An amended rule promulgated by the Wisconsin Supreme Court now allows lawyers to file paper copies of documents with the supreme court instead of original paper documents, as along as the original was physically signed by the lawyer.
July 20, 2022 – An amended rule promulgated by the Wisconsin Supreme Court now allows lawyers to file paper copies of documents with the supreme court instead of original paper documents, as along as the original was physically signed by the lawyer.
In April 2021, the supreme court acted on a rule petition and issued an order that requires all documents filed with the Wisconsin Court of Appeals (except those submitted by pro se litigants) to be filed through an appellate e-filing system.
The same order revised the rules of appellate procedure to authorize and accommodate e-filing in the state’s appellate courts. Those revisions deleted many of the requirements related to filing paper documents in the appellate courts.
However, while S. Ct. Order 19-02 authorized e-filing for a small number of supreme court cases as part of a pilot project, paper filing continued to be required for all supreme court cases that were not part of the project.
Consequently, in June 2021 the supreme court issue a revised interim rule that required litigants in all cases except those in the pilot project to file one original paper document, physically signed by the lawyer, along with paper copies of the original document.
The amended revised interim rule, which the supreme court adopted on July 7, 2022 in S. Ct. Order 19-02B and 20-07B, deletes the requirement that lawyers file original paper documents that contain a handwritten ink signature in supreme court cases that are not part of the pilot project.
Under section 6(A)(3) of the amended revised interim rule, lawyers may file with the supreme court paper copies of original documents as long as the original has been physically signed. Having another person sign a document, or using a signature stamp, an autopen, a digital signature, or any similar method to sign a document for which a paper copy is to be filed is not permitted.