Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Serving to Protect

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Serving to Protect

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Serving to Protect

In today’s digital age, it’s never been more important to keep data security in mind. Instances of identity theft, wire fraud, corporate espionage, and even geopolitical destabilization efforts have all been on the rise lately, thanks to computer hackers breaching supposedly secure databases and absconding with damaging information.

Nowhere is data security more important than in the legal field. Protecting client and office data from catastrophic accidental loss or purposeful breach has easily become a primary focus for the solo and small law practice community, especially as small firms increasingly transition to paperless offices. With such crucial data now being warehoused in locations, such as cloud storage facilities, that are naturally more susceptible to breach and loss, small-scale firms are taking action to keep client and office data out of the wrong hands.

Protection from Theft and Loss

There are few nightmare scenarios worse than the accidental loss of a law firm’s digital resources. This can take any number of forms, including the kinds of human error that can lead to inadvertent data deletion to so-called acts of God such as floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, or anything else that can wipe a server farm off the face of the Earth. The key to surviving such a calamity is to dedicate time and energy into backing up these crucial databases regularly. Online backup systems are one of most prevalent options, thanks to advancements in modern connectivity technologies.

Meanwhile, purposeful data breach and theft is another major issue that smaller firms have found ways to combat. While no online system is completely secure — there are always vulnerabilities that enterprising hackers can exploit — law offices have been minimizing their exposure by instituting much more stringent security protocols. Simple firewall programs and anti-virus software can help to keep systems secure, and supplementing these basic systems with malware sweepers and better password discipline add further levels of security that can easily spell the difference when it comes to keeping your data under lock and key.

Providing Security Without Sacrificing Convenience

Modern data systems, such as paperless systems that eliminate having to deal with hard copies, are designed to provide high levels of convenience. Sometimes this convenience can jeopardize the security of this data, especially once it leaves your law firm and goes on somewhere else. Legal support providers such as document delivery services can often be the weakest link in the chain if their security measures don’t meet your own firm’s high standards.

Not all support providers are created equal, of course. Some, like Rapid Legal, take data security as seriously as they value providing convenient, accessible service to their partner firms. Rapid Legal’s around-the-clock availability doesn’t come with the price of reduced security; as a certified Electronic Filing Service Provider with the state of California, Rapid Legal meets stringent standards that ensure the security of your electronically-submitted court documents and service of process orders are only accessed by those with the proper authorization.

By all accounts, it’s a jungle out there, and the world of data security is only going to get more wild as we progress. Partner with a skilled and experienced electronic data management service provider like Rapid Legal if you want the best on your side.

How Rapid Legal Has Stayed At The Forefront of eFiling and eService Developments

How Rapid Legal Has Stayed At The Forefront of eFiling and eService Developments

How Rapid Legal Has Stayed At The Forefront of eFiling and eService Developments

The deep connection that Rapid Legal has to the adoption of technology to drive improvement in the legal support services standards and practices makes it only natural that Rapid Legal would have a vested interest in not just understanding eFiling and eService but also leveraging its technology expertise to take advantage of such trends as they emerge. With eFiling and eService going from being a dream in the early 2000s to the rapidly expanding standard that it is today, it’s quite fitting that Rapid Legal has been there every step of the way.

In the Beginning

eFiling certainly feels like it sprung up overnight in California, especially as some of the biggest legal jurisdictions in the state are wasting no time in adopting or expanding their programs. Los Angeles County, for example, is very aggressively pursuing eFiling and eService options to streamline and modernize their court document filing systems as well as expanding the case types to incorporate into the eFiling umbrella.

The truth is, eFiling has been around, in some form or another, for the better part of two decades. The push began in the early 2000s in California, as the state, often at the forefront of leveraging technology to improve the courts efficiency, began using eFiling in certain complex cases at this time. Then, in 2006, Contra Costa County began a pilot project for one judge to test the waters. After the door was open with this project, it was only natural for other counties to follow suit. In 2009, Orange County took some serious steps by offering permissive eFiling for civil cases.

An Eye to the Future

Meanwhile, the Rapid Legal’s leadership constantly met to discuss how these technology advances would affect Rapid Legal and the legal industry. In the summer of 2012, Rapid Legal’s product and engineering teams started to design and build an eFiling Portal for its customers to eFile documents where permitted.  In January of 2013, Orange County became Rapid Legal’s first eFiling Court.

The Stars Align

In 2016, seeing the success of Orange County’s eFiling program, other courts began looking into introducing eFiling.  By the end of 2016, 12 additional California courts went live with eFiling in some capacity.

At this point in time, there would be no turning back: eFiling — and eService — had become established as standard operating procedures and Rapid Legal’s product and engineering teams were busy gearing up to build more integrations with other Courts that were thinking of moving to eFiling and eService.

The Future Is Now

Late in 2016, the biggest change in California’s judicial system, with far reaching service, administration and technology implications was about to take place. Los Angeles Superior Court decided to create an eFiling pilot program of its own. Known as the e-Delivery project, the pilot program permitted documents to be sent electronically to a select number of court clerks through a custom portal provided by Journal Technologies, Inc, (JTI).  These electronic documents were then printed and filed behind the scenes. After approximately a year of e-Delivery proving its effectiveness in general jurisdiction cases in specific courtrooms, the courts moved to institute an expanded version of the project as a more permanent solution and in May of 2017 probate eFiling went live in Los Angeles Superior Court.

With the project proving to be successful, LASC decided to roll this out to other case types.  Beginning in 2017, Rapid Legal started working on an integration with LASC’s EFM vendor, JTI, to build an integration that would allow customers and legal professional to eFile in Los Angeles for civil cases. Final testing with JTI has been underway for the past few months, and the court has set a launch date for eFiling in civil cases to begin in November of 2018. This is, of course, a major milestone, but not one that Rapid Legal and its customers should be unprepared to handle, thanks to the foresight of Rapid Legal and its dedication to supporting the future of the legal services profession.

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Paperless Practices

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Paperless Practices

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Paperless Practices

Small-scale legal practices, typically characterized by either solo practices or law firms with 20 lawyers or fewer, often don’t have the same resources of larger law practices. Complexities of scale are clearly at play here, with large firms with larger budgets can potentially outperform smaller private practices Yet despite the fact that smaller firms are so outmatched when it comes to resources — or perhaps because of it — solo and small practices have become incredibly adaptive in order to run with the big dogs.

No one goes into the legal profession if they’re uncomfortable with challenging circumstances. Ingenuity can go a long way, and small-scale practitioners have learned to become agile and efficient in ways that put many larger firms to shame simply because they had no choice if they wanted to succeed. One of the most noteworthy trends to emerge out of small firms’ innovation by necessity is by pivoting away from traditional hard-copy record keeping and replacing it instead with a paperless option that saves on space, time, and money.

Modern Document Management

Paperless record keeping systems have grown up alongside professional business sectors. Thanks to the connectivity that’s driven the development of the internet, cloud computing, smart devices, and more, it’s becoming increasingly easy to store, organize, and retrieve documents digitally, all without having to rely on voluminous filing cabinets or endless photocopies. The costs associated with archived digital records is also just a fraction of what it would cost to safeguard physical copies, and the time spent managing these digital collections is also minuscule compared to sending someone to an off-site storage facility to locate a specific file that’s been archived for decades.

Paperless practices are further supported by the same technologies that enabled paperless document management in the first place. Mobile document capturing technologies have become commonplace when it comes to legal professionals working in the field; whether it’s a netbook, a tablet, or even a mobile phone, these devices can and do work in tandem with portable handheld scanners designed for document capture, making it easier than ever to work with legal documents while out of the office. Meanwhile, mobile connectivity ensures that these documents are stored in ways that ensure they are universally accessible.

Filing and Serving the Paperless Way

Even facets of the legal industry that are completely dependent on paper copies have seen a positive impact as a result of paperless technologies. Both court document filing and process of service have been streamlined by digital document management techniques. A prime example of this is how Rapid Legal offers paperless workflow systems that save law firms of all sizes time, effort, and legal fees.

Rapid Legal’s eFile-compliant system makes it possible for lawyers in California to directly upload digital versions of court documents that would otherwise have to be sent via courier to the court clerk. These files are then reviewed for errors before being transmitted electronically to a court that accepts electronic filing or printed and hand-delivered to courts who do not. Rapid Legal also enables process of service across the entirety of the United States through electronic means, relying on the same digital document transmission technologies.

Yet one thing remains clear: whether you use paperless technologies to manage your firm’s own documents or you use a support service to file court documents electronically on your behalf, you’re reaping the rewards of a paperless practice.With the benefits that going paperless provides to law firms, it’s only a matter of time before everyone has relegated hard copies to the dustbin of history.

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Out of the Office 24-7

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Out of the Office 24-7

Solo and Small Practice Trends in the Legal Industry: Out of the Office 24-7

When it comes to competing against massive law firms with dozens or even hundreds of lawyers, solo attorneys and small legal practices have learned to adapt. Small means agile and adaptable, able to provide better individual service to clients, and, above all, hardly ever being in the office.

This last trend — being out of the office seemingly 24-7 — is increasingly prevalent. Attorneys have always been known to burn the midnight oil, but thanks to modern developments and emergent working trends, it’s easier than ever to not set foot in the office for days at a time. Here’s how it works, and how the legal support industry has risen to support this trend.

A Universal Trend

American workers, including legal professionals, are simply sick and tired of being cooped up in the office. A 2016 Gallup survey found that 43 percent of respondents spent at least one or two days a week working out of office environments, up from just 39 percent in 2012. With the remote working and telecommuting trend picking up, it’s only natural that the legal profession is part of that trend.

Whether it’s taking depositions or interviewing clients, researching cases, filing court documents, or actually attending court dates, the career requirements for lawyers and legal staff are already itinerant. What’s changed for lawyers, however, is that now there’s even less need to check in at the office to do things like file paperwork, place phone calls, or attend meetings.

The Logistics of Keeping Out of the Office

Modern tech supports legal professionals who want to get out of their office. Whether you’re working out of the stillness of your own home office thanks to a desktop computer equipped with high-speed internet or if you’re constantly on the go and using mobile devices with good data plans to keep in contact with clients, partners, and staff, communication technologies have your needs covered.

This trend goes even further when it comes to supporting services associated with the legal profession. Cloud-based document storage and retrieval mean not having to be tied to a central server you can only access in one location. When you’ve got a little device in your pocket that can act like your personal law office, you don’t have to be physically present in a specific location to do your job.

The Perfect Example: Document Filing and Service Process

A shining example of how modern technology enables the contemporary lawyer to stay in the field for as long as they like is how handling legal documents has changed. The days of printing out documents at the office and then relying on courier services or process servers to hand deliver these documents, your legal practice can rely on a support service company like Rapid Legal to do the dirty work for you so that you don’t have to sweat about it.

An industry leader in eFiling California court documents and providing process of service across the United States, Rapid Legal makes it easy to both initiate and manage your legal document filing and serving from any location. Anywhere, anytime, and from any connected device, you can upload your documents and have the experts at Rapid Legal take care of the rest. Less time handling document needs means even more time out of the office — time that you can instead spend on providing your clients the kind of personal attention that they need.

law office online meetings

Five Awesome Free Online Meeting Solutions to Keep Your Law Office Productive

law office online meetings

Productivity in a professional setting is an important goal. However, sometimes that’s easier said than done, especially if you have a number of staff, associates, or partners working at different offices or locations. It can often feel like you’re fighting a losing battle keeping your office organized and productive!

Thankfully, there are some great solutions for organizing online meetings between disparate groups of professionals; here are five of the best cost-effective online meeting tools that are perfect for any legal service organization.

1. Join.Me

Available on desktop as well as iOS and Android mobile devices, Join.Me is a free service that provides not just online meeting and web conferencing but also screen sharing capabilities as well. The service offers the ability to use personalized URLs, to customize your meeting background, high-fidelity audio, and one-click screen sharing to make meetings go smoothly and easily. Join.Me is available for individuals, teams, or even complete businesses, and offers a free registration process.

2. GoToMeeting

GoToMeeting has been a major player in the world of online meeting solutions for a long time, but they’ve recently shaken up the game by providing a free version of their industry-leading paid services. The service runs natively in your Chrome web browser and also supports Mac, iPhone, and Android devices for easy, no-fuss screen sharing capabilities. This free version is ideal for smaller teams or client meetings, as you and up to three others can collaborate quickly and easily.

3. Zoom

With a number of industry accolades, Zoom’s online meeting services are agile and comprehensive. While there are paid membership options, Zoom’s basic free membership is surprisingly robust, offering up to 100 participants for meetings up to 40 minutes at a time. Full HD video and audio, web conferencing, screen sharing, and a bevy of group collaboration features round out this service, which is available on traditional systems like Mac, Windows, and Linux, as well as on iOS and Android.


Known primarily for its free phone conferencing offerings, also has surprisingly robust video and web conference capabilities as well. Screen sharing, video conferencing, recording with playback, and remote desktop tools make it a serious contender, and the ability to support as many as 1,000 conference lines is pretty remarkable as well. Keep in mind that this is all in addition to its already detailed and useful audio conference capabilities, which are useful in their own right.

5. UberConference

A quick and easy option that you can get up and running in a hurry, UberConference is unique in that you don’t need to juggle with clunky PINs to login to its system. Featuring a profile system that makes it easier to connect with contacts and network with them, UberConference provides screen sharing capabilities, offers a Google Chrome web browser extension, and works on both Android and iOS devices as well. There are plenty of other features as well, such as free call recording, document sharing, and even custom hold music.

Top 25 Hashtags for Law Firm Marketing on Instagram and Twitter

Top 25 Hashtags for Law Firm Marketing on Instagram and Twitter

Top 25 Hashtags for Law Firm Marketing on Instagram and Twitter

Hashtags — seems like they’re everywhere over social media. Whether it’s a photo on Instagram, a tweet on Twitter, or even a post on Facebook, those little tags are here to stay.

There’s a good reason hashtags have become so ubiquitous. With social media marketing becoming the new norm when it comes to promoting a business or brand, hashtags are a great way to ensure your message gets to those who are looking for specific content.

How Hashtags Help

Hashtags are great for categorizing content on social media. There’s such a high volume of posts, videos, and images out there on even just one platform that it’s easy for your marketing message to get lost in the crowd, but using a hashtag to highlight your content makes it stand out in searches related to that content.

In fact, in many instances, all it takes is adding a single hashtag to a post to get more eyes on it than it would have gotten otherwise. Research shows social media posts receive greater engagement than those with no hashtags. In other words, you’re missing opportunities not to hashtag your posts if you’re trying to reach a wider audience.

Hashtags and Law Services

It might seem like hashtags are most effective for categorizing entertainment content. There’s no denying that everyone from food bloggers to movie studios tags their content this way, after all. However, you can — and should — harness the power of hashtags if you’re looking to drive new clients through the door of your law offices.

Not every hashtag is created equal, of course. Some tags just engage better than others, and it can be a chore finding which ones resonate with your audience the best. Luckily, we’ve got you covered. Here are 25 of the best hashtags for law firms and attorneys who want to use social media marketing to grow their business.

The List


These are more than enough to keep you busy. Remember the rules of hashtagging: no more than two or three different ones with each post on Twitter. Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags. Make sure your content is engaging, and keep it short and sweet. Keep these guidelines in mind and your next hashtag marketing campaign is sure to be effective.

Lawyer Movies and TV Shows

The Top Ten Lawyer Movies and TV Shows of All Time

Lawyer Movies and TV Shows

There have been hundreds of entertaining films and television shows over the years that have depicted all facets of the legal profession. It’s not that shocking, really; if there’s one thing that’s universal, it’s that everyone loves a good courtroom drama. Picking the best? That’s another story altogether. Here’s a list of the top ten movie or TV shows about lawyers.

My Cousin Vinny

Featuring a fantastic cast that includes Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei, Ralph Macchio, and Fred Gwynne, My Cousin Vinny is more than just a hilarious fish-out-of-water story. In fact, its portrayal of criminal trial procedures is one of the most accurate in film history! IMDb >

Perry Mason

This classic television series turned Raymond Burr into a star. Running for nine seasons between 1957 and 1966, Perry Mason became the gold standard for courtroom dramas. IMDb >

A Few Good Men

“You can’t handle the truth!” There’s nothing like watching Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson go head-to-head in this military court drama, directed by Rob Reiner. A Few Good Men also featured star turns by Demi Moore and Kevin Bacon, to name just a few. IMDb >

Boston Legal

A spin-off from one of the other shows on our list, Boston Legal is best known for the brilliant comedic antics of James Spader and William Shatner. While it might have ended after just four seasons, this television show is highly memorable. IMDb >

Erin Brockovich

This Julia Roberts film is based on a true story of a real lawyer and her rise to fame after she tackled a high-profile case involving a poisoned municipal water source. Erin Brockovich the film is just as interesting as Erin Brockovich the real person. IMDb >

Law & Order

Before there were countless spinoffs there was the original. Law and Order, which ran from 1990 to 2010, was unique in that it showed both sides of criminal justice: both law enforcement and legal proceedings. IMDb >

To Kill a Mockingbird

This film, adapted from the famous Harper Lee novel, is a classic piece of movie history. Gregory Peck’s portrayal of small-town lawyer Atticus Finch is filled with dignity and gravitas as he defends an innocent black man from the ire of a prejudiced white jury. IMDb >

The Practice

The precursor to Boston Legal, this courtroom series ran from 1997 to 2004 and helped make actor Dylan McDermott the star he is today. The ethical themes explored in this show were thought-provoking and clever, earning The Practice a strong following. IMDb >

The Paper Chase

Required watching for law students, The Paper Chase is an absolute classic. Academy Award-winning actor John Houseman plays the dry, acerbic Professor Kingsfield, the world’s most demanding law school teacher. Houseman even reprised his role in the 1980s television series based on the film. IMDb >


The only TV show on this list still filming, Suits is the story of how a college dropout ends up working with one of the highest-profile law firms in New York City. Even more noteworthy, this series introduced newly-branded royal Meghan Markle to the world. IMDb >

Seven Ideas For Father’s Day Gifts For Lawyers

Seven Ideas For Father’s Day Gifts For Lawyers

Seven Ideas For Father’s Day Gifts For Lawyers

Father’s Day is just around the corner, and that means it’s time to get shopping for the favorite dad — or granddad — in your life. Fathers can be notoriously hard to shop for, though, and if you’ve got an attorney in your family that can make things even more difficult!

To that end, here’s a great list of some of the best ideas for Father’s Day gifts for lawyers. It’s never too soon to start shopping!

Personalized Items

Dads love getting personalized gifts, especially from beloved family members. Father’s Day gifts with your dad’s name or initials are always a great reminder of how much you think of them. From monogrammed pocket handkerchiefs to tie tacks with their initials, a gift with a personal touch shows you care.

Office Gifts

Lawyers spend a lot of time in their offices, and the lawyer dad in your life is no exception. A nice addition to their office, whether it’s a beautifully framed picture or a pen set that they can use whenever they’re signing legal documents, both makes their life easier as well as cheers up their office.

Sports Memorabilia

Most dads love sports — that’s not exclusive to lawyers. Whether it’s a couple of tickets to a basketball game, a signed rookie card for his favorite centerfielder, or a die-cast model of his favorite NASCAR stock car, showing your love by recognizing his love of sports is always a good idea.

Tech Toys

What dad doesn’t love a shiny new tech toy? Drones you can control from your iPhone, a new smart watch, even just a fancy new streaming device for the television in his den can be enough to keep him happy and entertained for hours!

A Night Out on the Town

Dads work hard, and dads who are lawyers work even harder. He deserves a night out, whether it’s with Mom, with friends, or with both, and that makes a gift card to his favorite restaurant a great option. Supercharge it with tickets to a movie or a show he’s been wanting to see for even better results!

A Good Book

Whether he’s an analog kinda guy or he reads on his tablet during his commute, dads love a good read. Can’t decide which book he’d like? Rely on an Amazon gift card and he’ll get whatever he likes, digital or not!

The DIY Gift

This one’s great for dads with younger kids or creative ones: a hand-crafted card, loaded with glitter and crayon, melts even the most stodgy of dad hearts. There’s no such thing as an ugly art project when it comes to your kids!

Rapid Legal's Boundaryless Legal Services

It’s All Local To Us — Rapid Legal’s No-Boundary Legal Services

Rapid Legal's Boundaryless Legal Services

Whether you need a process server to drop off paperwork with someone across the United States or just file your legal document in the court before the end of the day, Rapid Legal is the expert in providing no-boundary legal support services.

Whenever, Wherever, Whomever

When we say it’s all local to us, we mean it. No matter what you need done, the only step you need to take is to upload your documents to our secure servers. Our California court filing services mean never having to worry that your courier gets your documents to the court clerk in time. Meanwhile, our process serving is 100% nationwide, so you can just leave it in our hands and we’ll handle it for you. Whether you need service of process down the street, across the state, on the opposite coast, or anywhere in between, we’ve got you covered.

How does Rapid Legal manage to provide such no-boundary legal services? It’s because we work smarter, not harder. We’ve been on the forefront of electronic document management for a long time, and we’ve learned how to leverage technology to help legal professionals save both time and money. This has enabled us to provide not only nationwide service of process but also our comprehensive legal document filing service for courts across California, both for courts who accept electronic filing (eFiling) and those who require physical document delivery. We’re quick, we’re accurate, and we’re reliable.

Wrap up

Here at Rapid Legal, years of experience, combined with cutting-edge electronic records management technology, have come together to create a perfect storm of efficient, courteous, and affordable service. Never struggle to get your documents filed or served again.

Best Practices for Remote Working as a Lawyer

Best Practices for Remote Working as a Lawyer

Best Practices for Remote Working as a Lawyer

Legal professionals have long had to spend countless hours moving between the field and the office. However, having to return to the office countless times a day can quickly become a tedious task and one that can have a negative impact on your efficiency as a legal professional. Relying on new and emergent technologies to reduce this need by adopting mobile working is one solution, but you’ll need to know the best way to do so before transitioning to remote working yourself. Here are the best practices for remote working as a lawyer.

Your Firm Needs the Proper Infrastructure in Place

Before you even begin to consider remote working as a solution, you need to ensure your firm has the proper infrastructure in place to enable you to do so. There must be electronic methods for drafting and submitting legal documents to the firm’s servers, and these servers must be accessible to those outside the office in ways that are both convenient and secure. Firms also must be able to issue legal professionals any equipment they need to function in this manner, such as mobile devices that can scan and capture paper documents before being uploaded to a central connected server.

It’s Your Responsibility to Remain in Constant Communication

Remote working means reducing the amount of time you spend in the office by a significant margin, but this also means you’ll need to increase communications between you and your firm to a higher standard. Through emails, text messages, and phone calls, (and the hopefully occasional stop in the office) you’ll have to replace your physical absence by keeping your office manager, senior partner, or whoever it is you report to in the loop much more comprehensively on a daily basis. Remember: you’re being granted the privilege of remote working, so it’s your responsibility to keep lines of communication open.

You Need to Pay Close Attention to Your Work-Life Balance

Remote working has many advantages to your work-life balance, chief among them being able to set your own hours. However, this can also be a drawback if you don’t practice good time management skills. If you decide to time-shift non-critical work later and later into the day, you may often find yourself finishing these tasks late into the night, well after you would have done so if you were still working from your firm’s office. If these instances occur with increasing regularity, you ironically risk disrupting the same work-life balance that you began remote working for to begin with.

The Paradox of Remote Working

Remote working as a lawyer can be quite a paradox. While you relish the freedom and flexibility you gain from not having to report to the office every day, you have no one to rely on to regulate your daily routine except yourself. This means that, in order to be successful, remote workers need to keep highly regimented lives. Whether it’s constantly checking in with the office, ensuring that you’re not up until the small hours of the morning finishing your assigned tasks, or simply having the right tools to enable workflow from your laptop to your firm’s servers, remote working as demanding as it is rewarding.