Clerk of the Court: Una O'Boyle
Authorized Judgeships: 1 permanent, 5 temporary
Number of Employees: 68
NCBC Local Representative: Leslie Murin, Laurie Capp
Local Innovations: The District of Delaware has a comparatively heavy bankruptcy case load, especially when considering Chapter 11 cases, and more so when “Mega Cases” (i.e., involving $100 million in assets and at least 1,000 creditors) are factored into consideration. While we embrace opportunities to achieve efficiencies through implementation of new procedures and automated processes, we pursue these opportunities with a balanced approach. While we strive for efficiency, we must ensure that diminished quality is not an unanticipated consequence of new innovations. Further, when analyzing potential quality impacts, we consider more than just that which may have an impact on the docket. We also consider it in the context of the level of service we provide to our internal and external customers; so that we continue to provide the level of service to which our customers have become accustomed.
In the first quarter of 2012, we rolled out the CM/ECF supporting Case Management Assist application developed by Oklahoma Western Bankruptcy Court. In the fall of 2012, our court worked with North Carolina Middle Bankruptcy Court to implement ePOC - the electronic filing of proofs of claim. During our interaction on this process, we were also introduced to ADI (Auto-Docketing Interface) by Joe Markley, Director of Automation at NCMB. We began working with him to setup several events to assist in the efficiency of case administration. We implemented six events during 2013 and have continued to add to our ADI events inventory up through last year. ADI continues to be a valuable tool for our court, and additional uses for ADI are regularly assessed. North Carolina Middle Bankruptcy Court also developed eFinCert, which our court adopted in late 2013. This program allows debtor education providers to notify the court directly when a debtor has fulfilled their financial management course requirements. We are currently in the process of testing the ADI Autoclose feature within CM/ECF for our consumer cases, and will begin full implementation shortly. We are also in the early stages of implementing CHAP, the calendaring program developed by the Utah Bankruptcy Court as a replacement for vCal. The implementation of these automated practices has improved the efficiency of our Court during a period of painful austerity throughout the entire national Bankruptcy Court system. The austerity was no less painful in the District of Delaware, however, the efficiencies we were able to achieve through technology allowed us to continue to administer our caseload seamlessly even after a significant number of budget-driven personnel losses.