News story

Crime news: practitioners needed for defence portal development

Chance to help shape the criminal justice system digital future for defence.

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More defence practitioners are needed to help inform and shape the development of an online portal which will allow the defence to:

  • access essential criminal case information
  • interact with the prosecution and courts
  • download initial disclosure of the prosecution case (IDPC)

If you are interested and would like to be involved a contact email address is provided below.

What is the defence portal?

The defence portal will be the defence practitioners’ route into a unified digital criminal case management system known as the ‘Common Platform’.

This Criminal Justice System Common Platform Programme’ (CJSCPP) is a joint initiative between Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

Shift from paper to digital processes

Access to the ‘Common Platform’ means that everyone working on a case will be able to use digital processes instead of paper to share information collaboratively. This reduces the number of administrative processes and unnecessary delays.

More about defence portal development

The programme wants defence practitioners to be involved throughout the development and testing cycle of the online portal to ensure that their needs are understood and being met.This is the approach being followed for all of the products being developed for the ‘Common Platform’.

The idea is to make sure that the defence portal has features tailored to the requirements of defence practitioners and is easy to use.

Prototype testing and feedback will take place with users every 2 weeks and in the coming months this will focus on:

  • logging on to the Common Platform
  • searching for a case
  • obtaining initial disclosure of the prosecution case
  • participating in case management
  • the receipt of directions for both magistrates’ court and Crown Court

What to do now

If you would like to take part in the development of the online portal you can register your interest by email – see below.

Further information

CJSCPComms@hmcts.gsi.gov.uk – to register your interest in supporting the programme or email questions, suggestions or information to help develop the defence portal.

Published 2 September 2015