At its May 8, 2001 Administrative Conference, the Supreme Court considered and approved a proposed set of principles and standards to govern the posting of trial court decisions on the Internet. These principles and standards had previously been endorsed by the Judicial Council at its February 28, 2001 meeting.
There are three fundamental principles underlying the policy decision to permit the posting of trial court decisions on the Internet. First, posting decisions on the Internet is not mandatory. Second, all parties should be made aware, at approximately the same time and in the same way, that the decision will be available on the Internet. Third, any party may receive a hard copy of the decision on request.
The Court-approved standards governing the posting of trial court decisions on the Internet are as follows:
Posting of trial court decisions on the Internet is not mandatory but something each judge may choose to do in all or selected instances.
The court must advise all parties in writing that the decision will be posted on the Internet for a period of six weeks.
The court must notify all parties in writing that a hard copy of the decision is available upon request. Such notice is to be given at the time the parties are first informed in writing that there will be an Internet posting.
The Judiciary’s web site will prominently display a disclaimer stating that the decision is made available for the convenience of attorneys and litigants, and that the decision has not been approved by the Committee on Opinions and thus, unless and until it is so approved, may not be cited as legal precedent, pursuant to R. 1:36-3.
Richard J. Williams
Administrative Director of the Courts
Dated: June 27, 2001