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Law Technology Today


LTRC Roundtable: Technology

Alan Klevan, Allison C Johs, Debra L Bruce, Emily Amara Gordon, Reid F Trautz, Michael D.J. Eisenberg, and Meagan Collver


  • Memebers of the LTRC board provide their insight as to what piece of technology is the most useful in the legal practice. 
  • What technology will improve productivity and profitability in your legal practice?
LTRC Roundtable: Technology

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What is the one piece of technology, either hardware or software, that has been the most useful in your practice to improve efficiency, productivity, and/or profitability, and how are you using this product to do so?

Michael Eisenberg: My favorite solution is SaneBox. It works with your e-mail provider (not directly on your computer), where you train it to handle certain e-mails automatically. For example, if it’s a junk e-mail, you never want to see it again from that sender. Drop the e-mail into your @saneblackhole folder and never see it or e-mails from the sender again. If it’s an e-mail in your inbox that you are not ready to handle at the moment and want to deal with later, i.e., reappear in your inbox, SaneBox has some SaneBox Snooze features you can use: Some examples are @SaneBox3h (for having the e-mail reappear 3 hours later), @SaneBox5pm (for having the e-mail reappear at 5 PM), @SaneBoxtomorrow (for having the e-mail reappear tomorrow morning), @SaneBoxnextweek (for having the e-mail reappear next Monday morning), etc.

SaneBox also has other great features like Sane Do Not Disturb, where you can turn it on when you are away from your devices, at night or over a weekend when you are on vacation, or at any time when you need solitude from inbound emails and have them reappear at a time and date of your choosing like when you get back from the weekend or a vacation. There is also Sane Reminders, where you can put a “reminder” email address (e.g., [email protected], [email protected], etc.) in the CC or BCC field. SaneBox will track this email and put it back to the top of your inbox at the time indicated unless the email has been replied to!

Debra Bruce: Michael, I love SaneBox, too. Don’t forget SaneBlackHole, which allows users to banish an email sender without letting them know they found a live address because you tried to unsubscribe. Although you can mark a sender as junk/spam in Gmail and Outlook, sometimes useful emails wind up in the Junk/Spam folder. So it can be helpful to reduce the clutter that gathers in that Junk/Spam folder.

Alan Klevan: Having a desktop scanner has allowed me to save incredible amounts of time in my practice, which has, in turn, allowed me to do more things outside of the office, both professionally and personally.

There are many companies that make desktop scanners, but I use the Fujitsu Scansnap, which I first saw at an ABA Techshow. Desktop scanners allow you to scan documents regardless of the number of pages at your desk without having to get up, walk to a large office scanner, scan those documents, and return to your desk.  Once the document is scanned, the desktop scanner will provide prompts, such as sending the document to a printer, scan to email (such as a document you need a client or counsel to review), save as a PDF document, convert the document to Word, or convert the document to an Excel spreadsheet, just to name a few. 

I primarily use the desktop scanner to save the document as a PDF file.  Using a “naming convention” in my practice, I name and store the document.  As a personal injury attorney, I get many medical records, some still in paper format.  Also, when I receive pleadings from another party, I do not need to ask a favor for them to email me the file in Word form (which I believe is unethical for security reasons!)  Rather, I scan the document and save it as a Word file, and I’m many steps ahead in responding to those pleadings!  Allowing me to scan from my seat and see the file in PDF format immediately and naming it just as fast has saved me countless hours of getting up and down each time I get a paper document I need to get into my file.

Allison C Johs: Alan, I can tell you that several of my law firm clients have seen significant improvements in productivity after purchasing desktop scanners for all of their attorneys and staff. While a lot of law firm “paperwork” now arrives electronically, a fair amount of paper documents still need to be integrated into the law firm’s files and made accessible.

Project management software is one piece of software that I have found to be extremely helpful in my consulting practice and with my clients. Project management software helps me keep track of multiple projects simultaneously, see the project status, delegate specific tasks or portions of the project to others, keep track of deadlines, improve efficiency, streamline processes, and more.

For example, I use with one of my clients to keep track of writing projects we’re working on together. We can also add files, such as images to use for social media promotion of the project and other related assets.

Debra Bruce: My first thought was also about the scanner on my desk. In addition, I find cloud-based law practice management software very helpful. It can save a lot of time by gathering in one place all of the documents, emails, notes, timekeeping, billing, payments, contacts, calendars,  tasks and even texts “under one roof.” Most of the programs also have workflows (checklists), automated document generation capability, a secure client portal, and an e-signature capability for documents.  Those features are valuable in keeping client info secure and confidential while being able to act swiftly. 

Over the years, I have used several different programs, changing when really valuable new features are added to a competitive program. I currently use MyCase, which has built-in accounting software. That being said, I often say, “Technology will make your life easier, but first, it makes it hell.” I say that because when you install a new product, there is always a learning curve.

There is another benefit to using law practice management software that, fortunately, I have not needed. However, I have observed others needing it. When lawyers disappeared suddenly during the Covid pandemic or due to some other reason for an abrupt departure, some firms had to spend many unbillable hours combing through emails, documents on laptops, phone texts, and paper files to determine the status of client matters that the absent lawyer was handling. If they had been optimizing the use of practice management software as a firm, that would have been far easier because everything would have been stored together for the matter.

Alan Klevan: Allison, how is different than sharing things on a cloud platform like Google Docs?  Is it more like a scheduling platform like or

Allison C Johs: Monday isn’t a scheduling platform or a document collaboration platform - it’s a project management platform. But it can incorporate some elements of those other programs but it has some other features that help you keep all of the important elements of the project all in one place. You could use Monday in conjunction with Google Docs if you wanted, for example, by including the link to the Google Doc in Monday for collaboration.

Meagan Collver: My first thought was what others above have said: cloud-based practice management software. Our firm recently switched from a locally hosted server-based program to a cloud-based practice management software, Aderant Sierra. At first, people were hesitant to use the software since it was not originally built for law practices, but now it is running fairly smoothly. I can access the program anywhere there is WiFi, and this makes it easier to practice on the go so to speak. In addition, it uploads and downloads faster. I can also associate emails, including attachments, directly from Outlook into the cloud-based program. It also keeps everything, such as pleadings, emails, letters, scheduled hearings/meetings, finances, and timekeeping for billing, in one place. This allows other lawyers and staff in the firm to access the file and know everything about it without going to multiple places. You can also assign people as reviewers of documents, and it alerts them when there is a document to review and when the review is completed. Further, it is easier to deny access to files if there is a conflict or potential conflict. In sum, it’s made our practice much more efficient.

Reid Trautz: I will jump in here and shout out to Microsoft Word. Word processing software is the greatest productivity software lawyers use daily, but it is so ubiquitous we take it for granted. Before MS Word, WordPerfect transformed the practice of law from typewriters in the late 1980s. So, how about a little love for this everyday software that continues to make our world possible?

Alan Klevan: Reid, I think many lawyers love Microsoft Word, but they need to start being “in love” with Word.  I highly recommend understanding how to use Styles, a tool that most lawyers don’t use.  Understanding styles will allow lawyers to prepare their documents in a most comfortable format and also allows layers to format documents sent to them that are not in a format they are comfortable with using.  Word also allows lawyers to convert their documents to Adobe Acrobat with one click.  Once in Acrobat, a lawyer can add their electronic signature, and, voila, the document is complete.

Allison C Johs: I’ll jump on the Word bandwagon. In addition to Styles, I love the navigation pane in Word. If you’re using Styles - especially headings - the navigation pane makes it easy to jump around in a document or to rearrange sections of a document.

Emily Amara Gordon: It’s tough for me to pick just one! Over the past year, my practice has gone through a complete tech renovation. For ten years, I exclusively used law practice management software. Although we still use that software on a limited basis, we’ve switched to non-legal specific software options. We are now using a combination of, PandaDoc and Front. 

I am using as both project management and practice management software. It is fully accessible on mobile, allowing me to run my practice and stay in touch with my staff even when traveling to ABA meetings! I get alerts on all of my devices when my staff pings me; I can even review their notes on my Apple Watch! We have various boards: individual task boards for each staff member, an active cases board, a leads board, and a closed cases board. One of my favorite Monday features is the ability to create a custom Monday email address for each case. We BCC that board for record-keeping purposes to a case status update subitem. This allows us to seamlessly maintain a record of any inbound and outbound action that touches our email inboxes. 

Although it’s a close call, PandaDoc is probably my favorite tool in our tech stack right now. We use it for what it’s known for - document automation - but also attach non-IOLTA payment requests and billing to completed documents via Stripe and use their new Rooms feature, which is currently in Beta. We use their Rooms feature to two-way share documents between our firm and clients, share templated workflows, aka to-do lists, with clients based on case type, and share a templated welcome message with clients that outlines client expectations and our communication policies.

I use Front for email management with some other inbound and outbound integrations, such as Slack, texting via Twilio,, and Zoom. I also love their calendar and scheduling tool, which allows us to automate our consult onboarding process.

Finally, I just switched our VOIP provider to Dialpad, which we are all really enjoying so far. It will likely replace the need to integrate our texts through Front via Twilio and use Slack. I’m also hoping that it can eventually replace our Zoom license, but I will need to play with that more before I know how realistic that goal will be to achieve. 

As a bonus, I third the recommendation for Fujitsu ScanSnap. As an immigration lawyer, I need to scan hundreds of pages of documents for many of our filings. The ScanSnap is reliable, fast, and easy to use. I’ve been using ScanSnap for years and am on my second version. I gave my dad, who practices with me, my old version, but he liked it so much, he upgraded to the newest version! I highly recommend it for any lawyer who handles a lot of paper documents. For law firm owners and those who are in charge of record keeping for tax purposes, it’s also great for scanning receipts and keeping them organized. 

Alan Klevan: I’m not ready to say that I “cannot live without” this tech, but I think it will be an important element to every law practice in the future, and that is generative AI.  The one I am presently using is Microsoft Copilot, as it seamlessly integrates into my heavy “Office 365” practice.

As an injury attorney, I am using Copilot to review my medical records, regardless of size.  If you scan the .pdf file into your computer, you must “OCR” the document into searchable text.  Once that is done, I open the folder with Microsoft Edge and start using Copilot, which is embedded in Edge.   I believe I can use Copilot without sending the document to Edge but, if I send the document to Edge and I have a question about specific medical issues with which I am not familiar, Copilot searches the web for answers to my questions.

I understand that Acrobat has an AI feature in “beta” form, but I’m sticking with Copilot for now as it searches your entire Office suite for information.

While generative AI has not been crucial to my practice to date, I would suggest becoming familiar with its integration into your practice as it very well may be an important feature in your practice moving forward.