De Lucena Neto on Lawsuit Automation in Brazil

Professor Dr. Cláudio de Lucena Neto of Universidade Estadual da Paraíba Departamento de Direito Privado presented a paper entitled The [Effects] of Lawsuit Automation in a Labour Court and in a Common Justice Court in the State of Paraíba, Brazil: A Comparative Case Study, at LexInformatica 2011 / CLIT 2011: The 4th Regional Conference on Law and Electronic Communications / The 5th Regional Conference on Cybercrime, Law and Information Technology, held 29-30 June 2011, in Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa. Here is the abstract:

Technological development has introduced deep changes in the legal field. In Brazil, the introduction of new technologies in legal activities that made it possible for a lawsuit to be fully conducted by electronic means in the various courts and judicial instances, is a remarkable process, that keeps being constantly improved.
Information systems and lawsuit processing software applications were regulated in Brazil with the introduction of Federal Law number 11.419/2006, which enables the organisms of the Judiciary Power to fully or partially automate its lawsuits, making the practice of procedural acts, as the sending of an electronic petition and other procedural communications, possible through Internet. Moreover, the referred legal text faces criticism from authors in Brazil, under the argument that it already went into effect with flaws, and that it is not able, in the present, to reflect the recent changes and updates in the field of new technologies.

Although not yet implemented in all judicial organisms, instances and districts, lawsuit processing software applications are already adopted in various spheres of justice administration. An experience that occurs in Labor Courts, one of the pioneer instances to implement automation lawsuit tools in all its districts and in the creation of a fully electronic pilot project district should be highlighted in the Brazilian national scenario, in comparison to a Common Justice District, which is based on traditional, paper processing practices.

The use of information systems and lawsuit processing software applications, besides being an important tool in the numerous attempts to enhance the speed of the legal system’s response to the citizen, also reflects in the internal organization of the judiciary system, and in the practices of lawyers and the citizens themselves, as it happens with the information search and petition system which can be operated through the World Wide Web. On the other hand, it brings along flaws and difficulties, as privacy issues and technical support problems which have not been easily solved, troubles that represent obstacles which need to be faced and surpassed, on the way to the offer of an adequate judicial service.

For the full text of the paper, please contact the author. Thanks to Dr. de Lucena Neto for granting permission to post the abstract.

A related paper, Cláudio de Lucena Neto and Coronel Salvino de Figueiredo, The Potential of e-Justice in Brazil, was presented at The 3rd International Seminar on Information Law, 25-26 June 2010, in Corfu, Greece.

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