Computerized Law Court Information System

Project and Seminar Material for Computer Science and Computer Engineering

Computerized Law Court Information System


Abstract


This research work is focused on the development of a law court information system, using magistrate court, Ikot Ubo as a case study. The system was necessary because of the problem of manual system of recording and managing law court cases information. Information cannot be easily retrieved when needed. To solve this problem, an automated system is needed. A law court informationsystem is an Electronic filing system for the management of the records of court cases, and it offers increased clerk efficiency, immediate response to judges’ requests, timely access to information and potential storage savings. The software development methodology used is spiral model while the programming language used is Visual Basic 6.0


Chapter One


1.0 Introduction

This chapter presents the introduction of court proceedings management system. It contains the theoretical background, aim and objectives of the study, statement of the problem, purpose of the study, aim and objectives of the study, research questions, scope and significance of the study, organization of the research and definition of terms.

There are a number of trends and issues affecting courts that creates an impetus for greater use of available technology. As legal practice has become more technologically advanced, pressure mounts on the courts to join the flow of technological progress. One aspect of this impetus for technological growth is increased interest in implementation of e-filing and/or a more or less paperless court process. A court proceedings management system is an e-filling (electronic filing) system that enables the record and management of court cases. A court proceedings management system can provide for more effective use of resources for data input and retrieval, as well as in system deployment and maintenance. This system can assist the court in meeting current demands for information by making access to case and court data more effective and efficient. A well designed court proceedings management system will provide core functionality that provides meaningful benefits to courts. It provides efficient data entry, more effective data retrieval, better and enhanced information access [1].

In a court, information is everything. The verdict of the judge for instance and the name of the plaintiff, defendant, witness etc are all relevant information that needs to be stored for future reference. Many courts especially in Nigeria are not adopting Information and Communication Technology to facilitate the recording and retrieval of information despite the importance. Technological developments in the world have made organizations to shift from manual systems to computerized systems. With due consideration to software applications such as database management which enables large amount of information to be stored, it is therefore important as organizations are looking for easier, faster and less expensive ways of managing information. This background has necessitated the development of this research study [2].


1.1 Theoretical Background

The technologies adopted to implement the system are Visual BASIC 6.0 programming language and MySQL. The programming language provides the tools needed to create a graphical user interface that will be used to capture court case records. The interface will in turn be linked to the database. The source code below for instance shows the command to save a court case record to the database.

Private Sub Command1_Click()

Adodc1.Recordset.Update

MsgBox “SAVED, CASE REGISTERED”

End Sub

Fig 1.1: Message box


1.2 Statement of Problem

The major problem that gave rise to this research project are face by staff of magistrate court, ikot ubo in Nsit ubium.

The problems are:

  1. Accumulation of paper files which may get missing and problem in the management of case files are some of the problems faced by courts.
  2. It is also imperative to note that there is a significant level of delay in the retrieval of needed information to make informed decisions.
  3. Unauthorized usage and access to important case records by intruders and impersonators in the ministry.

It is in view of these problems that this research work is carried out to improve the services of courts by developing a court proceedings management system.


1.3 Aim / Objectives of the Study

The aim of the study is to develop application software that would handle court case record management system.

The following are the objectives of the study to achieve the aim:

  1. To develop a database application to store court case records
  2. To develop a system that can be used to retrieve needed information of court cases.
  3. To develop an effective system that can be used to update court case records.
  4. To develop a system that can replace the manual system of saving court case records.

1.4 Scope of the Study

This study covers the development of Computerized law court information system, a case study of magistrate court Ikot ubo in NSIT UBIUM. It is limited to an information system to manage court case records.


1.5 Significance of the Study

The significance of the study is that it will facilitate the easy storage and retrieval of needed information pertaining to court case records. This will in turn boost the operations of the courts and make them operate professionally.


1.6 Organization of the Research

The research project has been arranged in the following order:

  1. Chapter one starts with the introduction, theoretical background, and statement of problem, aims and objectives of the study, organization of research and definition of terms.
  2. Chapter two focuses on the review of related literature.
  3. Chapter three is concerned with the system analysis and design which includes: Research Methodology, System Analysis, Analysis of the Existing System, Problem of the Existing System, Analysis of the Proposed System, Advantages of the Proposed System, and Disadvantages of the Proposed System, System Design, Input Layout, Program Flowchart, and Output Format.
  4. And also Chapter four consists of system implementation and documentation which are system design, diagram, choice of program language, analysis of modules, programming environment, hardware/software requirement and implementation.
  5. Chapter five contains summary, conclusion, constraint of the study and recommendation.

1.7 Definition of Terms

Court:

Meeting where legal judgments are made. Also seen as an official body that has authority to try cases, resolve disputes, or make other legal decisions.

Case:

A matter examinee or judged in a court of law.

Crime:

An action prohibited by law or failure to act as required by law.

Plaintiff:

Somebody who brings a law suit against somebody else (defendant) in court.

Defendant:

A person or company required to answer charges in a court.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.0 Introduction

This chapter presents the summary, conclusion, constraints of the study and useful recommendations are offered based on the research study.


5.1 Summary

With the adoption of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), by virtually every sector of the human society including courts, it is imperative that courts that have not adopted the use of electronic filing systems should do so. With due consideration to the factor of time, it becomes a matter of priority for courts to adopt the system to enhance their operations.

A court is a form of tribunal, often a governmental institution with the authority to adjucate legal disputes between parties and carries out the administration of justice in civil, criminal and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law in both common law and civil law systems.

A court proceedings management system is a computerized system that enables courts to record data/information pertaining to court cases for easy retrieval. It eliminates the need for the traditional flat file system that results in the accumulation of paper files that can easily get missing.


5.2 Constraints of the Study

In the course of the research work, some challenges were faced such as:

Time:

The time given for the research work is too short. A research of this magnitude requires time to be properly executed

Materials:

Few materials were found pertaining to the research study, and this limited the bulk of the literature.

Finances:

The high cost of transportation to different libraries as well as the high cost of internet browsing stood as limitation of the study.


5.3 Conclusion

A law court information system is a necessity for all courts that are determined to be efficient in the management of case records in the court. The advantage of instant information retrieval and verification and the easy updating of records are reasons that showcase the development and application of court proceedings management system.


5.4 Recommendation

The following recommendations are offered based on the findings of the study:

  1. Courts should take advantage of information technology to automate office operations
  2. Computer programmers and software developers should be contracted for the development of a court proceedings management system to meet the needs of the court.
  3. Court personnel should be trained on how to use the computer system.
  4. The government should treat the need for adoption of ICT in court proceedings management as important in the management process of courts.
  5. Computer systems should be made available to courts by government.

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