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Frequently Asked Questions About the Transition to PACER

Transition to PACER

When will the Court make the transition to the PACER System?

  • The Court is scheduled to make the transition to PACER on October 1, 2013.  Announcements regarding the transition will be placed on the Court’s website at www.cit.uscourts.gov and the Court’s CM/ECF Login page.  Notices will also be sent to all registered CM/ECF Users, CM/ECF Filers, Confidential Information Filers and attorneys admitted to the Court via email.

What is the difference between the CM/ECF System and the PACER System?

  • The Case Management/Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) System is an electronic filing system used to electronically file documents with the Court via the internet.

  • The Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) System is an electronic public access service that allows users to run reports and view documents from all federal courts via the internet.

Will I need a PACER or CM/ECF account to view the Rules of the Court, Administrative Orders and Slip Opinions on the Court’s website?

  • No, all of the content on the Court’s website, www.cit.uscourts.gov, will be accessible without a PACER or CM/ECF account.

 

PACER Registration and Accounts

How do I register for a PACER account?

  • You must register for a PACER account at the PACER website: www.pacer.gov.

Can I register for a PACER account now?

  • Yes, you can register for a PACER account at any time.  Please note that you must continue to use your CM/ECF User ID and Password to file, run reports and/or view documents until October 1, 2013.

Can I use PACER to run reports and view documents on the Court’s CM/ECF System now?

  • No, you must continue to use your CM/ECF User ID and Password to file, run reports and/or view documents until October 1, 2013.

I already have my own PACER account, will I need to register for a new one?

  • No.  After the transition to PACER, you will be able to use your current PACER account to run reports and view documents.

I already share a PACER account provided by my firm/agency/company, will I have to register for my own PACER account?

  • No, you can continue to use your shared PACER account.  If you are also a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer, you will be able to link your CM/ECF account to your shared PACER account to allow you to file, run reports and view documents using only your CM/ECF User ID and password.

 

PACER Access Fees

When I log into PACER, I am prompted for my Login, Password and Client Code.  What is the Client Code?

  • After the transition, you will be able to use the optional Client Code field to help you organize your PACER transactions for your internal billing process.  You can enter up to 32 characters of text in this field.  For more information on Client Code settings, visit the PACER website at: www.pacer.gov and click on Manage My PACER Account.

What will the access fees be for using the PACER System?

  • Generally speaking, access to documents, docket sheets or case-specific reports will be $0.10 per page for the public and private attorneys and $0.08 per page for the government(until 2015, and then the government will also be charged $0.10 per page).  The fee will be capped at 30 pages for most documents - for most documents, no fee will be charged beyond the 30th page (see the PACER website for those few documents where charges beyond 30 pages are incurred.  No PACER fees will be charged for accessing slip opinions and PACER fees will not be charged until an account holder accrues more than $15.00 in fees in a quarterly billing cycle.  Also, documents served on parties by a Notice of Electronic Filing can be viewed once without incurring any charges.  After this “one free look,” however, charges will begin to incur.  To view the PACER Fee Schedule, visit the PACER website at www.pacer.gov.

Will there be new fees for filing documents?

  • No, there will be no additional fees for filing documents.

 

CM/ECF Users

I am registered as a CM/ECF User, how will the transition to the PACER System affect me?

  • After October 1, 2013, you will not be able to access queries, reports and documents using your CM/ECF User ID and Password.  You will need a PACER account and your access will be subject to PACER fees.

 

CM/ECF Filers and Confidential Information Filers

I am a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer, how will the Court’s transition to the PACER System affect me?

  • You will continue to use your CM/ECF User ID and Password to file documents with the Court.  You will also receive one free look at documents served upon you via Notice of Electronic Filing.  During this free look, you can print and/or save the document to your computer for future use.  After the free look or to run reports and view other documents, you will need a PACER account and be subject to PACER fees.

I am an attorney with active cases before the Court, will I need an account for PACER, CM/ECF or both?

  • If you only wish to file documents and receive one free look at documents served upon you via Notice of Electronic Filing, you will only need a CM/ECF account.  To run reports and view any other documents, you will need a PACER account.

I have a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer account and a PACER account, can I link them together?

  • Yes, after October 1, 2013, you will be able to link your accounts together.  This will allow you to file, run reports and view documents using only your CM/ECF User ID and Password.
  • If you do not link your accounts together, you will need to use your CM/ECF User ID and Password to file documents and then use your PACER Login and Password to run reports and view documents not served upon you via Notice of Electronic Filing.
  • When you log in to CM/ECF using your CM/ECF User ID and Password and attempt to view a document, perform a query or run a report after October 1, 2013, you will be taken to a PACER Login page.
  • To link your accounts together, check the box marked, “Make this my default PACER login”, enter your PACER Login and Password and click on the Login button.
  • After your accounts are linked together, you will no longer be prompted to enter your PACER Login and Password.

 

Notices of Electronic Filing and One Free Look

I am a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer, will I need a PACER account to receive notice of activity in my cases?

  • No, CM/ECF will continue to send you a Notice of Electronic Filing when there is activity in your cases whether or not you have a PACER account.

I am a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer, how will I get my one free look at a document served upon me via Notice of Electronic Filing?

  • When you receive your Notice of Electronic Filing, click on the link to the document.  You will not be charged for your first look at the document and you may print and/or save the document to your computer for future use.  If you click on the link to the docket sheet or attempt to access the document after this free look, you will need a PACER account and be subject to PACER fees.

Will each attorney of record in a case get one free look at a document served upon them via Notice of Electronic Filing?

  • Yes, all attorneys of record will receive one free look at the document served upon them via Notice of Electronic Filing.

I have secondary email addresses linked to my CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer account, will they get one free look at the documents served upon them via Notice of Electronic Filing?

  • Yes, anyone receiving a Notice of Electronic Filing will get one free look at the document and be able to print and/or save that document to their computer for future use.  If they click on the link to the docket sheet or attempt to access the document after this free look, they will need a PACER account and be subject to PACER fees.

 

Updating Your Contact Information

If I need to update my contact information, will I have to notify both PACER and the Court?

  • If you have a PACER account, you must update your PACER account through the “Manage My PACER Account” page on the PACER website at: www.pacer.gov.
  • If you are a CM/ECF Filer or Confidential Information Filer, you must also notify the Court by submitting a Request for Change in Information form.  If you also appear in active cases before the Court, you will need to file the appropriate forms in each of your cases.

 

PACER Training and Help

Is PACER training available?

  • Yes, PACER provides a Frequently Asked Questions section, a free training page and video tutorials on their website at: www.pacer.gov.

Who do I contact for PACER-related help?

  • For all PACER-related questions regarding registration, logins and passwords,  accounts and fees, please contact the PACER Service Center at pacer@psc.uscourts.gov or (800) 676-6856 from 8:00am to 6:00pm, Central Standard Time.

 

 

 

If you have any questions - Please contact the CM/ECF Help Desk at 866-450-1859 or send an email to cmecf_helpdesk@cit.uscourts.gov.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Last modified August 29, 2014