January 25, 2022

Report: Federal Judiciary Misused PACER Fees, Judge Says in Class Action Ruling

From Law.com:

The federal judiciary misused millions of dollars in fees derived from an electronic public web portal for court documents to fund certain programs that federal law did not allow, a Washington judge ruled on Saturday.

U.S. District Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle said the United States is liable for certain improper expenses that violated the E-Government Act of 2002. The ruling came in a class action that alleged the judiciary’s administrative office set fees too high for the online portal Public Access to Court Electronic Records, commonly known as PACER.


Huvelle turned down the challengers’ argument that PACER fees must be restricted solely to the marginal cost of running PACER itself, and she dismissed the government’s position that the judiciary has latitude to spend PACER fees on broad programs that might benefit some members of the public but not all.

Read the Complete Article, Read Court Ruling (about 650 words)

Access All Documents in the Case (via Court Listener)

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.