Berney Kubetz and Chris Uphouse were successful in a recent appeal to the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston in a First Amendment case with significant implications. The case arose out of the media’s delayed access to civil flings under the Maine Superior Court’s pilot electronic filing system. The Bangor daily News joined the Courthouse News Service in challenging the delays to access under the new electronic filing system.
Berney and Chris argued that under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution it is critical for the media to be able to timely inform the public of new court filings and relevant litigation affecting important public interests. In a case of first impression, the Federal District Court of Maine had dismissed the BDN’s lawsuit but the First Circuit Court of Appeals reversed, ruling that the claims deserved to be litigated and returned the case to the trial court for further proceedings.