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The long-awaited implementation of key digital infrastructure to advance the administration of the judicial system in The Bahamas is finally here. 

Since the official Gazette publication notice on 6 September 2023 of the imminent arrival of the Supreme Court (Electronic Filing) Rules, 2023 for the electronic filing of court documents and the online payment of filing fees, litigants, members of the Judiciary, Registry staff, and attorneys alike have anticipated the 5 February 2024 start date.

Now, with the launch of the new system, usage of digital processes for efficacious litigation in The Bahamas has effectively advanced from concept to reality.

Practically speaking, the Judiciary of The Bahamas has launched a website for the electronic filing of documents in proceedings before the Supreme Court. This platform enables parties to electronically submit documents that commence, advance, and resolve proceedings at any time during, or outside normal operating hours of the Registry of the Supreme Court – including weekends and public holidays.

Further, the ability to electronically file large bundles of documents through the platform combined with a cashless online payment system promises to make the case management system more efficient.

In Chief Justice Sir Ian Winder’s address at the Opening of the Legal Year on 11 January 2024, he optimistically foreshadowed that the implementation of the new electronic filing system would, “have a transformative effect on our judicial system and the way records are kept and viewed.”

Aligned with the Judiciary’s objectives of modernizing the legal process, electronic filing is also expected to ensure, through technological advancements, greater accessibility to justice for all within the jurisdiction.