It’s amazing how technology has been transforming the estate planning industry. What was once a maze of paperwork is now mostly digitized, with organized, easy-to-use online files. If you’re curious about which legal technologies can help you the most as an estate planning attorney, this blog is for you.
Technology has made marketing to new clients easier and more effective than ever for estate planning lawyers. And we can't discount online marketing for an older client basis. Sure, we may joke that our kids need to set up our phones and computers, however, according to the Pew Research Center, of those 50 to 64 years old who are online, 72% of them are on Facebook. And 62% of online seniors (ages 65 and older) are also on the social network.
With the right technology on your desktop, it's just as easy to meet clients at their home or workplace as it is for them to come to you. That may be especially valuable for clients who are ill or have limited mobility. And honestly, who hasn't had a meeting where a client realized the one document he really needed to bring, was the one he accidentally left at home? Beyond that, a virtual office also means that your practice is no longer limited by geography. Not only do virtual offices expand your potential client demographic, but they also expand your hiring pool, so you can find the most suitable candidates for your law practice.
Legal practical applications for artificial intelligence (AI) have yet to be fully explored, but researchers are citing AI-powered legal tools like Kira Systems as something to watch for in the near future. Kira Systems makes simple work of complicated legal tasks such as contract analysis and lease abstraction. Machine learning can provide attorneys with fast, accurate, and intuitive tech solutions to daily tasks and common roadblocks to estate planning, such as due diligence.
How can you ensure the confidentiality of conversations with clients, other attorneys, and paralegals? No method of tech exchange is ever 100% permanently secure, but we can do better than using text messages or a (perpetually hacked) email address. The answer may come soon with the development of applications that have a sole mission of preserving the confidentiality of information.
Chatbots are computer programs that interact with humans using very realistic dialog. They employ machine learning and artificial intelligence to carry out surprisingly sophisticated conversations. If you visit many law firm websites today, a chatbot will probably greet you in the form of a messenger box, showing a friendly (human) face that asks how he/she may be of assistance.
Chatbots can change estate planning law by automating tedious and time-consuming tasks, such as client intake forms. Law-related chatbots may even be able to provide preliminary legal assessments of a client’s situation. For example, a chatbot on your site could comprehend that a visitor is requesting help with creating a will and provide the link to your site’s will-related information. Deployed strategically (and carefully watched), chatbots have the potential to streamline your customer service processes.
Movement to the Cloud
The cloud isn’t exactly new technology, but it’s worth touching on due to the incredible benefits it poses for estate planning attorneys. Transfer your practice to the cloud and enjoy better document organization, data security, encryption, and fast file sharing from any device. The cloud has flexible options to make it affordable for small firms, and enable excellent disaster recovery and IT infrastructure. Investing in emerging technologies like the cloud can let you expand your practice and accommodate clients’ needs with ease.
From security issues to robotized customer interactions, estate planning attorneys need to plan for the future of their practices, just as they plan for the future of their clients' estates. So come see the innovation that WealthCounsel® has to offer you and your firm.
If you’re ready to get the help you need and take your practice to the next level, schedule a demo with one of our staff—discuss pricing and learn how WealthCounsel can meet your practice’s particular needs.