Bureau Launches TNComp, Bypassing Cumbersome Manual Filings
Thursday, March 1, 2018 | 200 | 0 | 27 min read
The Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation on Wednesday launched an electronic filing system that allows documents to be filed without requiring staff members to print and stamp documents before entering them into the database.
The bureau said in a press release that parties have been able to file documents via email since the administrative court system was instituted in 2014, but the previous system required staffers to finish the process of entering documents into the electronic court records. That process took 24 to 48 hours to complete.
“With approximately 1,000 documents filed per month in our court alone, we had to move in this direction,” said Penny Shrum, clerk of the court for the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims.
BWC modeled TNComp after the PACER platform used by the federal court system, but tailored it to meet the needs of Tennessee.
TNComp allows attorneys to electronically file documents, view any documents associated with the case, receive notices when a new document is filed and receive reminders of upcoming hearings. Unlike the federal government’s PACER, TNComp is provided to the user at no cost.
“The court’s core values include striving for excellence and constant improvement,” stated Kenneth M. Switzer of Nashville, chief judge of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims. “TNComp is a primary example of our commitment, making court business more efficient for everyone throughout the process.”
The BWC said it took nearly three years to develop TNComp. The courts first implemented the system internally to train staff for a two-month period before launching the system.
The bureau made the system accessible to attorneys and litigants with cases where a BWC mediator has filed a dispute certification after Nov. 1, 2017. Parties involved in cases filed prior to that date will continue to use the former system to file documents, the bureau said.
More information about the system, including an instructional video, is available here.