How COVID-19 is Changing The Legal Profession
The COVID-19 crisis flipped the world upside down overnight. It changed the entire landscape of the legal profession just as fast.
Governments mandated lockdowns and business closures and postponed court proceedings indefinitely.
Still, law firms in all practice areas are seeking ways to continue to provide legal services to their clients to the best of their abilities amid the pandemic.
Shelter-in-place orders and social distancing required the legal industry, known for being slow to embrace technology to shift to remote work or go out of business.
The courts also quickly implemented video conferencing and other digital solutions to resolve legal disputes even though courthouses were closed and jury trials were suspended.
Some firms are struggling to stay afloat as new cases diminish, while others have seen an uptick in cases related to the virus.
No matter what situation your practice is in right now, COVID-19 has changed the legal industry for good.
If your law firm can’t adapt, your law firm will be on the outside looking in.
In the article below, we will discuss how COVID-19 has changed the legal profession and how your law firm can adapt with law practice management software.
Table of Contents
- Working Remote Is Here To Stay
- Updating Their Web Presence
- Improving Client Communications
- Shifting To The Cloud
- Law Practice Management Software
- Choose CoCounselor
Working Remote Work Is Here To Stay
Remote work is currently revolutionizing many industries, and the legal profession is no exception.
This started before COVID-19, however.
It started innocently by first sending emails at home and the system quickly expanded once software allowed seamless access to a law firm’s data.
Some firms within the legal industry embraced this phenomenon, and now they are fortunate they did.
It has allowed them to develop a culture where it is very common for lawyers to do a large portion of their duties away from the office, which will be crucial in the “post COVID” era.
Still, there was some pushback from some law firms who didn’t want to adopt wide-scale remote policies.
Some of that push back is because of the onboarding process and firms believing that the only way to onboard is through in-person education.
They believe that the only way to create bonds that tie legal professionals together can only be made in-person, and maybe rightfully so.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a complete game-changer because now lawyers have no choice but to work from home, especially as the pandemic began.
But it seems like, overall, law firms have adapted well. They are still providing legal services, billing available hours, and staying in sync with their clients using platforms like Zoom.
These platforms have also fostered collaboration and have allowed lawyers to get the “bonding experience” that was once thought only available by meeting in person.
It’s easy to speculate on what the new normal will be from here, but lawyers still don’t know exactly what to expect.
However, it is safe to assume that remote work isn’t going anywhere, and it will be commonplace for all lawyers.
Pandemic aside, increasing the amount of money generated by working remotely will allow legal professionals to reduce the amount of office space they need, lowering rent costs and raising revenues.
Anything that can help a practice save money during this pandemic should be a welcomed change.
Updating Their Web Presence
With everything and every one going online, law firms need to be sure they have an established web presence.
Your website will become your new legal office for potential clients, so your website should be updated to include the best contact methods under the current circumstances.
Law practices will also be able to reinforce their commitment to service throughout the pandemic.
The content of the websites should answer questions and concerns that are specific to the pandemic and COVID-19, particularly the issues facing current clients and potential clients.
Improving Client Communications
When stay at home orders were put in place because of COVID-19 pandemic, client communication became challenging for most legal professionals overnight.
But, email will be king in the new normal.
Legal professionals can create an email to be sent to their clients, explaining the logistics of how their services will continue during the pandemic.
You can also use email to update your clients on changes to their case status and remind them of pending deadlines.
Apart from email, communication over the phone was another primary way to communicate with clients, but being away from a physical office can present challenges when it comes to speaking on the phone.
Lawyers may not want to give out their cell phone number to every potential client, so sending an email to schedule client calls letting them know what phone number the call will be coming from will be necessary.
And to keep lawyers from giving out their cellphone numbers, firms should use VoIP telephone services to conduct business relating to the firm.
And if an in-person meeting is absolutely necessary, law firms should go above and beyond CDC guidelines and practice social distancing by maintaining 6 feet of space between participants and wearing masks.
Shifting To The Cloud
COVID-19 has prompted many law firms to move their operations to the cloud, something forward-thinking practices had already done.
Many firms are probably wondering why they weren’t already in the cloud at this point in the pandemic.
And during this pandemic, it is almost irresponsible for a law firm to not be in the cloud, or at least making the transition to the cloud.
More and more firms will end up in the cloud as time goes by.
The old argument that the cloud isn’t secure isn’t relevant anymore.
In many ways, storing your firm’s data on the cloud is more secure than the servers that have been used for years in law practices.
Now, especially because of the pandemic, it’s not a matter of if a practice will migrate to the cloud; it’s when.
Law Practice Management Software
To keep up with today’s increasingly demanding clients, especially in the middle of a pandemic, isn’t an easy task.
Luckily all a firm needs to bring their practice online are the right legal tools, like good law practice management software.
Personal injury lawyers working in a pandemic need a reliable service for case management. You get that with practice management software.
Many options are available for law practice management software, from streamlined law firm productivity to all in one marketing and business management software.
In short, law practice management software will help law firms streamline their practice so lawyers can meet their client’s needs while running an efficient, profitable law firm, from anywhere.
This is critical in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
Legal software has been around for decades, but it is an absolute game-changer in the post COVID world.
With cloud-based software, firms have access to their data from any location as long as they have a device with internet access.
Cloud-based software offers personal injury attorneys the convenience of mobile, flexible access to case-related information at an affordable price.
Cloud-based software right now is your best and soon likely only option if you’re looking for practice management software.
Many companies are now phasing out their premise-based solutions out of necessity and turning to the cloud.
It’s just a matter of time until this pandemic gets everyone working in the cloud.
Many law firms are using practice management software, but if you aren’t, it can be hard choosing the software that is right for your firm.
If you’re ready to explore legal software for your law firm, we invite you to take a trial run of CoCounselor, especially if you run a personal injury practice.
CoCounselor and personal injury law firms are a perfect match during and beyond this pandemic.
CoCounselor is the only cloud-based practice management program designed with the personal injury firm in mind.
During this pandemic, with CoCounselor, you can gain operational efficiencies, keep your staff on the same page, work from anywhere on any device, and build dashboards and reports that will keep you up to date on deadlines and the overall happenings of your firm.
If you’re still running a personal injury firm with practice management software during COVID-19, it’s time to give CoCounselor a try.
Click the button below to request a free demo.