Updated May 12, 2020
While technology advances on a daily basis and something new is always around the corner, lawyers seem to be the type that is reluctant to embrace new technology. The advances have made the practice of law a different ballgame and allow for leveraging of both knowledge and labor by law firms.
Trial attorneys have new tools that make their jobs much easier and also less expensive. Trial exhibits can now be made at a very low cost and produced in discovery almost instantaneously.
One of the newest tools has been the ability to show trial exhibits and demonstrative evidence by use of an iPad. There are many different “apps” that allow an attorney at the touch of a finger to display and highlight documents, photographs, and other evidence. At one time, not that long ago, such evidence required the in-house implementation of very sophisticated software or the outsourcing to trial technology consultants for the trial of the case.
One of the best trial apps for the iPad is the app called “TrialPad“. One of the best features of the trial pad out is the ability to add a hot document with its important parts already highlighted and/or emphasized. This allows the attorney to simply touch their finger to the page and the judge and jury see the document as annotated.
Getting documents into the Trial Pad app is also seamless through integration with dropbox and other cloud services built into the application.
Other technology tools have improved both personal injury and other law practice areas and some highlights for those include digital dictation from such programs as Dragon Dictate, Evernote for keeping of important information, and many different “cloud” practice management options for keeping track of matters and clients. Unfortunately, for some Mac attorneys, Dragon Dictate is no longer supported for Macs.
Billing applications for those attorneys who bill have been outstanding at reducing the time necessary to produce an accurate and attractive bill and also keep track of the time for the firm and individual attorneys and staff. Online billing reduces the costs and accuracy of this is probably probable and administrative function.
Attorneys who embrace technology must budget for the learning curve in order to benefit from the technology. The hidden cost is not in the hardware or the software, but in the time it takes to learn the new technology and convince skeptics to try the technology.
Back in the early 80s, the fax machine was new on the scene and was considered “high tech” at the time. Today scanning has largely eliminated the need for a fax machine and online options rapidly replacing the old fax machine. In today’s environment, there are two kinds of people those who embrace technology and those who get left behind.
Baumgartner Law Firm
6711 Cypress Creek Parkway
Houston, Texas 77069