of TrueSign the Judge will be able to save their digital signature, resulting in a one-click method of filling out subsequent documents. Turnaround will drastically improve, leaving more time in the day for Judges to focus on pressing matters.
How can I get more organized and ensure that everyone is staying up to date on important information?
The Justice System relies on a series of departments working together to get things accomplished. There are very few processes that don’t involve multiple parties due to the sensitive and protected nature of court proceedings. Judges are frequently a last check or stamp of approval on processes, but they also have several they must own from start to finish. There are many tasks in these complex processes that can easily be automated to free up time for staff. Automation and workflow from OnBase by Hyland Software can take over some of the most tedious and repetitive tasks across departments, streamlining them into a process that requires minimal staff member involvement.
OnBase can be employed with existing Case Management Systems to take over tasks that constantly fill up Judges’ to-do lists. Of course, some things require the human touch, but OnBase can help even in those cases. For example, if a document is submitted, an OnBase workflow can send an automated notification to the Judge requesting review and signature. The Judge will not need to incessantly refresh their inbox because OnBase alerts them whenever their attention is needed. OnBase also makes communicating throughout the Justice System a breeze to improve access to information and speed up reply time.
There are many digital solutions for Judges designed specifically to make their complicated job as simple as possible. ImageSoft is proud to work closely with Judges and the Justice System as a whole to provide tools that make a significant difference in how work is done. Judges in various courts can utilize these solutions as a helping hand in their long list of daily tasks. To learn more about how ImageSoft products can help Judges, please visit https://imagesoftinc.com/courts/.