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Law Firm Apps Let New Clients Send Case Info to Their Attorneys ‘Neatly Wrapped Up in a Gift Box’

Posted Jun 6, 2012 3:58 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Long willing to spend on radio, television, billboard, bus bench and telephone directory advertising, personal injury lawyers are increasingly turning to technology for to make a cutting-edge appeal to clients.

Among them are several firms in Maryland that have created customized smartphone applications to help clients compile an electronic file of helpful information when they first contact an attorney about an auto accident or drunken-driving case, the Associated Press reports.

"When you don't want to be on the back of a bus or some cheesy commercial in between Jerry Springer and Oprah, you need to come up with innovative ways to help clients and help market your services," says Steven D. Silverman of Silverman Thompson Slutkin White in Baltimore.

His firm is fine-tuning a Crash 911 app that it expects to provide on its website and Facebook page. Created at a cost of approximately $2,000, it will allow new clients to use GPS to mark locations as they fill out an accident report. The firm is also working on a criminal law app.

At Michael A. Freedman's three-attorney law office in Owings Mills, an app allows new clients to touch an "accident intake" button on their smartphones to launch a screen that prompts them to enter details including the name and badge number of the police officer who responds to the scene of the crash. Functions also allow photos and video to be sent to the firm, which expects to save on investigative costs by obtaining such information from clients, according to Freedman.

"So many times, the clients will call us with insufficient amounts of information to establish liability right off the bat," he says. "What this will allow us to do is not only prove the case with data, but provide pictures of the scene, the car, the point of impact, witness testimony. It's neatly wrapped up in a gift box."

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