Legal Technology

New ABA Techreport shows slight decrease in firms that budget for technology

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The percentage of firms that budget for technology has undergone a slight decrease, according to survey data from the ABA Techreport 2018, released Wednesday.

The report, which relies on data from the annual Legal Technology Survey Report, says that 57 percent of responding lawyers and firms budget for technology, down from 60 percent last year. According to the report, the percentage of firms that budget for technology increases with a firm’s size. This year’s report says that 34 percent of solo respondents, 53 percent of firms of two to nine attorneys, 77 percent of firms of 10 to 49 attorneys, 83 percent of firms with 100 to 499 attorneys, and 87 percent of firms of 500 or more attorneys had technology budgets.

ABA Techreport also says that respondents were less likely to telecommute than in previous years and were more likely to use general search engines than fee-based options to research a new matter.

Five articles comprising this information were released Wednesday for free. They include: Budgeting and Planning, Solo & Small Firm, Practice Management, Technology Training and Litigation and TAR. The other four topics will be released once a week on Mondays starting in January 2019.

In total, these and other topics are compiled into the Legal Technology Survey Report’s six volumes—Technology Basics & Security, Law Office Technology, Online Research, Marketing & Communication Technology, Litigation Technology and E-Discovery and Mobile Lawyers—that are each for sale on the ABA’s website.

The Legal Technology Survey Report, a comprehensive survey of the use of technology in the legal profession, included 295 questions divided into six separate questionnaires. The sample size was 60,000 ABA attorneys in private practice. The tables in the report have a margin of error of 3.4 percent with a 95 percent confidence. However, the report notes that results with fewer than 100 responses should be used with caution due to the small sample size.

The ABA Techreport is produced by the ABA Law Practice Division’s ABA Legal Technology Research Center. The Legal Technology Survey Report began more than 20 years ago, according to an ABA news release.

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