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15 June 2005

If law firms have so much technology - finance systems, document management systems, e-mail and access to the web - how will they continue to deliver what clients are seeking? Case management technology has proven to be an invaluable partner in dealing with cost and performance pressures. Over the last decade it has become - in the UK - the de-facto way of carrying out 'rote' areas of the law such as debt collection, mortgages and re-financing.

As clients seek more competitive prices and increase their reporting and performance-auditing demands, more complex work types such as litigation, trademarks, commercial property and many other work types are being delivered using the technology. As a result of firms and their clients using case management systems, the streamlining of case handling has improved and a model has developed that supports, for example, the electronic interchange of, for example, new files and progress updates between the law firm and its clients.

What does a case management system actually do? To quote from the article, "At the simplest level it helps track the tasks on a matter, recording what has been done, what is left to do and providing a framework for generating reminders and prompts where deadlines occur. It also provides an essence of collaboration on larger cases by ensuring all the information is kept centrally and accessible to all members of the team."

Case management is becoming the "killer application" to manage complex work types and for many firms it provides a framework within which all files are run within a prescribed practice standard and, at the same time, provides a single link to all the relevant information about a client such as that client's matters, documents, e-mails, finances and important dates.

Article in Lawyers Weekly

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