In recent years, we have seen the emergence of the virtual law practice. Did you know CICERO LawPack is ideally suited for this purpose?

So, what is a virtual law practice? The two most commonly used definitions are the ones from the Wikipedia, and from author Stephanie Kimbro. The Wikipedia defines it as follows: A virtual law firm is a legal practice that does not have a bricks-and-mortar office, but operates from the homes or satellite offices of its lawyers, usually delivering services to clients at a distance using technological means of communication (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_law_firm). Stephanie Kimbro, on the other hand, defines a virtual law practice as “a professional law practice that exists online through a secure portal and is accessible to both the client and the lawyer anywhere the parties may access the Internet.” A survey by the American Bar Association revealed that the expression is also often used for any legal practice that offers or uses any of the following: secure client portals, web-based client interaction, virtual (as in non-physical) office / telecommuting / remote work, and/or cloud computing.

Working online with a cloud-based solution is a recommended solution for lawyers with a solo practice, as well as for beginning lawyers and trainee lawyers. It is typically more cost-effective, and offers the additional benefit that you can work from home, or from anywhere else you might want to, and when you want to. Joleena Louis, e.g., is a matrimonial and family law attorney, who went from being a law firm employee to having her own successful solo practice at home. She realised she spent most of her time in court, and far less time in the office. As a result, she couldn’t really justify the rental cost of a physical office anymore. Setting up a virtual law office was the logical answer.

Research in the States revealed there also is another group of lawyers who can benefit greatly from having a virtual practice: all the female lawyers who want to balance a family life with a successful professional career. For years there has been a tendency for female lawyers to leave the legal profession, either because of the challenges (and sometimes discrimination) they face in a male dominated profession, or because of the desire to start a family. Having a virtual practice, where one works from home when one wants to, opens interesting new perspectives.

Rachel Rodgers, e.g., is registered at the bar in New York. Some years ago, she started one of the very first virtual law practices. She did so because she wanted to have children. At the same time, she didn’t want the struggle she saw other female advocates were experiencing, juggling motherhood and professional life in a stressful environment. Working in a virtual office from home allows her to have the family life she wants, and to work when it suits her. Today, Rodgers’ firm is so successful that she hires other lawyers to assist her.

So, the benefits of a virtual office are not limited to cost savings (as there is, e.g., no need to rent a physical office). Having a virtual office also leaves you with greater freedom and is more convenient, as you can work where and when you choose to work.

If all of this sounds appealing, then CICERO LawPack 10 is the answer for you. It is designed to offer an easy online solution. To be able to use the cloud version, all you need is access to the Internet with a browser, and – at least, for now – Office 365 (which is offered as an optional part of the package).

And it offers the services people associate with having a virtual office. It allows you to have a virtual, i.e. non-physical office. It can easily be used for telecommuting or remote work, so you can work from anywhere, and at any time, using either a browser or one of our mobile apps. It uses cloud computing technology, offering you the choice to go for a fully cloud-based solution or a hybrid solution, where you can use your own servers if you prefer to do so. For more information, see www.cicerosoftware.com/en/legal-practice-management-products/cicero-lawpack/. As an optional module you can also give your clients access to their files through a secure portal (i.e. the “web view” module: www.cicerosoftware.com/en/legal-practice-management-products/cicero-webview/).

Are you interested? Why don’t you try it out, for one month, for free, without any obligation to commit? You can request a trial at the bottom of the www.cicerosoftware.com/en/legal-practice-management-products/cicero-lawpack/ page. The trial period lasts for 30 days, but can be extended for trainee lawyers. During that time, you have full access to all tutorials, to the help desk, and to e-learning training sessions. All you need is a browser, access to the Internet, and Office 365. Try it. You won’t regret it!

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