Shifting to cloud saves time, adds efficiency for family lawyers
By AdvocateDaily.com Staff
Having support calculations available on a cloud computing platform will provide family law practitioners with the flexibility and mobility they need in today’s fast-paced legal environment, says Canadian legal software supplier Michael Perlman.
It allows for quickly adjusting child or spousal support numbers on the go — whether it’s in court or in a coffee shop — rather than logging into an office computer running the DivorceMate Software Inc. program, says Perlman, the company’s president.
“You can use our cloud software on any computer, in any location,” Perlman tells AdvocateDaily.com. “It doesn’t matter if you’re on a Mac, iPad, a Windows computer, or even a smartphone, you’re just logging into our website and accessing your files.”
DivorceMate will promote its recently revamped cloud product line during an East Coast tour with a series of sessions in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia on the following dates:
Fredericton: Sept. 24 from noon-1 p.m.
Saint John: Sept. 25 from 8-9 a.m.
Moncton: Sept. 26 from noon-1 p.m.
Halifax: Sept. 27 from noon-1 p.m.
“We want to inform and educate our East Coast users on the benefits of our software, and encourage them to migrate from the desktop program to the cloud,” Perlman says.
Some 30 to 35 per cent of East Coast users have already embraced the cloud product, and Perlman says he would like to see that number edge closer to 75 per cent before the end of the year.
“Our aim is to make the transition to cloud as seamless as possible, and without much of a learning curve. With this is mind we developed a cloud platform that is similar in look and feel to the desktop program, so people are familiar and comfortable with it. Plus one of our goals was to make it straightforward and easy to use, and I think we achieved this,” Perlman says.
Law firms can be “notoriously slow to change,” says Perlman, whose wife is a lawyer. So he knows it can be challenging to encourage users to make the switch.
“When lawyers are using a particular program, if it works, they’re happy,” he says. “Lawyers like to practise law, and don’t want to spend time updating to new technology or change the way they do things.”
But Perlman says his company will provide assistance and show them the migration does not have to be complicated — and the payoff is great.
“For example, if a judge decides a party’s income should be adjusted by $10,000, they may ask for a new support calculation,” Perlman says. “Instead of waiting for a recess or adjournment when the lawyer can consult with the office, they will be able to make the change on their smartphone, tablet or laptop on the spot."
The cloud software could also be used in mediation, he adds.
The reality for most lawyers is that work doesn’t stay in the office, Perlman says.
“It’s not just going to the office nine to five. They may be working two to three hours at home in the evening,” he says. “The workday is different. So having the flexibility to access the program from any device is really appealing to many lawyers.”
Confidentiality and security are of critical importance and Perlman says his company has taken significant measures to protect data. In addition, files are backed up multiple times daily.
He says his travels to the U.S. have revealed that law firms there are a few steps ahead of Canada when it comes to embracing technology and cloud-based platforms.
“While other sectors in Canada seem to be following in the direction of cloud software, the legal industry will get there eventually,” he says. “Lawyers are starting to embrace it, and in the next three to five years, it will be much more common.”
Perlman will also host a training seminar on the Tools program during the stops in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick to help legal professionals save time and maximize efficiency.
DivorceMate will be touring throughout the rest of the country later this fall and will release details on locations and dates as they become available.
For more information on the East Coast tour and to register for the events, please click here.