In cases where eFiling is mandatory or permissive, courts in California typically require legal professionals and self-represented litigants to electronically file legal documents with them using an electronic filing service provider, or EFSP. EFSPs are expected to follow proper procedural requirements in a timely and accurate manner, otherwise, their client’s hearings could be delayed, or worse, their cases could be jeopardized.

 

What is an EFSP?

An EFSP is an Electronic Filing Service Provider that has been authorized and certified by a court, or the court’s technology provider, to integrate its software with the Court’s Case Management System (CCMS) or Electronic Filing Manager (EFM) to transmit and receive data, legal documents, and payments on behalf of end users – law firms, corporations, and the public at large.

 

EFSPs offer varying degrees of services, technological capabilities and expertise, including the number of court eFiling integrations, customer support, and breadth of litigation support services. It is critical to choose one that can mitigate risk while driving your firm’s innovation forward.

In this buying guide, you will learn six important factors to keep in mind when evaluating an EFSP and finding the right one for your organization.

 

#1: Service Performance

  • Has processes and technology in place that maximize eFiling court acceptance
  • Returns court-stamped documents and proofs according to the company’s Service Level Agreements on a consistent basis
  • Shares performance metrics with customers such as eFiling Turnaround Times, Serve Success Rates, User Behavior and Order Data

Why It Matters: An EFSP that delivers reliable and transparent litigation support services ensures your filing and serving needs will be well-supported.

 

#2: Domain Experience & Expertise

  • Possesses deep knowledge of CA state & local court rules, industry eFiling systems, and eFiling procedures
  • Has several years of experience in your particular geographic location
  • Offers complementary services and expertise in other areas such as courtesy copy delivery, records retrieval, and court research

Why It Matters: Where you are eFiling matters, and an EFSP that’s experienced in your area’s specific court rules and policies will be able to better serve you.

 

#3: Customer Support

  • Offers multiple ways to contact customer support such as live chat, email, and phone
  • Provides expert review of all documents to ensure proper formatting, filing, and more
  • Delivers regular updates on the status of your legal documents
  • Partners with clients and focuses on long-term client success by continually earning client trust in every interaction

Why It Matters: An EFSP that makes customer support a top priority ensures your documents will be filed & served correctly and reachable when you need it.

 

#4: Future-Ready Technology & Software Capability

  • Is integrated with all eFiling courts, not just a few of them
  • Provides an intuitive portal that is easy-to-use and delivers court-stamped documents and proofs of service back quickly and reliably
  • Delivers custom reports and analytics
  • Has the ability to integrate with accounting, practice management systems and more, to automate legal workflows and leverage data

Why It Matters: An EFSP that delivers more than just an eFiling portal, but also can leverage data, insights, and integrations to automate and better run your business means it can support you now and well into the future.

 

#5: Billing Processes

  • Has clear and timely billing procedures
  • Offers a seamless payment process tailored to a customer’s needs
  • Provides in-depth itemized invoices including available payment methods, amount owed, unique invoice reference numbers, and more
  • Answers any outstanding questions regarding service and court fees

Why It Matters: Detailed invoices and timely billing from an EFSP delivers greater cost visibility and control for your firm.

 

#6: Social Proof & Industry Reputation

  • Has a proven track record of customer success and satisfaction
  • Shares client testimonials on website and social platforms
  • Has industry recognition from legal professionals and organizations who have partnered with the EFSP
  • Offers case studies that showcase the EFSP’s former work

Why It Matters: Positive reviews from customers and other legal professionals prove an EFSP’s ability to provide reliable services.

 

Let’s Get Started

Now that you know what to look for in an EFSP, you’re ready to begin your search. For those needing to deliver legal documents fast and reliably, Rapid Legal is here to help. Create an account and start the eFiling process with us today.