Rule 1.109 Court Records Defined; Document Defined; Filing Standards; Signatures; and Access

(A) Court Records Defined.

(1) Court records are defined by MCR 8.119 and this subrule. Court records are recorded information of any kind that has been created by the court or filed with the court in accordance with Michigan Court Rules. Court records may be created using any means and may be maintained in any medium authorized by these court rules provided those records comply with other provisions of law and these court rules.

(a) Court records include, but are not limited to:

(i) documents, attachments to documents, discovery materials, and other materials filed with the clerk of the court,

(ii) documents, recordings, data, and other recorded information created or handled by the court, including all data produced in conjunction with the use of any system for the purpose of transmitting, accessing, reproducing, or maintaining court records.

(b) For purposes of this subrule:

(i) Documents include, but are not limited to, pleadings, orders, and judgments.

(ii) Recordings refer to audio and video recordings (whether analog or digital), stenotapes, log notes, and other related records.

(iii) Data refers to any information entered in the case management system that is not ordinarily reduced to a document, but that is still recorded information.

(iv) Other recorded information includes, but is not limited to, notices, bench warrants, arrest warrants, and other process issued by the court that do not have to be maintained on paper or digital image.

(2) Discovery materials that are not filed with the clerk of the court are not court records. Exhibits that are maintained by the court reporter or other authorized staff pursuant to MCR 2.518 or MCR 3.930 during the pendency of a proceeding are not court records.

(B) Document Defined. A document means a record produced on paper or a digital image of a record originally produced on paper or originally created by an approved electronic means, the output of which is readable by sight and can be printed to paper.

(C) Filing Standards.

(1) All pleadings and other documents prepared for filing in the courts of this state must comply with MCR 8.119(C) and be filed on good quality 8½ by 11 inch paper or transmitted through an approved electronic means or created electronically by the court and maintained in a digital image. The print must be no smaller than 10 characters per inch (nonproportional) or 12-point (proportional), except with regard to forms approved by the State Court Administrative Office.

(2) All other materials submitted for filing shall be prepared in accordance with this subrule and standards established by the state court administrative office. An attachment or discovery material that is submitted for filing shall be made part of the public case file unless otherwise confidential.

(3) All original documents filed on paper may be reproduced and maintained by the court as a digital image in place of the paper original in accordance with standards and guidelines established by the state court administrative office.

(4) A clerk of the court may reject nonconforming documents as prescribed by MCR 8.119.

(D) Signatures.

(1) A signature, as required by these court rules and law, means a written signature as defined by MCL 8.3q or an electronic signature as defined by this subrule.

(2) An electronic signature means an electronic sound, symbol, or process, attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.

(3) If a law or court rule requires a signature to be notarized or made under oath, the requirement is satisfied if the electronic signature of the person authorized to perform those acts, together with all other information required to be included by other applicable law or court rule, is attached to or logically associated with the signature.

(4) Retention of a signature electronically affixed to a document that will be retained by the court in electronic format must not be dependent upon the mechanism that was used to affix that signature.

(E) Requests for access to public court records shall be granted in accordance with MCR 8.119(H).