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About CM / ECF

Case Management / Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) is the Federal Judiciary's system for Bankruptcy and District Courts that allows certified filers the option to electronically file cases and documents online. Generally, only attorneys, their staff, and creditors are allowed access to CM/ECF. Individual (pro se) debtors are not allowed to file using CM/ECF, but are allowed to file over-the-counter at the courthouse.

At the U.S. Bankruptcy Court - Southern District of California, filing using CM/ECF is mandatory for all except pro se debtors. (Effective March 1, 2010, the Court mandated the electronic filing and submission of all documents filed by attorneys and trustees in this court.)

CM/ECF has numerous advantages. Click here to review the CM/ECF Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

We are a NextGen Court

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court - Southern District of California uses the Next Generation (NextGen) CM/ECF system that allows filers who have been trained and certfied to access both PACER and CM/ECF electronic filing with a single login and password, also known as central sign-on. This single login and password allows access to all other courts using NextGen CM/ECF and in which you have permission to file electronically.

NextGen CM/ECF is an upgraded version of CM/ECF that other courts may be using.

Be aware that not all federal courts have switched to NextGen CM/ECF.
To see a list of those courts currently using NextGen CM/ECF, click here. Eventually, NextGen CM/ECF will be instituted in all federal courts (bankruptcy, district, and appellate).

If you electronically file in courts that have not converted to NextGen CM/ECF,
then you must continue to use their regular, individual CM/ECF logins and passwords until those courts begin using NextGen CM/ECF.

CM/ECF Access Levels

The type of document(s) you file determines your CM/ECF access level. For example, documents such as claims can be filed by a certified creditor representative. Other documents, such as motions and objections, may be filed by certified attorneys and their staff only. After you become trained and certified to use CM/ECF, your CM/ECF login determines the access level you have.

CM/ECF Training and Certification

To use NextGen CM/ECF, filers must be trained by our court and be certified. To learn more about becoming trained and certified to use NextGen CM/ECF in the Southern District of California, click on the CM/ECF Training and Registration link.