To the untrained eye, technology and the judiciary sector may seem rather far apart. IT is ever changing and dynamic, while courts are by design deliberate and slow. However, even the most resistant institutions are not immune to change; Serbian courts now appear to be further steps towards incorporating new technology for the ultimate goal of greater efficiency.
Recently, announcements have been made disclosing the development of a new platform for data exchange, which will be implemented within the judiciary system and related governmental authorities. Furthermore, the system is intended to support e-filing and has been modelled after similar practices in Singapore, a widely-considered leader in e-judiciary.
The underlying idea is to simplify the use and exchange of data between the different case management systems by the various entities within the judiciary (e.g. courts of different instances and competences, public prosecutor offices, police, Ministry of Justice, public notaries, etc.). Also, the new platform should represent a data hub, allowing for secure data exchange mechanisms while facilitating more efficient communication with the courts.
Naturally, there are significant challenges to overcome, including a legacy of an overburdened judiciary, lack of capacity and difficulties within the legal framework and enforcement practice. However, a centralized and efficient IT platform should help by making court procedures cheaper, more accessible and efficient, ultimately contributing to an overall improvement in the local rule of law.