What is law practice management software?
Law practice management software allows law firms to manage cases, contracts, clients, and (sometimes) accounting processes, such as recording and invoicing billable time. In other words, they offer a combination of CRM, document management, scheduling/time tracking, accounting, and project management features specifically for law firms.
These tools automate standard procedures, such as:
checking for conflicts of interest and checking statutes of limitation
preventing duplicate data entry, and
facilitating secure information sharing within the firm.
They allow users to create to-do lists, draft documents, and track calls, emails and other forms of communication. Thus, the calendar is a central feature that is important to planning case timelines, setting up reminders for calls and important deadlines, etc. Most systems will integrate with users' personal electronic calendars (to provide daily schedule and alerts on a mobile device, for example).
Buyers should check whether the system will be sufficient for tracking billable time, creating invoices, and other accounting procedures required by the firm. Some legal practice management products integrate with accounting software, while others do not require users to use separate accounting software.
Law Practice Management Software Features & Capabilities
Billable time tracking, task management
Business task, document generation & intake automation
E-billing & invoice generation
Double-entry accounting, IOLTA accounting
Contact management, legal CRM
Built-in matter management
Calendaring and docketing
Private web portal and customer communication
Expense allocation and business intelligence
Law practice management software is available on a subscription-basis, billed annually or monthly. Apps for small practices with limited feature sets are available per user at less than to plans for middle tiered firms are available from $50 to $100 monthly per user. More advanced enterprise level plans are available for more on annual plans, sometimes featuring web presence and marketing support as well.