The Technical Applications in Smart Trials of Beijing Internet Court

english.bjinternetcourt.gov.cn | Updated: 2021-12-21


Editor's note: Jointly organized by UNCITRAL RCAP and the Department of Justice of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the 4th UNCITRAL Asia Pacific Judicial Summit kicked off in early November. Lu Ning, a judge from the Beijing Internet Court (BIC) attended the judicial round table upon invitation via video link and introduced technical applications in BIC's smart trials. Below is her full speech.


Ladies and gentlemen,

Good morning!

Thank you for inviting me and giving me this opportunity to speak before you. I would like to take this chance to introduce the use and benefits of  technical applications in smart trials of Beijing Internet Court.

In the internet era, with the development and application of information and communication technology, the network has an all-encompassing impact on social economy. The interactions between people and transactions between business operators are becoming increasingly dependent on the network, and so is the legal relationship between the two sides. As business and interactions shift from offline to online, more disputes occur online, which calls for fast and efficient dispute resolution. Against such background, Beijing Internet Court was officially established on September 9th, 2018.

Since its establishment, Beijing Internet Court has been guided by the in-depth integration of technology and the judicial system. On the one hand, it has made immense efforts to explore new trial mechanisms and make online trials more intelligent and standard; on the other hand, it has promulgated rules through adjudication, to promote the healthy and orderly development of the cyberspace.

Beijing Internet Court has innovated the online trial model to provide parties with convenient, cost-effective, efficient and environment-friendly judicial service.

We have worked with 25 internet companies to build an Electronic Litigation Platform using the internet, Big Data, artificial intelligence and block-chain technology, and have developed an online trial model. Unlike traditional courts, which can only accept cases during working hours, the E-litigation Platform has made the whole litigation process available online at anytime and anywhere, including filing cases, automatically generating indictments, submitting evidence, mediating, holding hearings via remote video, going on trials, delivering electronic documents, settling enforcement cases, and transferring appeal files.

This platform has brought the following benefits to the parties:

Firstly, it has made litigation more convenient. The E-litigation Platform breaks time and space barriers and provides 24-hour legal service. The parties are no longer restricted by the working hours of the court when submitting an application for case filing and evidence. The parties can appear in court without leaving their home or workplace,  and no longer have to travel long distance. So far, the Platform has received a total of 45 million visits. All the applications for case filing are submitted online, 30% of which are submitted on non-working days or at non-working hours on working days. More than 90% of litigation fees are  paid online.

Secondly, it has improved work efficiency. The rate of online court hearings reached 99.9%, and only 52 are held offline. The court hearing lasts 37 minutes averagely, and the handling of each case lasts 68 days averagely. The service rate of electronic  judgments is more than 90%.

Thirdly, it is energy-saving and environment-friendly. The online trial mode launched by the Beijing Internet Court has saved travel mileage up to more than 29 million km, and reduced carbon emissions by 161 tons. The average cost per person for each case has been cut by nearly 800 yuan, and travel time by 16 hours.

Next, I will introduce some typical technical applications.

The legal knowledge graph technology supports online automatic generation of documents. This allows judges of Beijing Internet Court to write standard legal documents more efficiently and accurately. Also, it helps the plaintiff automatically generate an indictment by answering a few questions and providing key information. The parties can also learn about the litigation risks.

To address the problem of digital evidence in internet cases being easily deleted and falsified, and the difficulty in preserving, collecting and verifying the evidence, Beijing Internet Court has initiated the construction of a block-chain "Tian Ping Chain". The Tian Ping Chain enables digital evidence to be stored credibly and validated efficiently. This reduces the costs of the parties for seeking justice and makes it easy for judges to accept electronic data. Once a piece of electronic data is generated, its hash value is written into the Tian Ping Chain, and the user obtains the storage number of the data in the Tian Ping Chain. When the electronic data relates to a case under the jurisdiction of Beijing Internet Court, the user can submit the storage number and the original electronic data.

The integrity and storage time of the electronic data are verified automatically at the Tian Ping Chain background. This greatly cuts the time required for judges to accept electronic data.

The "AI virtual judge" can simultaneously provide voice and text answers, so as to promote the intelligent litigation service with human qualities. Currently, “AI virtual judge” can answer 82 consultation questions in four categories.

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, most traditional courts can not hold court hearings. With the help of a virtual courtroom, the judge can hold a case trial at home, which ensures efficiency and safety.

Facial recognition: when users registers on the E-litigation Platform, they need to authenticate their real names and pass facial recognition to avoid registration with false account information.

Speech recognition: by using this technology, the trial records can be automatically generated, and there is no need for the clerk to type word by word.  It realizes the transformation from the speech to text, using which the judge can produce the first draft of a judgment, and complete the final version following simple revision.

Mobile Micro Court APP. It provides five litigation services including “intelligent litigation, filing cases at hand, online mediation, video trial and online evidence uploading.” Only by using the app embedded in WeChat, the parties can realize online filing, case inquiry, online service, online mediation, online trial and other more than 20 functions, so as to enjoy the  one-stop smart litigation self-services on the platform anytime and anywhere.

Pop-up notification service platform. This platform can automatically display a notification served by the court at the top of the mobile phone screen when the screen is locked. The user must read the notification and click "Confirm" before continuing to use his/her phone. This ensures that notifications are served effectively. 

To sum up, Beijing Internet Court will update the functions and user experience of the E-litigation Platform, and give play to the positive role of technology in judicial justice and judicial efficiency, in order to promote the legalization and standardization of cyberspace governance.

Thank you !

The presentation PPT.