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Chinese court uses a blockchain-based system to record hearings

Known for its smart court system, blockchain is now being used in one of China's regular courts as well.

Image by skeeze from Pixabay

Thu, 16 Jul 2020, 04:48 am UTC

While China has banned cryptocurrency trading and mining, the country has been actively promoting the use of blockchain, the technology behind these digital currencies. In fact, China is considered a pioneer in using the application of this technology for its judicial system.

China made waves when it introduced smart courts, also known as internet courts. The system relies on artificial intelligence and blockchain technology to decide millions without the need of citizens to actually appear on court.

Aside from its role in smart courts, blockchain is also making its way into the regular courts as well. One of the most recent projects involving the technology is located in Shanghai where a local court uses a blockchain-based system to record hearings, according to Coingeek.

In a forum on judicial reforms held by the Shanghai high court, it was revealed that the Minhang District People’s Court is a pioneer when it comes to using blockchain to record hearings. In fact, the platform was already tried and tested when the Minhang court tuckered an equity transfer contract dispute.

Minhang’s blockchain-based recording system is capable of generating the necessary files instantaneously. “The metadata table which records the file name, file size, file generation time and other information of the court record files and written materials is generated instantly,” the publication noted.

The system’s efficiency was demonstrated during the equity transfer contract dispute. After the judge instructed both parties to sign and confirm the metadata, “the audio-visual conversion record, the metadata table confirmed by the parties’ signature and other materials were completely presented in the ‘electronic file’ of the case” in just a minute.

Last year, China’s smart courts have settled over 3 million cases between March and October. This cemented the nation’s leadership on the use of blockchain in the judicial system.

The first internet court was set up in 2017 in the eastern city of Hangzhou but the smart court system has rapidly expanded since then. At the moment, the system has 1.16 user and the number of lawyers registered in the smart courts' system has ballooned to 73,200 based on data from the white paper titled “Chinese Courts and Internet Judiciary,” according to Xinhuanet.com.

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