The public health crisis brought about by the COVID-19 outbreak has drastically upended many facets of life, not least of which is the way business is conducted. Among the sectors most affected is the legal industry. Not only have social distancing measures changed the way court proceedings are conducted, but they’ve drastically impacted the way attorneys interact with their clients.
Given the huge role human interaction plays in this profession, remote working can pose a challenge to some. Thankfully, new technology can help you advocate for your clients despite not being able to meet face to face. We at Record Retrieval Solutions can help you use technology so you can continue to provide the same level of service as you did before the pandemic.
Know the tools at your disposal
When it comes to facilitating court hearings or depositions, most courts and law firms do not have tried-and-tested information technology infrastructure and solutions. Because the pandemic was so sudden and unexpected, these organizations were forced to adapt quickly and make do with whatever works.
Individual attorneys had to take the initiative. First, they had to exercise due diligence in understanding what technology solutions were available and being considered for use. They then conferred with the court and the opposing counsel to agree on a solution that would work for all parties.
They also had to involve their clients in such discussions. Different clients have different technical restrictions or preferences. For example, a client’s computer model and its operating system will have limitations on what applications it can support. To help their clients, attorneys must effectively communicate the pros and cons of each potential solution and help them choose the right one.
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It’s crucial that the client feels supported through this process. This involves making sure that they’re comfortable with the platform and methods being used, which will ultimately lead to fewer hiccups and technical difficulties during actual court proceedings.
Prepare backup materials
Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst — this mindset applies as much to remote court proceedings as they do to anything else. You may pray that the audio-visual communication technologies replicate the experience of being inside a courtroom. However, the reality is that technologies fail. For instance, internet connections can falter or break, making cross examinations garbled or halting proceedings altogether.
This doesn’t mean, however, that an attorney cannot do their job. Instead of relying on the ability to speak and present case-relevant materials in real time like they do in the courtroom, they can provide alternative ways of presenting. For example, compiling all evidentiary documents and supporting files like instructions or addenda within a single folder can be provided ahead of time in case video connections waver. Creating a hyperlinked index to navigate through this folder and sending it to all relevant parties will assure everyone involved that the case is and will continue to be under control regardless of the circumstances.
Always keep in touch
Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind, however, are the tenets of good communication. In-person meetings may be off the table, but keeping in constant touch with a client via regular phone calls and emails go a long way toward establishing trust.
Call Record Retrieval Solutions now to prime yourself for advocating for your client in this new normal. We help lawyers and insurance companies work smarter and faster with easy online ordering of legal records and fast delivery times.