Indiana eFiling: Document formatting requirements

All documents must be submitted as PDF

It's best to save your documents as PDF directly or export them to PDF format. Try to avoid scanning paper documents to create PDFs. Unlike scanning, exporting to PDF preserves the text of the source document, making it searchable and resulting in a smaller file size. 

One Legal will convert most document types, including Word, Word Perfect, and image files, to PDF when you upload them for eFiling.


Fillable PDF forms

Some documents that you wish to eFile may be available as fillable PDF forms. Take care when saving fillable forms. Unless the form is saved correctly the form entries will either be missing or editable. To prepare a fillable PDF for eFiling, you must "print to PDF" instead of saving. There's further guidance on the One Legal Blog.


Scanned PDF requirements

Use the following settings when scanning:

  • Resolution of 300 DPI.
  • For black and white: Scan to PDF or Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) with Group 4 compression.
  • When color is essential: Scan to PDF, JPG, or PNG format, 8 bit (bpp or bits per pixel) with lossy data compression.
  • If scanning to TIFF, JPG, or PNG, convert to PDF before uploading (note: One Legal will automatically convert when you upload).
  • Always apply optical character recognition (OCR) (note: One Legal will automatically apply OCR to uploaded images).

There's further guidance for uploading scanned documents on the One Legal Blog.


Ability to view and legibility

  • Every document must be viewable in its entirety with PDF viewing software.
  • Corrupt or incomplete files may be rejected, so verify that your files are complete and not corrupted.
  • Documents must be readable. You are responsible for ensuring that scanning does not diminish the readability of the document. 

Limits on file size

When you eFile you can submit multiple documents inside a single "envelope." For example, a motion, a supporting affidavit, and a proposed order can all be submitted as separate documents inside one envelope.

Trial courts

  • 25 MB limit on each document
  • 35 MB total limit on each envelope

Appellate courts

  • 50 MB limit on each document
  • 75 MB total limit on each envelope

Filings that exceed these limits cannot be submitted. You will need to take steps to reduce the size of your PDF. Learn more on the One Legal blog.


Page size and layout

Documents that you prepare should meet the following specifications:

  • 8.5" x 11" page size
  • Portrait orientation
  • 1" top margin free of text and other markings (except required header)
  • Pages in each PDF file numbered consecutively

Documents that you did not prepare (e.g. a party's bank statement or driver's license) can be submitted in PDF format at the documents original page size.

Appellate briefs

In appellate briefs only, each page, except for the front page, must have a left-justified header that states the:

  • Document name
  • Name of the party filing

For example: "Brief of Appellant Joe Smith."

You will always divide your appendix document into at least two PDF files (two volumes). Volume 1 will always be the table of contents for the entire appendix. Depending on the number of pages in the entire appendix and the file size, you may only need one additional volume (Volume 2), or you may need more volumes (Volumes 3, 4, 5, etc.). If you reach the 50 MB limit before you reach the 250-page limit you must begin a new volume. Each volume should begin with a front page on page 1, regardless of whether you reach the 250-page limit in the previous volume.


Prohibited items

Documents must not contain:

  • Encryption, password protection, or other features that limit access
  • Unreadable words or images
  • Invalid or corrupted tables
  • Embedded files
  • Any other form of information that cannot be readily viewed in its entirety with PDF viewing software

Bookmarks and hyperlinks

Bookmarks help the reader to navigate a PDF, so they are welcome, but not required. You may include hyperlinks in any document, but make sure that you:

  • Link only to websites that are public, not requiring registration or subscription
  • Do not use hyperlinks as a substitute for standard citations to law or opinions
  • Display the URL in the text: Do: http://courts.in.gov Don't Indiana court website

Bullet points and other special characters

Sometimes special characters in a document don't convert well into PDF format and may cause the document to be rejected. This unusual, however. The system can process any character that can be typed on a standard English keyboard, including these symbols: § ® © ™ ¶ € £


File names

The name of the document you are eFiling must not exceed 100 characters. This includes spacing and the file extension (.pdf).


Non-conforming documents

Occassionally, it wil not be feasible to convert a document to electronic format that complies with the requirements above. Before eFiling these documents, you must electronically file a motion for leave to file them conventionally. 


Signatures

All eFiled documents must include a person's signature. Sign a document using:

  • A graphic image of a handwritten signature
  • An actual signatured on a scanned document
  • The indicated "/s/" followed by the person's name

A document that is signed and eFiled is subject to the terms and provisions of Ind. Trial Rule 11. You may include the signature of other attorneys in documents eFiled with the court, but in doing so you represent to the court that any such signature is authorized.


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