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Digital Audio and Video Court Recording

Effective May 1, 2007, the State Court Administrator no longer certifies the adequacy of recording equipment used in the trial courts. Instead, trial court recording systems must meet the standards published by the State Court Administrative Office. Standards for Digital Audio Recording Systems are at http://courts.michigan.gov/scao/resources/standards/da_stds.pdf and Standards for Digital Video Recording Systems are at http://courts.michigan.gov/scao/resources/standards/dv_stds.pdf. Courts are encouraged to work with system vendors to ensure their recording equipment complies with the standards. A checklist is provided within the standards as a tool for courts and vendors to use in assessing a recording system's compliance. Courts should develop appropriate policies and procedures governing the use of the systems they purchase. Procedures should be developed for backing up the files created by the system and periodically assessing the quality of the storage medium by testing archived files. A contingency process should also be established for backup or duplication of files in the event of obsolescence. Courts should rely on their vendor for support in developing these policies and should follow the vendor's recommended procedures designed for their specific system. Courts should refer to Component 24 of the Michigan Trial Court Case File Management Standards at http://courts.michigan.gov/scao/resources/standards/cf_stds.pdf for additional information regarding maintenance and storage of court recordings..
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Interactive Video Technology (IVT) for Specified Child Protective and Probate Proceedings
Effective May 1, 2007, the court may use two-way video technology to conduct specified child protective and probate proceedings. In delinquency proceedings the court may use interactive video technology to conduct hearings in which the court does not order a more restrictive placement or more restrictive treatment, and may be used to conduct preliminary hearings under MCR 3.935(A)(1), postidpositional progress reviews, and dispositional hearings. In child protective proceedings the court may use two-way interactive video technology to conduct preliminary hearings or review hearings. Probate courts may use two-way interactive video technology to conduct hearings concerning initial involuntary treatment, continuing mental health treatment, and petitions for guardianship involving persons receiving treatment in mental health facilities. See MCR 3.904 and 5.738a. Effective May 1, 2007, the court may also expand its use of IVT for additional hearings not provided for in MCR 3.904 and 5.738a by establishing a local administrative order pursuant to Administrative Order 2007-1. The local administrative order must describe the administrative

procedures for each type of hearing for which IVT will be used and it must be approved by the State Court Administrative Office. The use of two-way interactive video technology must be conducted in accordance with any requirements and guidelines established by the State Court Administrative Office.
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Video and Audio Technology in Criminal Proceedings Pursuant to MCR 6.006, district and circuit courts may use two-way interactive video technology to conduct the following proceedings between a courtroom and a prison, jail, or other location: initial arraignments on the warrant or complaint, arraignments on the information, pretrials conferences, pleas, sentencings for misdemeanor offenses, show cause hearings, waivers and adjournments of extradition, referrals for forensic determination of competency, and waivers and adjournments of preliminary examinations. As long as the defendant is either present in the courtroom or has waived the right to be present, on motion of either party, district courts may use telephonic, voice, or video conferencing, including two-way interactive video technology, to take testimony from an expert witness or, upon a showing of good cause, any person at another location in a preliminary examination. As long as the defendant is either present in the courtroom or has waived the right to be present, upon a showing of good cause, district and circuit courts may use two-way interactive video technology to take testimony from a person at another location in the following proceedings: (1) evidentiary hearings, competency hearings, sentencings, probation revocation proceedings, and proceedings to revoke a sentence that does not entail an adjudication of guilt, such as youthful trainee status; (2) with the consent of the parties, trials. A party who does not consent to the use of twoway interactive video technology to take testimony from a person at trial shall not be required to articulate any reason for not consenting. The use of telephonic, voice, video conferencing, or two-way interactive video technology, must be in accordance with any requirements and guidelines established by the State Court Administrative Office, and all proceedings at which such technology is used must be recorded verbatim by the court. See also information from the Michigan Department of Corrections for courts using video conferencing.