Legal Aid

CJS efficiency: solving digital equipment problems at court

PUBLISHED September 11, 2013

Drive to make sure you can work digitally in court

Providers who are prevented from legitimately using digital equipment to work in court buildings are encouraged to email details to the Criminal Justice System efficiency programme (see below).
You will need to include: 
  • your name and the name of your firm
  • date and court where the problem was encountered
  • details of the equipment and the nature of the court?s objection
Issues will then be raised with HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) security management.
They will be asked to check that local courts are following HMCTS policy on the use of digital devices by legal teams in court.
This guidance states ?the use of lap tops (or equivalent ?tablet? machinery?) by legal teams is permitted, but this is limited solely to those teams?.
The use of mobiles phones by professional court users is also permitted in the wider courthouse. They should be switched off and out of sight in the courtroom itself. 

Next steps

Feedback about equipment problems and what is happening to tackle any issues will be fed back to your representative bodies.
Resolving your problems is essential if the CJS efficiency programme is to be successful in delivering on its key objectives of:
  • enabling digital working across the criminal justice system
  • reducing or removing the movement of paper and people around the system

It means that legal teams appearing in court should eventually be able to work from digital case material using laptops and tablet computers which can connect to their own office systems ? reducing unproductive time in court. 

Further information ? to send details of the equipment issue including where and when it happened