Palm Beach County speeds court filings with AI

With five robots handling basic docketing processes, the county is enhancing efficiency, converting skeptics and escalating staff to higher-value work — and higher pay.

Palm Beach County speeds court filings with AI
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Florida’s Palm Beach County is keeping five recent recruits in the dark to boost productivity: The Lights-Out Court Document Processing project has five “robots” working 24/7 to process some of the thousands of documents the county court receives each week. It’s an example of how artificial intelligence and humans can work alongside one another — and shows how enterprises can enhance manual systems with AI.

Attorneys and other frequent filers at Palm Beach County Court are required to submit documents electronically, using a dedicated portal that’s available 24/7. Altogether, they file about 40,000 court documents a week this way, each of which must be docketed — that is, associated with the correct case, tagged and indexed so that it can be found in the court’s records.

It’s a laborious process, one that Sharon R. Bock, clerk and comptroller for Palm Beach County, saw as ripe for automation.

Bock, who oversees around 700 employees and a $70 million budget, is always looking for more efficient ways to perform statutory and constitutional duties. With payroll accounting for 95 percent of her spend, using automation technology to deal with some out-of-hours- filings and help staff do more during regular office hours was an obvious target.

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