University of Denver

Eighteen Ways Courts Should Use Technology to Better Serve Their Customers

Principal, Greacen Associates, LLC

Courts are—to a great extent—in the business of customer service. Yet often, their focus when upgrading their technology doesn’t extend beyond their own internal needs. That’s a recipe for disaster in a world where consumers are increasingly getting their needs met digitally and businesses failing to do this are quickly going out of business.

This report provides a path forward to help courts use existing technologies to improve the user experience, particularly for those people who choose to represent themselves.

Among the report’s detailed recommendations are:

  • Ensure court information and services are accessible through smartphones and ensure up-to-date wayfinding.
  • Allow court users to present photos, videos, and other information from their smartphones in court.
  • Enable court users to appear by telephone or video conference.
  • Facilitate easier scheduling of hearings using common digital calendar platforms.
  • Allow online payment of fees and other costs. Create opportunities for users to access forms and other case-related information remotely and simplify the completion and filing of those forms, including electronic filing, and eliminate notarization requirements.
  • Deliver automated court messaging about upcoming hearings or missed events and allow that messaging to help guide users through the process.