Second Internet Court Opens in Beijing

The second Internet court in China opened its doors in Beijing on Sept. 9, as the country looks to better address disputes and problems caused by the fast-growing cyberspace.

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The Beijing Internet Court, which is located in the Fengtai District of the capital, will mainly handle Internet and intellectual property rights cases, such as disputes involving online loans, online shopping contracts and online copyright issues, according to a statement by the Supreme People’s Court.

The court is reportedly equipped with advanced technologies that allow litigants to attend the court trials from home on an online litigation platform. If the parties refuse online trials, however, the court also conducts offline trials.

Now, the Internet Court is staffed with 38 judges with an average of ten years trial experience and will be open 24 hours a day through its digital litigation platform, said She Guiqing, deputy head of Beijing Internet Court.

Rulings of the Internet Court can be appealed at an intermediate court or a special court, such as the Beijing Intellectual Property Court.

The Beijing Internet Court aims to provide more efficient legal services to the city’s rapidly growing Internet activity. Beijing is home to a great number of Chinese Internet giants, including, Baidu, and Sina. From January through August this year, 37,631 Internet-related cases were filed in Beijing, a 24.4 percent year-on-year increase, according to the Beijing High People’s Court.

The first court dedicated to online cases was opened last August in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province. So far, the Hangzhou Internet Court has handled more than 11,000 cases, of which over 9,600 have concluded, according to CGTN. The average trial lasted 38 days, about half as long as in conventional courts.

A third Internet court will be opening this month in Guangzhou, as state media reported.