Formatting your e-bundle pagination

Formatting your e-bundle pagination

Not paginating an e-bundle properly causes confusion but the confusion starts with “what is page one?”

Formatting e-bundle pagination properly is a top concern for our clients, and rightly too, when a case may be sanctioned.

It’s a natural conclusion to make that we want our electronic bundles to mimic the paper version of a ring binder. Nobody would put a page number on the title page of a ring binder, would they?

But since e-bundles have been mandated, the interpretation of the rules by different courts is now causing some confusion.

For the sake of this exercise, let’s forget paper bundles ever existed, and simply focus on a single PDF document.

The PDF document must have continuous page numbering throughout. There are a variety of instructions on the internet on  how to insert continuous page numbering②, and how that numbering must be linked to the document index.

To add more confusion about pagination, if the bundle is split into sections, the index can have a different page numbering scheme③.

Overall, the page numbers will never match the number of the page of the PDF itself①. So, what do we do about that?

We can format e-bundling pagination to appear as you (and the court) would like it.

Obviously, it helps to know which court requires which specific pagination format.  This article contains useful links t

This image is an example of a standard bundle to be submitted to the Family Court. Its layout mimics the old-fashioned ring binder and the PDF is navigable from the bookmarks, the index page and simple scrolling.

If you require a bundle with a different pagination format it can be made for you, just let us know how you (and the court) want it formatted.  You can learn more information about preparing your ebundle here.

Update: Court guidance has been updated on 29th November 2021 and includes reference to page numbering.  In particular: 

“All pages in an e-bundle must be numbered by computer-generated numbering, not by hand. The numbering should start at page 1 for the first page of the bundle (whether or not that is part of an index) and the numbering must follow sequentially to the last page of the bundle, so that the pagination matches the pdf numbering. If a hard copy of the bundle is produced, the pagination must match the e-bundle.”

So that we can follow this request, we will no longer include a cover page to the bundle and page number 1 will appear on the first page of the index.  

e-bundle pagination
How to prepare your e-Bundle

How to prepare your e-Bundle

How to prepare your e-bundle

Follow these steps and you can your single PDF of your bundle will meet the requirements of HM Courts & Tribunals Service.

      1. You may already have an index for your bundle but if not, we will split your bundle into sections: pleadings, correspondence, evidence.
      2. We will re-name your index in the PDF bundle to follow your index and will always complete a date column where possible.  You can be assured that your bundle index is hyperlinked and properly paginated for the Courts and opponents to easily navigate the file.
      3. We work with what is best for you for transferring your files.  You may prefer to simply email us your documents or,  if there is a particularly large amount, a large file transfer facility can be used.
      4. If you have documents already in a digital format other than PDF, say Word, Outlook emails, images, please send them to us.  We can convert any format to PDF in the bundling process.
      5. If you have multiple documents contained in a single PDF please let us know if any pages are to be removed or the PDF split.
      6. Adding and removing documents to your bundle is made with minimum fuss.  Simply contact us or email your latest instructions.

We can prepare your e-bundle for you and the cost is from as little as £77.

You can dictate or email your requirements and send your documents to us and we can prepare your bundle for you.  Check out our pricing for more information.

Cost-effective electronic bundling services

Our e-Bundling-As-A-Service is for lawyers and solicitors who urgently need to submit an HMCTS compliant PDF bundle of documents.  Submitting a bundle of documents is usually last minute in case a trial is adjourned or the matter settled.  So it stands to reason that some people would rather not invest time and money in case those costs are wasted.

That said, some spending is necessary to get the job done, but learning new technology may hinder and slow down the process.

Here’s the thing: electronic bundling is easy, it’s fast and it can also save you tons of time and money when compared to the traditional paper version.

Our bundling partner, Zylpha, have given us some key requirements that courts and tribunals need.

  • The documents in the bundle must be the subject of OCR (optical character recognition). That means the bundle can be searched by typing in a key word or phrase.
  • All documents should appear in portrait mode. If the original is in landscape then it should be inserted so that it can be read with a 90 degree rotation clockwise and no document should be inserted upside down.
  • The default view for all pages should be 100%.
  • All items should be bookmarked to be easily navigable in the index.
  • All pages should be numbered, including the index.

This list is not exhaustive but we’ve pointed out these top requirements for a simple reason.  To create a bundle without any software assistance is difficult and time consuming, especially if your bundle needs to be updated and edited at a later date.

The demonstration video below shows how easy the application is to use.  However, sometimes time is scarce and urgency is great, so installing and learning technology may be difficult in those circumstances.  That’s where we can help you.