Probate Court On-Line Help
The basic steps for e-Filing a new case are:
- Prepare your documents (Must be in PDF or Word format).
- Login to the e-Filing system.
- From the Home page click on the New Case button.
- Click on the Court (Example: PROBATE COURT).
- Clicking on a case type (Example: Civil) will move you to the Case Sub-type page. (For this example, select Creditor's Claim.)
- On the Case Initiation page you will start entering case and party information.
The Filer Reference number is a helpful feature that you may use by entering your own alpha/numeric tracking system if you have a separate tracking system in your office. The alpha/numeric tracking information that you may enter will be included in the Subject line of any eMail sent to you on the case from the e-Filing system.
By default the Base Case number is required on Probate Civil cases. If there is no Base Case number, such as an open Estate or Guardianship, then you will select 'No' and will be prompted to enter a case name. Next add participants to the case by clicking on the buttons to Add My Parties or Add Other Parties. Add the parties, selecting the party title such as plaintiff, defendant, applicant, respondent, et cetera, depending on the case type.
Adding parties on a Probate Civil case:
Enter the Plaintiff information by clicking the 'Add My Parties' button. When finished click 'next' button. Additional Plaintiffs may be added by repeating this process.
Enter the Defendant information by clicking the 'Add Other Parties' button. When finished click 'next' button. Additional Defendants may be added by repeating this process.
Enter Title information such as 'Guardian of the Estate of John Smith' in the 'Title' field. This field is limited to 50 characters and you may need to abbreviate.
Last Name or Business Name is a required (*) field.
When a Party is a Business or Agency, you enter the name in the Last Name (or Business Name) field (e.g.: Huntington Nat'l Bank or Franklin County Treasurer).
When all party information has been entered clicking the 'Next' button will take you to the 'Add a Document' page.
- When adding your documents:
- Selecting a 'Document Category' will provide a listing of documents based on that category.
- You must select a 'Document Type' from the pull-down menu. The Document Type represents the document you are filing such as the 'Complaint' or the 'Request for Issuance of Summons'
- The 'Additional Text' field is an optional area where you can enter descriptive information about the document you are adding.
- Use the 'Browse' button to locate the documents you prepared on your local computer.
- Proposed Entries and Orders must be Word (.doc or .docx) or editable PDF format. Editable PDF Court forms are provided through the Court's website under the heading eForms.
- Word documents require that the 'Page Count' be entered.
- PDF documents calculate the page count automatically.
- Pressing the 'Add' button copies your local document to the e-Filing system to be included in the submission. The message 'Uploading document, please wait' will display.
- When you click the 'Add' button, the e-Filing system checks to see if there is additional information needed for this type of document. If there is, the e-Filing system will display a docform. Docforms are used to capture additional information such as proposed hearing dates.
- Once your document is copied to the e-Filing system you will see it listed on the bottom half of the screen. If for some reason you are not sure that you uploaded the correct document, you can click on the document link under 'View Document' and the document will be downloaded from the server back to your local workstation so that you can view the document. If for some reason it is the wrong document, use the red 'X' under 'Remove' to delete that document.
- Repeat the process to add a document as many times as you need or until the submission has reached its size limitation.
Once you have added all the documents into this submission clicking on the 'Next' button will display the 'Review and Approve Filing' page.
- Review and Approve page:
- For case initiation there are always fees associated to the submission.
- Buttons named 'Change Case Data' and 'Add/Remove Documents' permit you to go back and make changes to the party data and document uploads prior to submitting to the Court.
- If you are still uncertain about which documents you included, a list of the documents and a link to view them are included on this page.
- If an 'Additional Deposit' is required there will be a message that a deposit of a certain amount is required.
- Choose 'Back' this takes you back to the 'Add a Document' page.
- Under 'Document Category' choose 'Deposit Codes'.
- Under 'Document Type' choose 'Additional Deposit'.
- Click Add.
- This takes you to a docform where you will enter the minimum required deposit amount. Amount must be entered in dollar and cents. (e.g.: 25.00 - Do not enter a dollar sign symbol).
- Click Next.
- You will see the Additional Deposit information under Document Name.
- Click 'Next'.
- Now choose your Payment Method:
- Pay by Credit Card
- Estimated fees are listed
- Click 'Submit the Filing'
- Takes you to PayGOV.US
- When Court costs are paid you will be redirected back to the e-Filing system and 'Your Filing has been submitted' message is displayed. If your session times out, or you lose your connection and you are not sure if your payment information was fully collected, go to your 'Home' page and click on 'Filing Status'. From this page if there is a 'Make Payment' button on the right of this submission that means you must click on that button to complete the collection of payment info and complete the submission.
- The 'Filing has been submitted' page assures you that your submission has been sent to the Court. The exact 'submitted' time stamp is dependent on when the Court's server receives the entire package and not when you pressed the Submit button.
e-Filing to an existing case
Often, you need to submit a follow-up filing. Filing to an existing case is very similar to filing a new case. You need to:
- Prepare your documents.
- Select an existing case.
- Add documents.
- Review the filing.
Submit the filing and make any required payment.
To file to an existing case::
- Option One:
- From the Home Page click File to Existing Case.
- Enter e-File Case Number. (Example: 297385WC)
- Select Court.
- Enter Last Name of Case.
- Click Submit.
- Option Two:
- From the Home Page click My Recent Cases or select Cases and My Cases from the navigation menu across the top of the page.
- If the case you need is not listed, type the case number in the Case Number box and the llast name of the case in the Last Name box.
- Click the Submit button.
Checking the Status of My Submissions
Whenever you e-File to the Court, the case status is immediately updated to reflect its progress. Status changes happen rapidly as submissions are processed by the Court's server; sometimes so rapidly that you may not notice them. You can use the Filing Status dialog box to display and track the status changes for each submission.
It is a good idea to review filing statuses regularly to make sure that submissions are processed. For example, a status may include a note from the Clerk of the Court notifying you of additional costs due.
To list current filing statuses from the eFlex home page, click the Filing Status button. Each entry in the list represents the status of a submission. These entries are temporary and are deleted after 90 days. The current status of a submission is listed in the Status column, as follows:
- Package Pending: Documents and data are being prepared in an electronic package to be sent to the Court's Review system.
- Packaged: Documents and data have been transmitted to the Review system.
- Received: Documents and data have been received by the Review system.
- Awaiting Approval The submission is awaiting approval. The Court clerk has not yet reviewed and approved the submission.
- Not Accepted: The submission has not been accepted by the clerk and the eMail Notification provides the reason for non-acceptance. You can click the Resubmit button to create a new submission based on the previous submission. The potential new submission will include links to the documents from the not accepted submission.
- Resubmitted: This filing has been resubmitted.
- Accepted: The submission has been accepted and filed.
- Payment Pending: Payment is in process with PayGOV.
Clicking the link in the Status column displays a Filing Status dialog box with extensive details about that submission/filing.
If you want to limit the list to a set time period, use the calendar icons to select a starting and ending date, and then click the Go button.
To display the documents associated with a filing, click the [+] symbol next to it in the Filing ID column. The [+] symbol changes to a [-] and the documents are listed. You can then click a document name link to display the document. Clicking the [-] symbol next to the document type hides the document list.
The Draft Filings feature acts as a backup if you are disconnected from the Internet or need to move away from eFlex. Once you have moved to at least the Add a Document page within eFlex you will have a button choice of Move to Draft. Whenever you begin creating a new submission, eFlex records data each time you advance to the next screen, including any document data you have loaded.
If your Internet connection goes down, the system creates a draft of your submission automatically. When you're back online, you can continue the process. Each time you log out, if there are submissions in your Draft Filings queue you will be asked 'Are you sure you want to log out?'. Clicking on the 'Yes' button keeps the draft items in the Draft Filings queue. Clicking on the 'No' button permits you to stay logged in and continue working.
To resume work on a draft filing:
- Click e-File Draft Filings to see a list of partially completed submissions.
- Click the link below 'Case Type/Subtype' to return to the last page on which you worked.
- Continue with the submission.
- You can also delete entries if you no longer need the information or if you completed the submission by starting over.
Notice of Electronic Filing (NEF)(e-Service)
Once you have e-Filed a case, you are electronically linked to that case. You will start receiving NEF posts to your account after clerk approval.
Whenever someone sends a follow-up submission on that case, the e-Filing system posts an NEF to your account.
You only receive NEF notifications on cases that appear on your My Cases list. This list displays the cases in which you are registered as a participant. Note: Notifications are not permanent. They are deleted after a set period of time, as determined by the Court. Also, they do not replace current Court Rules and procedures which require filers to send paper notifications to the parties involved in the case. Check your notifications regularly, download any documents associated with them, and delete the old notifications. Notifications that haven't been viewed have a closed envelope icon beside them. Once you have reviewed a notification, its envelope icon opens.
To view the NEF list:
- Click the Notifications button on the home page or select Cases Notifications from the navigation menu.
- Click the link in the entry to view the Notice of Electronic Filing.
- Click the document link to display the documents. You can then save these documents to a local drive.
Notifications do not display detailed case information; for more complete information, click My Recent Cases on the home page or select Cases My Cases from the home menu.
There are several conditions that could cause your submittance to have payment problems. Example:
- Click My Recent Cases from the home page or select Cases My Cases from the menu.
- Click the Certificate of Service link to display the Certificate of Service for that case.
The Certificate of Service lists those parties who are being served electronically as well as those parties who may need to be notified with a paper copy of the submission.
- No Money Collected / Submission not complete: For some reason the payment process was not completed and no fees were pre-approved or paid. In this case the submission receives a status of MAKE PAYMENT and the submission date and time is not recorded.
- If the filer selects the Special Waiver or Request Payment Waiver option without prior Court approval the filing will be returned with status Not Accepted:
Note: Your credit card will not be charged until the clerk has approved your submittance.
Notice of Case Association (NOCA)
If you are a pro se filer you will need to associate yourself to the case in order to receive NEFs (Notice of Electronic Filing).
- Choose Document Category 'NOTICE OF CASE ASSOCIATION'
- Chose Document Type 'NOTICE OF CASE ASSOCIATION'
- Click Add
- Select your name
- Click Next
Deposit Code Instructions
If you get to the Review and Approve Filings page and there are additional costs due you will see an 'Error' message in red font informing you that a MINIMAL ADDITIONAL DEPOSIT IS REQUIRED.
If an additional deposit is required:
This will take you back to the Review and Approve Filing page.
Select the Back button
- Select Document Category - DEPOSIT CODES
- Select Document Type - Additional Deposit
- Click Add
- Enter deposit amount (Example: 25.00)
- Click 'Next'