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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 1: Introduction (2:50)

What is bankruptcy? What happens in a bankruptcy case? Bankruptcy is a legal process that provides relief for individuals who can no longer pay all of their debts. If you are considering bankruptcy, this video will give you basic information about the process, the relief it offers, and how to find the legal help you may need.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 2: Types of Bankruptcy (4:06)

A brief review of the three main types of bankruptcy cases for individuals – chapters 7, 11, and 13. The most common types of bankruptcy are chapter 7, which are liquidating bankruptcy, and chapter 13 cases, often used by individuals who want to catch up on past due mortgage or car loan payments and keep their assets.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 3: Limits of Bankruptcy (4:44)

Certain types of debt, such as child support, alimony, and most student loans, cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. Wrongful conduct may make some debts non-dischargeable. Examples of such conduct are incurring credit card charges without the intent or ability to repay, or obtaining loans using false financial information.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 4: Filing for Bankruptcy (3:08)

How does someone file a bankruptcy case? In order to file for bankruptcy, an individual must take a credit counseling course – to learn about alternatives to bankruptcy – as well as accurately complete and file a number of documents.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 5: Creditors' Meeting (1:39)

Every debtor is required to appear at a creditors' meeting conducted by a trustee who asks the debtor questions about the debtor's financial condition and gives creditors the opportunity to do the same.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 6: Bankruptcy Crime (3:36)

A debtor must be honest and accurate in dealing with the court or face serious consequences, including being charged with a bankruptcy crime.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 7: Court Hearings (3:52)

In some cases, a debtor may be required to appear at hearings before a bankruptcy judge.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 8: The Discharge (1:39)

Debtors are usually able to discharge most or all of their debts. Once a debt is discharged, a creditor may not attempt to collect it from the debtor.

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Bankruptcy Basics

Part 9: Legal Assistance (5:10)

When does someone need a lawyer for a bankruptcy case? Individuals have a right to represent themselves in court, but bankruptcy is a complex area that involves many considerations – including whether to file, what chapter to file under, and what exemptions to claim. It is important to understand all of the protections of the bankruptcy code in order to make full use of them.

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Careers

Careers

Opportunities in the U.S. Courts (6:09)

The U.S. Courts offer a range of challenging and rewarding career opportunities nationwide.

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05/17/10

Careers

How to Apply (5:05)

Watch this video to learn how to apply for a job in the U.S. Courts.

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05/17/10

Careers

Case Administrator (4:07)

Case administrators are the "face" of the court to much of the public and attorneys who practice in the court.

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05/17/10

Careers

Court Interpreter (4:22)

Language skills are prized in the federal courts. Highly qualified interpreters in court proceedings involving non-English speakers help ensure that justice is carried out fairly for defendants and other stakeholders.

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05/17/10

Careers

Court Reporter (4:13)

Highly accurate records and transcripts of court proceedings are critical to the administration of justice. Court reporters maintain the courtroom record and produce transcripts of court proceedings according to strict standards.

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05/17/10

Careers

Courtroom Deputy (2:37)

Courtroom Deputies assist judges in processing and managing court proceedings in an orderly fashion, and manage a judge's caseload.

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05/17/10

Careers

Human Resources (2:57)

The U.S.Courts' Human Resources (HR) professionals provide frontline services to the federal court workforce.

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05/17/10

Careers

Information Technology (3:03)

The U.S. Courts' Information Technology (IT) professionals support the courts' extensive technology programs. They make it possible for the judiciary to deliver justice in a technology-driven environment.

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05/17/10

Careers

Jury Administrator (3:27)

The jury administrator ensures that jury selection and management are smooth and efficient processes. Both have an important impact on public perception about jury service.

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05/17/10

Careers

Probation and Pretrial Services (6:03)

Federal offices of Probation and Pretrial Services assist in the administration of justice and promote community safety. They work on the frontlines of federal offender supervision.

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05/17/10

More Careers videos

Educational Resources

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. District Court Judge Julie A. Robinson (4:18)

U.S. District Court Judge Julie A. Robinson’s journey to the federal bench in Topeka, KS, started when, at the age of five, she decided to become a lawyer. She credits her success to her father’s faith in her and the fact that her mentors set high standards and demanded the best from her.

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03/13/14

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Ronald M. Gould (2:56)

Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Ronald M. Gould, of Seattle, does not let multiple sclerosis dampen his passion for justice. He focuses on strengths that transcend his wheelchair confinement and he gives others the opportunity to move beyond their limits.

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11/20/13

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. District Court Judge Myron H. Thompson (4:04)

U.S. District Court Judge Myron H. Thompson, of Montgomery, Ala., pushed past the paralysis of childhood polio to live an active life, excel in academics and become – at age 33 – one of the youngest people appointed to the federal bench. He says he has learned, "Always be prepared for the unexpected, because you'll never know when it will hit you."

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More Educational Resources videos

04/17/13

Bill of Rights

Students Sound Off About the Bill of Rights (2:51)

Students from Miami University of Ohio choose a right that is important to them and explain the impact it has on their lives.

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More Educational Resources videos

12/12/12

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Denny Chin (3:17)

U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Denny Chin, of New York City, is a naturalized citizen. From his grandfather, a waiter, and his father, a cook in Hell’s Kitchen, Chin adopted a work ethic that elevated him to the federal bench. As a federal judge, Chin now presides over the kind of naturalization ceremonies that made three generations of his family U.S. citizens.

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More Educational Resources videos

08/16/12

Pathways to the Bench

Magistrate Judge Maria Valdez (2:30)

U.S. Magistrate Judge Maria Valdez didn’t go right to college. She worked for a year – and kept working – to put herself through college and law school. She doesn’t consider her journey unusual because today’s students face many of the same challenges. Her advice? Keep going even when you don’t know if you can make it.

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08/16/12

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. District Court Judge George Z. Singal (3:27)

U.S. District Court Judge George Z. Singal was born in a WWII refugee camp after his mother and sister escaped eastern Poland. His mother immigrated with her two children to the United States. Today, when Judge Singal presides over naturalization ceremonies, he shares his story and invites new citizens to take advantage of their new opportunities.

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More Educational Resources videos

02/27/12

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Jeffery P. Hopkins (3:10)

At an early age, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Jeffery P. Hopkins took risks and got out of his comfort zone to ask for the help of supportive adults. He reminds young people that many adults want to be part of their success story, too. The judge encourages anyone with goals to show an interest, work hard, and seek the guidance of others.

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12/09/11

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Roger L. Gregory (3:21)

Many federal judges have been touched by the Civil Rights Movement in their youth. Meet U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Roger L. Gregory who says that the struggle taught him that every challenge in his young life lifted him up and still helps him lift others along the way.

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12/09/11

Federal Judges' Oath of Office

(0:57)

In this video, federal judges say their oath of office and explain what it means to them every time they take the bench. The oath is part of the Judiciary Act of 1789. The anniversary of the Act is September 24.

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09/08/11

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Ann C. Williams (3:25)

Judge Ann C. Williams, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago, says that each generation stands on the shoulders of people who went before them. She credits her parents' example for her preparation to serve on the federal bench, and looks to trailblazers like the late Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall for inspiration.

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More Educational Resources videos

06/05/11

Pathways to the Bench

U.S. District Court Judge Virginia Kendall (3:30)

U.S. District Court Judge Virginia Kendall kept moving forward through loss and challenges on her journey to the federal bench. Kendall talks about the importance of believing in herself, digging deep and accepting the support of family and friends along the way to becoming a federal judge in the Northern District of Illinois.

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02/07/11

Pathways to the Bench

Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys (4:36)

Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys rose from the cotton fields of Mississippi to the federal bench by educating himself, persevering and working hard. Keys shares his perspectives on his life – from his time in the Marines and law school, to eventually becoming a federal magistrate judge.

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11/19/10

Court Shorts

Jury Service (5:37)

Why is jury service important? What is the role of the jury? Jury service is the most direct way of participating in our democracy. In this video, students question federal judges from across the country on the basics of jury service.

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05/17/10

Court Shorts

Impartial Judiciary (5:15)

In this edition of Court Shorts, we focus on the importance of a fair and impartial Judiciary. What does this concept mean to you? In this video, students question federal judges on these principles.

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05/17/10

Judiciary Now

Local Federal Courts Offer Events for Students (4:40)

Students Play All the Roles
in True-to-Life Trials

At participating courthouses across the nation, realistic teen scenarios – ranging from downloading music, to distracted driving, to cyberbullying – allow students to serve as jurors, lawyers, and witnesses at local, federal courthouses. Federal judges preside and attorneys coach the students.

08/24/07

Judiciary Now

Students Debate High Court Decisions and Precedent (3:17)

Federal Judges Preside Over
Trial Simulations

Throughout the academic year, high school juniors and seniors argue contemporary Supreme Court decisions before federal judges in their courtrooms. Students show a range of emotions and demonstrate critical thinking skills as they argue different sides of current, controversial issues of importance to them.

09/01/06

News

Judiciary Now

Senate Hearing Is Warned of Lasting Damage to Courts (3:20)

In a congressional hearing on sequestration and the courts, a U.S. judge, federal defender and a private lawyer warned Senators that continued budget cuts could threaten public safety, constitutional rights and economic well-being.

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07/25/13

Judiciary Now

New Citizens Welcomed at Aztec Ruins Naturalization Ceremony (1:43)

Gathering inside a hallowed Pueblo ceremonial room that is nearly 900 years old, the District of New Mexico's chief judge and 10 new American citizens staged a unique naturalization ceremony.

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06/19/13

Judiciary Now

Shared Administrative Services (3:31)

Faced with unprecedented budget cuts, a growing number of courts are using Shared Administrative Services (SAS) to reduce costs. Judges and court staff explain how SAS has benefited their operations.

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05/28/13

Judiciary Now

OSCAR Version 7 Deployment (3:36)

Many Judges and law school students use the On-Line System for Clerkship Application and Review (OSCAR) during the annual clerkship hiring season. The program helps judges evaluate clerkship applicants and also helps potential clerks organize their applications. This year the Federal Judiciary released "OSCAR 7" an updated version of the program that has many improved features.

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(04/15/13)

Judiciary Now

Budget Cuts Compromise Courts (5:53)

Judge Julia Gibbons, chair of the JCUS Budget Committee, and AO Director Judge Thomas Hogan describe the impact of sequestration cuts on the Judiciary during the 2014 Appropriations Hearing before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government.

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(03/20/13)

Judiciary Now

Seattle Court Streamlines Emergency Communications (3:56)

A large winter storm revealed the need for a central communications entity at the district court in Seattle and that’s how the Incident Command Center was born. During a courthouse emergency, the staff leverages the U.S. Marshals surveillance system and the Command Center to assess the emergency, develop an action plan and speak with a singular voice.

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(01/31/13)

Serving Our Courts, Serving Our Country

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Clerk Marcia Anderson (3:56)

Marcia Anderson, Bankruptcy Clerk at the Western District of Wisconsin in Madison, explains how she balances her careers in the Federal Courts and the U.S. Army Reserve. Anderson also comments on the significance of becoming the first African-American U.S. Army Major General.

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(11/08/12)

Judiciary Tests Emergency Plans Against Cyber Attack

Judiciary Now

Judiciary Tests Emergency Plans Against Cyber Attack (3:59)

The Federal Judiciary joined several executive branch agencies in a cyber attack exercise. Court units in Washington DC and New York reacted to a simulation of interruptions in communications services, mass transportation and basic utilities like water and power. Staff from the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts used the exercise to test their ability to continue supporting the Federal court system.

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(7/31/12)

Serving Our Courts, Serving Our Country - Judge Frank D. Whitney

Serving Our Courts, Serving Our Country

U.S District Court Judge Frank D. Whitney (1:55)

U.S. District Court Judge Frank Whitney joined the United States Army Reserve right out of college. When he was appointed a federal judge for the Western District of North Carolina, he continued to serve his country in the military. Whitney became the first active federal judge to serve as a military judge in a theater of war -- in Kuwait, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
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07/03/12

Judges Warn Congress That Steep Budget Cuts Would Have Negative Impact On Judiciary

Judiciary Now

Judges Warn Congress That Steep Budget Cuts Would Have Negative Impact On Judiciary (3:30)

Judge Julia Gibbons, chair of the Judicial Conference Budget Committee, told a House Appropriations Subcommittee that cuts under the Budget Control Act would result in crippling staffing losses as well as cuts to Judiciary operations. Director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, Judge Thomas Hogan, echoed Gibbons' concerns.

04/06/12

Probation and Pretrial Services Tool Puts Clients on the Map

Judiciary Now

Probation and Pretrial Services Tool Puts Clients on the Map (3:00)

Federal Probation and Pretrial Services officers have a new tool to help them enhance community safety and manage cases more efficiently. It's called the Client Mapping Application for Probation and Pretrial Services, and it uses Google Maps to give officers a visual representation of the cases in their areas.

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03/21/12

Judge Wesley Brown Turns 99

Judiciary Now

Judge Wesley Brown Turns 99 (July 2006) (5:02)

Senior U.S. District Judge Wesley Brown, still working, marks his 99th birthday June 22, 2006. Born in 1907, Judge Brown was appointed by President John F. Kennedy in 1962 and assumed senior status in 1979.

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1/25/12

Judiciary Warns of Impact of Deep Cuts for FY 2012

Judiciary Now

Judiciary Warns of Impact of Deep Cuts for FY 2012 (3:25)

Judge Julia Smith Gibbons, chair of the Judicial Conference Budget Committee, presented the Judiciary's 2012 funding request to the Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government of the House Appropriations Committee on April 6.

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4/8/11

OSCAR Is Popular Choice for Clerkship Applicants and Judges

Judiciary Now

OSCAR Is Popular Choice for Clerkship Applicants and Judges (2:19)

In just six years the Online System for Clerkship Application and Review, or OSCAR, has grown significantly. The judiciary has added new features to meet the needs of thousands of users. And most federal judges prefer to receive clerkship applications online through OSCAR.

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3/30/11

Court Employees Attend COOP Planning Session in Washington DC

Judiciary Now

Court Employees Attend COOP Planning Session in Washington DC (4:17)

In 1812 a series of intense earthquakes struck the midwest. Experts believe the area known as The New Madrid Zone could experience a similar series of earthquakes in the near future. The Administrative Office hosted a COOP planning session that uses this scenario.

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3/15/11

Judicial Emergency Declared in District of Arizona

Judiciary Now

Judicial Emergency Declared in District of Arizona (1:45)

The chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona has declared a judicial emergency that temporarily suspends a time limit set by federal law for bringing criminal defendants to trial.

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1/12/11

Chief U.S. District Judge John M. Roll Remembered

Judiciary Now

Chief U.S. District Judge John M. Roll Remembered (4:56)

Flags at federal courthouses around the nation were flown at half-staff, as the federal Judiciary honored the memory of Chief U.S. District Judge John M. Roll, one of several victims fatally shot outside a grocery store during an attack on U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords on January 8 in Tucson, Arizona.

1/12/11

The federal Judiciary is making the juror screening process easier with eJuror.

Judiciary Now

Juror Forms Now Online (4:56)

The federal Judiciary is making the juror screening process easier with eJuror. The web-based program allows jurors to submit their forms electronically. Jurors no longer have to rely on the mail or phone calls to communicate with the courts.

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11/05/10

Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) Protecects Court Employee's Jobs

Judiciary Now

Courts Support Employees Serving Their Country Overseas (3:46)

Federal court employees provide service to the public daily. Some are called to serve their country as well. Procurement specialist Marcus Caldwell is also a United States Marine. In March of 2003 Caldwell deployed to Iraq. Support from his court family helped Caldwell deal with being so far from home.

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10/18/10

Judges Testify Before Congress on Courthouse Space

Judiciary Now

Judges Testify Before Congress on Courthouse Space (3:46)

Two federal judges told a congressional subcommittee that a General Accountability Office report on the use of space in federal courthouses is misleading and could cause irreparable harm.

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10/14/10

Judiciary Assesses PACER Services

Judiciary Now

Federal Judiciary Makes Improvements to PACER Service (3:40)

The Judiciary is making several changes to the Public Access to Court Records (PACER) service based on results from an independent assessment.

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10/04/10

United States Supreme Court Starts New Term

United States Supreme Court Starts New Term (2:22)

The United States Supreme Court has started a new term on the first Monday in October for close to 100 years. Willliam Suter, the Clerk of the Supreme Court, explains why the term starts on this day.

09/28/10

Nuremberg Interpreter Recalls 1945 Trials

Judiciary Now

Nuremberg Interpreter Recalls Historic Trials (4:39)

Court interpreters have long been a fixture in federal courtrooms. Siegfried Ramler, one of the few surviving participants in the 1945 Nuremberg Trials, explains how an important form of courtroom interpreting was developed during the historic event.

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Related: Watch more from Ramler's speech recalling the Nuremberg Trials

09/23/10

Third Week Of July is Probation, Parole and Community Supervision Week

Judiciary Now

Judiciary Celebrates the Work of Pretrial and Probation Officers (2:10)

Probation and pretrial officers provide an invaluable service to communities across the country. The American Probation and Parole Association recently highlighted the work of thousands of men and women, who make up its probation and pretrial services, by celebrating National Probation, Parole, and Community Service Week.

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07/26/10

Planned Emergency Tests COOP

Judiciary Now

Planned Emergency Tests COOP (2:42)

Emergency Teams at the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts put their Continuity of Operations Plan into action for the federal government's 2010 Eagle Horizon exercise.

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06/03/10

Judiciary Announces PACER Improvements

Take a Tour

The New uscourts.gov (2:43)

We've made some big changes to uscourts.gov. Watch this tour to find out what's new, and how you can quickly and easily find information, resources and news from the federal Judiciary's website.

05/15/10

Judiciary Announces PACER Improvements

Judiciary Now

Judiciary Announces PACER Improvements (3:21)

Improvements to the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system will make it easier to search the massive electronic data base.

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04/15/10

Judiciary Now

FY 2011 Funding Request (4:14)

The federal judiciary asked a House subcommittee to adequately fund the courts in fiscal year 2011, which will begin October 1, 2010. The request represented the smallest funding increase in more than 20 years.

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03/18/10

Judiciary Now

Court Employees Attend COOP Workshop in Boston (3:28)

Nearly one hundred sixty court staff from two circuits gathered in Boston for a COOP workshop. Guest speakers included court staff who have experienced real emergencies. There was also a briefing on the H1N1 virus commonly known as Swine Flu.

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11/30/09

Judiciary Now

Offender Payment Enhanced Report Access Goes National (3:57)

The office of Probation and Pretrial Services released the Offender Payment Enhanced Report Access application. This web based application provides OPPS officers with near real-time access to offenders' fine and restitution payment records.

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11/12/09

Judiciary Now

Federal, State And Local Agencies Coordinate Emergency Response In Indiana (4:43)

Court staff in the Southern District of Indiana held a conference to help outline emergency response efforts across several agencies. The idea is to coordinate an efficient response to any natural disaster or emergency such as a pandemic. Beverly Hallberg reports.

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07/15/09

Judiciary Now

New Supervision Document Outlines Technologies (4:18)

The judiciary updated the Federal Location Monitoring Program for Defendants and Offenders, known as Monograph 113. The new information outlines several technologies that can enhance officers' ability to supervise individuals who are awaiting trial or are just released from prison.

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06/25/09

Judiciary Now

Court Offers Oral Arguments On-line (3:21)

The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals is offering oral arguments on-line via the court's web site. The public can also access the Seventh Circuit's audio on iTunes.

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05/28/09

Judiciary Now

Emergency Notification System is a Vital Part of Any COOP (4:43)

At the Western District of Washington district court, officials use the Emergency Notification System to alert staff of dangerous conditions. The ENS is a free to all courts through the Administrative Office in Washington, DC.

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05/13/09

Judiciary Now

Hundreds of Students Visit San Diego Courthouse for "Career Day" (3:27)

Staff from the Southern District of California hosted an outreach event at the district courthouse in San Diego. The "Career Day" event was a chance for high school students to visit with legal professionals and to learn about their jobs.

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04/24/09

Judiciary Now

Court's Learning Center Focuses on Judiciary's Role (2:36)

The federal courthouse in St. Louis has devoted 2,500 square feet to a judicial learning center, an interactive and engaging facility.

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03/12/09

Judiciary Now

Judiciary Warns Public About "Jury Phone Scam" (2:28)

Identity theft affects more than ten million Americans every year. In one scam that keeps popping up across the country, thieves pose as court employees and gain personal financial information from their victims over the phone.

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01/26/09