When attorneys practice in areas of law that are heavily form-based, they spend a lot of time drafting, creating, and editing documents. Often, they have to fill out the same documents many times for different clients or complete the same document many times for the same client. If you’re not using some type of legal form automation system, you’re probably wasting valuable time, and you have the potential to make costly errors.
Common Mistakes When Manually Completing Forms
Filling out the same form many times requires copying the document to a new file or copy and pasting the data from the first document to the second. You’ll then have to rely on the search function or your own proofreading abilities to find all the names, case information, and personal information you have to change. If you’ve ever made the mistake of leaving one client’s personal information on a document meant for another client, you know how big of an embarrassment and a liability this can be. Unfortunately, this is an easy mistake to make when you’re continually re-keying or copy and pasting your documents.
Filling out complicated forms such as the Case Information Statement can take up hours of valuable time. Even if you decide to hire a paralegal or other support staff to help out with tedious work like this, paying their salary will eat into your profits. Additionally, complex forms like the Case Information Statement are filled with complicated calculations that are easy to make a mistake on if you fill them in manually.
Automated Form Solutions
No attorney should have to spend large chunks of time filling out cumbersome forms anymore. Attorneys are always busy and should embrace any opportunity to lighten their workload and free up some time. Document automation has arrived, and if you haven’t switched to an automated solution, you’re missing out on valuable time that you could spend doing whatever you like. Once you eliminate tedious and unnecessary work from your life, you will be free to spend that extra time pursuing more clients, leaving the office early, or getting other work done.
LEAP provides one of the most advanced document automation systems on the market today and it’s made even better by being a part of a completely integrated practice management software. When you fill out client and matter information in a LEAP card, the information will automatically populate in all your forms, motions, documents, and letters in seconds, with only a single click from you. It’s a true game-changer for attorneys who have been operating in an old-fashioned way for years.
Having document automation software is just like having a full-time paralegal on your staff, generating your forms and documents. Even better, software never takes a sick day. It’s also much more affordable than paying a full-time or even a part-time salary to a staff member.
With document automation, you can complete complicated documents like the Case Information Statement in a fraction of the time. In addition to importing your client and case information in seconds, LEAP also performs calculations automatically. For example, when you fill-in the monthly expenses in the different sections of the Case Information Statement card, LEAP provides an Expense Summary tab that calculates the total Shelter, Transportation, Personal, and Total expenses for both Joint Life Style and Current Life Style. All this information is then automatically populated into the CIS when you generate it within LEAP.
Save More Time with a Legal Forms Library
Any document automation software worth its salt will have an extensive library of legal forms available for use. In addition to saving time filling out forms and documents, the legal forms library will eliminate the time you spend scouring court and government websites looking for the correct form. Suddenly, you’ll have every legal form and template at your fingertips. You should make sure that the document automation software you go with has an extensive library of forms in your area of law, whether it’s family law, bankruptcy, criminal, litigation, personal injury, real estate, immigration, or wills & estates.
Integration with Microsoft Office 365
The best practice management systems closely integrate with Microsoft Office 365. You should be able to continue to use the programs you love and are used to, even though your practice is switching over to a new case and document management system. For example, LEAP uses Microsoft Word for document creation and automation. Word allows LEAP to use variable fields to customize and insert your client and case information into documents in seconds. In addition, LEAP integrates very strongly with Microsoft Outlook. With the click of a button in LEAP, you can generate an email to a client with a document, letter, or form attached. There’s no reason to attempt to reinvent the wheel when it comes to email or word processing. The giants of the industry are on top for a reason; they make great products that integrate well with other software. Being able to retain the word processing and email clients you are familiar with makes the transition to LEAP smoother and easier for you.
Being an attorney in an area of law that is primarily form-based can be exhausting. There never seems to be enough time in the day and it almost seems as though entire days are spent drafting legal forms and documents. The solution is to invest in a good practice management system. Automating your legal form process cuts down on both miscalculation and transposition mistakes, and allows you to get back to practicing law so you can record more billable time and make more money. If you’re interested in learning more about how practice management software can help you, contact LEAP today.