TechnoLawyer NewsWire
So many products, so little time. TL NewsWire discusses and links to hot new products and services for lawyers and law office administrators.
Informative and jargon-free, each TL NewsWire article enables you to quickly understand the function of each product, and zero in on its most notable features. In each issue, you can easily revisit previous articles thanks to convenient links.

Every December, we publish the TL NewsWire Top 25 Products of the Year Awards as chosen by TL NewsWire subscribers — including you if you become a subscriber.

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Recent Issues
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Synergy Matters Automates the Capture of Client-Related Documents and Email

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers document and email manegement software that integrates with Microsoft Office and scanners to consolidate all client-related data in one location (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of ediscovery software for quickly and inexpensively collecting and reviewing documents and email in small cases, a cloud practice management app with desktop-class features and per-case rather than per-user pricing, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Even the most detail-oriented lawyers find it challenging to keep all the information associated with a matter in one convenient location. You shouldn't have to develop elaborate systems to achieve this. Instead, software should do this work for you.

Synergy Matters 3.0 … in One Sentence

Launching this week, Legal Matters Software's Synergy Matters 3.0 is a document and email management system that automates the consolidation of all client-related data.

The Killer Feature

You can begin using Synergy Matters immediately after importing your client and matter information from your accounting software. As users work on matters, Synergy Matters prompts them to import their existing documents. The Outlook add-in works similarly, enabling you to import email and attachments. Legal Matters Software President John Ryan tells me that most law firms get up and running in less than a day, often just two hours.

Once you import a matter's documents and email, you can grant access rights to matters and organize the information within matters using nested folders as you see fit. From this point forward, a number of tools keep all new documents and email within Synergy Matters. Automatic email capture occurs whether you initiate messages from within a matter in Synergy Matters or from within Outlook. In the latter scenario, the Outlook add-in enables you to attach documents from Synergy Matters and save your message in the corresponding matter. A similar Microsoft Word add-in captures all new client-related documents.

Integration with scanners helps you go paperless. Built-in OCR makes these scanned PDF files searchable. Synergy Matters also captures incoming and outgoing faxes.

"The intuitive nature of Synergy Matters makes training new staff easy, and having the same interface for bringing in emails, scans, faxes and downloaded research means the documents all end up in the correct place," says Troy Berg, Manager, Information Technology at Doak Shirreff.

Other Notable Features

Synergy Matters also offers new collaboration tools. When you use the For Review tool to send a document to a colleague, Synergy Matters marks the document as out for review and notifies your colleague. If your colleague makes changes, Synergy Matters creates a new version. Click the History button for a complete audit trail of who worked on the document and when. You can revert to any prior version as well as create a new version with its own history.

"Synergy Matters 3.0 is the result of lawyers working closely with us to enhance their workflows," says Ryan. "In particular, the For Review process offers foolproof internal collaboration with an audit trail."

Synergy Matters' dashboard lists your active cases within the past 30 days. The search bar enables you to find any case. Within matters, the new Chronological View lists all the files in reverse chronological order regardless of their location within a folder.

What Else Should You Know?

Other features of Synergy Matters include Combine as PDF to merge selected documents into a single PDF file, automatic time capture of your activity for billing or proof of work when splitting fees, ethical walls, a notes tickler within each matter, and cost recovery. Synergy Matters runs on Windows PCs. Pricing starts at $125 per month for up to five users. Learn more about Synergy Matters 3.0.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

MetaJure Spotlight Makes Early Case Assessments Fast and Financially Feasible

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers ediscovery software for quickly and inexpensively collecting and reviewing documents and email in small cases (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a cloud practice management app with desktop-class features and per-case rather than per-user pricing, a practice management system that automatically captures email correspondence, integrates with Outlook, and offers a secure client portal, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Early case assessments and internal investigations can save time and minimize liability. These situations call for speed, not perfection. You want to quickly search the email and documents of one person or at most a few custodians. Using a document review platform with lots of bells and whistles at this stage can seem like fishing off a supertanker.

MetaJure SPOTLIGHT … in One Sentence

Launched recently, MetaJure SPOTLIGHT is lightweight ediscovery software designed to capture data from specific devices and make it searchable.

The Killer Feature

SPOTLIGHT costs as little as $1,000 per case regardless of the number of custodians or the volume of data. Companies can install it locally on a server or use it in the cloud (hosting by LexisNexis Managed Data Services is also an option; additional charges may apply). Ideally, companies have a retention policy and install the free SPOTLIGHT Agent on every computer they deploy to facilitate collection at any given time. Alternatively, you can install the Agent onto custodian computers whose data you need to review on an ad-hoc basis.

Either way, the Agent captures all email and local documents, and sends this data to the server. SPOTLIGHT can also collect data from billing systems, document management systems, file servers, and other data stores in an organization. The software automatically performs OCR where needed using ABBYY technology, and parses metadata such as to, from, cc in email messages to support advanced search features. This capture process takes a few hours after which you can begin running searches.

"SPOTLIGHT gives lawyers an easy, powerful tool to quickly gain insights from a mass of documents, emails and other materials," says MetaJure CEO Rob Arnold. "While every case requires smart and thorough analysis, not every case justifies expensive ediscovery software. SPOTLIGHT is the ideal, value priced document search and analysis tool for small cases and internal investigations."

Other Notable Features

SPOTLIGHT runs in any web browser, offering a search interface similar to other MetaJure products not to mention Google. To the left you'll find several filters that you can use to browse documents or to narrow search results. Location filters enable you to focus on a custodian or a specific data source. File Type filters include email, Word, PDF, PowerPoint, and Excel. As intimated above, SPOTLIGHT supports Boolean searches such as author, recipient, exact, fuzzy, proximity, and wild card.

The search results lists folders whose names match your search at the top because of the strong likelihood of relevance. Below any matching folders, you'll find documents and email messages listed by relevance accompanied by their date. You can list documents by date instead.

SPOTLIGHT preserves folder paths, groups duplicates for more efficient review, and maintains the connection between email messages and attachments for context. Click a document to view it in the Text Preview Pane on the right side of the page. Clicking the Open button opens the document in its native application.

What Else Should You Know?

When you hit the jackpot, clicking the Export Results button packages all the documents in the search results into a ZIP file that you can share and review offline. Learn more about MetaJure SPOTLIGHT.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Case.one Brings Desktop-Class Features and a Disruptive Pricing Model to Cloud Practice Management

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a cloud practice management app with desktop-class features and per-case rather than per-user pricing (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a practice management system that automatically captures email correspondence, integrates with Outlook, and offers a secure client portal, cloud litigation management software that enables you and your team to analyze the key documents, testimony, and witnesses in your cases, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Legacy desktop practice management software requires a significant upfront investment, which can contribute to cash flow problems at a new law firm. Cloud practice management software alleviates this pressure somewhat but most products cost just as much the first month as they do a year later. Ideally, the cost of practice management software should align with your firm's growth.

Case.one … in One Sentence

Case.one is a cloud practice management system with desktop-class customization and a unique per-case pricing model designed to reduce costs.

The Killer Feature

Case.one is free for up to 10 active cases. Once your firm uses Case.one to manage 11 or more cases, it costs 99 cents per case per month. This all-inclusive price includes unlimited users, storage, and technical support. Even better, Case.one offers discounted pre-paid plans.

Most competing products charge about $50 per user per month. Case.one's per case model and discounted packages makes it less expensive by comparison. For example, a high-volume immigration firm with 5 lawyers, 10 paralegals, and 300 active cases would spend about $750 per month for a per-user product versus $197 per month for Case.one. A low volume firm staffed the same but with only 50 active cases would spend the same $750 per month for a per-user product versus only $35 per month for Case.one.

Other Notable Features

Case.one greets you with the Firm Feed when you login, a tickler that provides an overview of upcoming deadlines and activity in your cases. Similar, more focused feeds exist in each of Case.one's major areas — Billing, Calendar, Cases, Contacts, Files, and Tasks.

CEO Bahar Ansari describes Case.one as "second generation cloud practice management." During my demo, she takes care to point out Case.one's desktop-class features. Remember the PBX integrations of yore? Case.one integrates with VoIP telephone systems so that you can click to call and automatically bill the time. Acknowledging the financial controls many firms have, Case.one enables you to create a billing approval process. The billing system supports billing codes, client-specific rates, contingency and flat fees, expenses, and origination credit. You can customize your bills, deliver them via email or PDF, accept credit cards via LawPay, and automatically record bills in QuickBooks.

Case.one helps automate work product too. Practice Area Libraries save you time by adding data fields, templates, and workflows you're likely to need. You can add your own custom fields, and create your own workflows, which consist of groups of related tasks such as for client intake. Assign tasks within a workflow to members of your team, and create dependencies so that completion of a task automatically triggers and assigns the next task in the sequence. Built-in document assembly automates the creation of documents required by a task.

In addition to its desktop-class functionality, Case.one also takes advantage of its modern underpinnings. A client portal facilitates secure collaboration and communication with clients. When Case.one recognizes a common activity, it can prefill much of your time entry and even offer a suggested time based on historical data. Dropbox integration makes all your documents available, and Office 365 and G Suite integration syncs your calendar, contacts, and tasks across all devices.

What Else Should You Know?

Reports in Case.one provide in-depth analysis of your firm, including productivity. Administrator tools enable you to create roles and control access rights. Case.one or one of its authorized consultants can help you with data migration and customization if needed. Learn more about Case.one.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

LEAP Brings Automated Email Organization and Secure Communications to Practice Management

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a practice management system that automatically captures email correspondence, integrates with Outlook, and offers a secure client portal (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of cloud litigation management software that enables you and your team to analyze the key documents, testimony, and witnesses in your cases, a new research service that collects primary and secondary sources related to cybersecurity and privacy issues, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Practice management software sits at the heart of your law firm. Some would characterize it as the beating heart of your law firm, especially when used for timekeeping, billing, accounting, document assembly, and other vital functions. But email also resides at the heart of your firm. It seems like these two core technologies should work well together.

LEAP … in One Sentence

LEAP is a cloud-based practice management system with a new suite of email tools, especially for Outlook users.

The Killer Feature

LEAP automatically stores your incoming and outgoing email messages and those of your colleagues — including attachments. This feature works with Office 365.

Let's say you draft a Word document within LEAP and want to email it to a client. From within LEAP, right click on the document and select "Email" or "PDF and Email" depending on whether you want to send it in Word or PDF format. LEAP auto-creates the subject line based on the corresponding matter, which you can edit if you wish. You can attach other documents or save your draft to finish later. After sending the message, LEAP prompts you for a time entry and automatically files the message in the correct matter. If you switch over to Outlook, your iPhone, etc, you'll find this message in your "Sent Mail" folder.

If your client replies, LEAP automatically captures and files this reply and all future email correspondence in the correct matter. It doesn't matter which email app or device your client uses. This automatic capture even survives changes to the subject line and additional recipients. LEAP performs this magic through an invisible code in the initial message designed to withstand the rigors of an email discussion.

Other Notable Features

The LEAP integration with Outlook adds a number of functions to the ribbon. For example, you can access any document in LEAP from within Outlook, attach it to a message, and bill the time spent writing the message. When you receive email initiated by clients and other external contacts, you can file these messages from Outlook into the correct matter in LEAP and bill the time you spend reading them. Both LEAP and Outlook contain all your contacts, calendar appointments, and tasks.

LEAP's email functionality also works from the free mobile app for iPad, iPhone, and Android. If a client needs a document when you're out of the office, you can send it to your client from the mobile app, bill your time, and capture all subsequent communications.

When you need a more secure form of communication than email, you can use LawConnect, the client portal built into LEAP. Right click on the document or folder you want to share and select LawConnect instead of emailing it. A few more clicks and you'll create a secure web portal in which your client can view the document and communicate with you. LawConnect notifies you when your client has viewed a shared document, and enables you to manage your client's access rights (you can revoke access anytime).

What Else Should You Know?

LEAP offers a full suite of practice management features in addition to these communications tools, including a growing library of forms and accompanying document assembly engine as alluded to above. LEAP can also design and host your website. Learn more about LEAP.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Everchron Puts Critical Case Information and Analysis at Your Fingertips

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers cloud litigation management software that enables you and your team to analyze the key documents, testimony, and witnesses in your cases (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a new research service that collects primary and secondary sources related to cybersecurity and privacy issues, a document management system with a new platform for securely sharing documents with clients and others outside of your firm, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Litigators spend most of their time analyzing key documents, deposition testimony, and legal research. Many litigators are familiar with CaseMap, which became dominant last decade. However, CaseMap hasn't transitioned to the cloud, leaving an opening for a new entrant.

Everchron … in One Sentence

Everchron is cloud-based litigation management software that enables you and your team to manage, analyze and collaborate around important case information and documents.

The Killer Feature

Director of Business Development Alex Karpman begins my demo by pointing out that with data volumes growing, litigators need software to help them analyze and act on the most important documents that come out of a document review. He then describes Everchron as "collaborative, intuitive, mobile, and secure" with "intelligent linking, analysis, and reports."

This "intelligent linking" is best exemplified by Everchron's Witnesses feature. In the course of adding documents and testimony to Everchron, tagging these items with issues, adding annotations, etc., Everchron automatically generates a profile of every witness called a Witness File.

Click on a witness and you'll see that person's Witness File. Charts show the documents related to that witness and their importance and favorability to the case. Drill down further to view interactions with other witnesses and other analytics. The Witness File also links to declarations, testimony, and witness statements, and enables your team to add additional notes about the witness. You can export this analysis in spreadsheet form as well as all related documents.

"Once you start using Everchron, it is hard to imagine practicing without it," says Alison Plessman, partner at Hueston Hennigan. "As a lawyer, I'm often buried in work and have to prepare for depositions in very tight timeframes. With Everchron, in a matter of a few clicks, I can see all of the evidence and master file documents associated with a particular witness, as well as a breakdown of the issues and players relevant to that particular witness."

Other Notable Features

Everchron offers two import mechanisms. You can import documents and email from load files generated by discovery review platforms such as Relativity, DISCO, Logikcull, Concordance, and Summation. A mapping wizard preserves all tags and metadata. You can also drag and drop files, and edit the metadata and add witnesses on the fly.

Most of your work occurs in Everchron's Evidence tab, designed for building key fact and document chronologies. Each document in your case chronology appears in a viewer on the left with a suite of tools on the right. Use the tools to analyze the document, write a descriptive title (e.g., "The Smoking Gun Email") and summary, append comments, apply issue tags, etc. You can also apply nondestructive highlights to the document itself in the viewer.

Click the main Evidence button and you'll zoom out to the case chronology table listing all documents, their summaries, associated witnesses, issues, and other analytics. Use the search filter to narrow the list — for example, view only the most favorable hot documents. Export selected documents with or without their accompanying metadata for offline review by a client, expert, etc.

"Everchron's collaborative litigation management software puts case-critical information and analysis at a lawyer's fingertips," says Everchron CEO Ofer Bleiweiss. "With its intuitive search interface, dynamic key document chronologies, and automatically generated Witness Files, lawyers can quickly find and communicate relevant information to team members wherever and whenever they need it."

What Else Should You Know?

Everchron's Master File enables you to store all other documents related to a case such as briefs, court orders, notices of appearance, etc. PACER integration can automatically import documents from federal dockets. Learn more about Everchron.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

As a fairly unsophisticated technophile, I find the TechnoLawyer Newswire helps explain new software, gadgets, and other products in language I can understand. Plus, it always provides links to a fuller explanation of the product or service. All in all, a very helpful read for an old lawyer trying to keep up.
- Jack P. Doran, Esq., Law Office of Jack Doran
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