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CHICAGO — The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago said that next month it will become the first federal court to provide people with access to court information, such as staff phone numbers and motion calls, on hand-held devices. The court is upgrading its Web site to provide easier access to the information that lawyers cited as most important in a court survey last year, the court said in a press release. The upgrades will enable it to provide the information to hand-held devices. The court last year surveyed 5,000 lawyers who are registered to e-file with the court, 80 Chicago-area firms and court staff to better understand what problems users were encountering and how the site could be improved. “As the virtual gateway to our courthouse, it is imperative that our court’s website be responsive to lawyers’ needs, easy-to-use, informative and up-to-date,” Chief Judge James F. Holderman said in the release. Almost 90 percent of the lawyers surveyed said they use the Web site to access a judge’s motion call or calendar procedure and almost 70 percent said they tap it to consult the local rules or internal operating procedures or find a court staff member’s phone number while over half use it to check the court’s daily calendar. As a result, the court decided to list those options in a new menu bar on the home page, among other changes.

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