RULE 3.5. ELECTRONIC FILING IN DISTRICT COURTS
1 (a) Electronic filing.
2 (1) Documents filed electronically in the district courts must be submitted
3 through the Odyssey® electronic filing system.
4 (2) All documents filed after the initiating pleadings must be filed
5 electronically except for documents filed by self-represented litigants and
6 prisoners. After June 1, 2013, initiating pleadings must be filed electronically in
7 civil, non-juvenile, cases. A party who files a complaint in a civil case must
8 electronically serve notice of filing on the other parties or their attorneys.
9 (3) On a showing of exceptional circumstances in a particular case, anyone
10 may be granted leave of court to file paper documents. Original wills, codicils and
11 other documents of independent legal significance may be filed as paper
12 documents. Colored or shaded documents may be filed as paper documents if
13 necessary to ensure legibility.
14 (4) A document filed electronically has the same legal effect as a paper
16 (5) Any signature on a document filed electronically is considered that of
17 the officer of the court or party it purports to be for all purposes. If it is established
18 that the documents were transmitted without authority, the court must strike the
20 (6) A party who electronically files a proposed order must put the filing
21 party's name in the Odyssey® comments field.
22 (b) Filing formats.
23 (1) Approved formats for documents filed electronically are WordPerfect
24 (.wpd), Word (.doc or.docx), Tagged Image File (.tif), Portable Document File
25 (.pdf) and ASCII (.txt).
26 (2) All paragraphs must be numbered in documents filed electronically.
27 Reference to material in such documents must be to paragraph number, not page
28 number. Paragraph numbering is not required in exhibits, documents prepared
29 before the action was commenced, or in documents not prepared by the parties or
31 (c) Time of filing.
32 (1) A document in compliance with the rules and submitted electronically to
33 the district court clerk by 11:59 p.m. local time is considered filed on the date
35 (2) After reviewing an electronically filed document, the district court clerk
36 must inform the filer, through an e-mail generated by the Odyssey® system,
37 whether the document has been accepted or rejected.
38 (3) If a document submitted for electronic filing is rejected, the time for
39 filing is tolled from the time of submission to the time the e-mail generated by the
40 Odyssey® system notifying the filer of rejection is sent. The document will be
41 considered timely filed if resubmitted within three days after the notice of
42 rejection. A party seeking to take advantage of this tolling provision must file and
43 serve a separate document providing notice that the rejected document is being
44 resubmitted under N.D.R.Ct. 3.5(c)(3).
45 (4) Any required filing fee must be paid by credit card or debit card at the
46 time the document is filed.
47 (d) Confidentiality. In documents prepared for filing with the court,
48 information that would otherwise be included in the document but required by
49 N.D.R.Ct. 3.4 to be redacted in court documents must be separately filed in a
50 reference sheet (confidential information form, see appendix) and may be included
51 in those documents only by reference. Any document not complying with this
52 order is subject to N.D.R.Ct. 3.4(g).
53 (e) Electronic service.
54 (1) All documents filed electronically after the initiating pleadings must be
55 served electronically through the Odyssey® system except for documents served
56 on or by self-represented litigants and prisoners. On a showing of exceptional
57 circumstances in a particular case, anyone may be granted leave of court to serve
58 paper documents or to be exempt from receiving electronic service. Attorneys who
59 are required by rule or statute to serve documents on their own clients may serve
60 paper documents.
61 (2) Except as provided in N.D.R.Ct. 3.5(e)(4), electronic service of a
62 document is not effective if the party making service learns through any means that
63 the document did not reach the person to be served.
64 (3) All attorneys must provide at least one e-mail address to the State Board
65 of Law Examiners for accepting electronic service. Designated email service
66 addresses will be posted on the North Dakota Supreme Court website.
67 (4) For purposes of computation of time, any document electronically
68 served must be treated as if it were mailed on the date of transmission. If an
69 attorney who is not exempt from electronic service fails to provide an e-mail
70 address for service or fails to accept or open electronically served e-mail, the
71 server's attempt at electronic service constitutes delivery. Service made impossible
72 due to an attorney's failure to provide an e-mail address must be shown by an
73 affidavit or certificate of attempted service.
74 (f) Technical issues; Relief. On a showing of good cause, the court may
75 grant appropriate relief if electronic filing or electronic service was not completed
76 due to technical problems.
77 EXPLANATORY NOTE
78 Adopted effective January 15, 2013; amended effective April 15, 2013; June 1,
80 Rule 3.5 was originally adopted as N.D.Sup.Ct.Admin.O. 16 on March 1,
81 2006. Order 16 was later amended, effective March 1, 2008; March 1, 2009;
82 August 1, 2010; March 1, 2011; and July 1, 2012.
83 Order 16 was amended, effective July 1, 2012, to incorporate the provisions
84 of the Order 16 Addendum (Filing in the District Court where Odyssey®
85 Electronic Filing is Available) and N.D.Sup.Ct.Admin.O. 18 (Filing in Counties
86 Using the Odyssey® Case Management System). The Order 16 Addendum and
87 Order 18 were repealed, effective July 1, 2012.
88 In an appeal from an agency determination under N.D.C.C. § 28-32-42, the
89 notice of appeal must be served on all the entities listed in the statute, some of
90 whom may not be subject to electronic service through the Odyssey® system.
91 Subdivision (a) was amended, effective_______________, to require a
92 party filing a proposed order to put the party name in the Odyssey® comments
94 Sources: Joint Procedure Committee Minutes of April 25-26, 2013, pages 3-
95 6; January 31-February 1, 2013, pages 2-5, 15-18; September 27, 2012, pages 14-
96 1; April 29-30, 2010, page 21; April 24-25, 2008, pages 12-16; October 11-12,
97 2007, pages 3-5; April 26-27, 2007, pages 16-18; January 25, 2007, pages 15-16;
98 Sept 23-24, 2004, pages 18-27.
99 Statutes Affected:
100 Considered: N.D.C.C. § 28-32-42.
101 Cross References: N.D.R.Ct. 3.4 (Privacy Protection for Filings Made with
102 the Court); N.D.R.Civ.P. 4 (Persons Subject to Jurisdiction; Process; Service);
103 N.D.R.Civ.P. 5 (Service and Filing of Pleadings and Other Documents); N.D.
104 Admission to Practice R. 1 (General Requirements for Admission).