ABA Techshow

A Sampling of Smart Litigation Management Tools

In today’s world, lawyers who don’t embrace the latest technology are not only shortchanging their clients and themselves. They may soon run afoul of their ethical obligations as well.

That was the central premise behind an ABA Techshow presentation Thursday on new technologies that can enhance a lawyer’s practice without the need to acquire advanced computer programming skills.

The presentation, “Use of Technology in Preparing to Litigate: the Latest Smart Litigation Management Tools,” was led by two tech-savvy practitioners: Philadelphia-area lawyer and legal technology consultant Dan Siegel and veteran Chicago trial lawyer Martin T. Tully, national chair of Katten Muchin Rosenman’s electronic discovery and evidence practice.

“For lawyers, technology matters,” Tully said by way of introduction. “It makes us far more efficient at what we do.”

For nearly an hour, Siegel and Tully led the audience on a fast-paced overview of several different technological tools that lawyers can use to enhance their practice and achieve better results for their clients in every phase of a case, from pretrial investigation to the presentation of evidence.

Products and services mentioned included case management software and workflow wizards; HotDocs and Pathagoras for document assembly; remote collection devices for electronically stored information; TextMap and LiveNote as transcript management software; TrialDirector for evidence presentation; whiteboard apps that allow drawing on a simulated canvas, and jury selection apps like iJury, Jury Duty and Jury Box.

And all was said with an eye on a proposed amendment to the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct that would require lawyers to have a basic understanding of the benefits and risks of technology in order to stay abreast of changes in the law and its practice.

With all of that technology in play, Tully closed the presentation with two practical recommendations: Always carry an extension cord and extra batteries.

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