Homework Assignment #1

Part 1

Five good things about running a VLP:
  1. It's a time-saver. You don't have to wait for a client to come in and, for the most part, you are saving yourself travel time when you have to go out and meet someone.
  2. You can automate a lot of processes, like jurisdiction checks.
  3. It's a paper-saver. No need to send out letters and make copies on top of copies when it's all saved as pdf's, doc's, etc. Backups can all be done digitally.
  4. You can do things according to your own schedule.
  5. It adds additional means of communication with clients (video chat, IM, email, etc.)

Five things that could go wrong with running a VLP:
  1. The internet can go down - especially at critical moments (whether it's the fault of the ISP or weather).
  2. Your computer can break (physical issues).
  3. Your computer could get viruses, hacked, etc. (software issues).
  4. Clients may not have the means to communicate digitally and can only do things "the old-fashioned way" so all your tech is useless.
  5. Communications could get mixed up and sent to the wrong individuals (or not at all).

Part 2

Definitions of "Virtual Law Practice," "Digital Law Practice," and/or "eLawyering."
  • Lawyering using web-based technology. Source
  • The delivery of legal services online through a section of a law firm's web site that is a known as a secure "client portal." Source
  • An online law practice that exists through a secure log-in portal and can be accessed by both client and attorney anywhere an internet connection is available. The site allows attorneys and clients to communicate securely over the internet and conduct other business normally conducted face-to-face. Source
  • A law firm that: (1) Has a stable core group of attorneys; (2) Has established collaborative relationships with other, specialized law firms that possess expertise that’s occasionally needed; (3) Is glued together with appropriate computer and telecommunications technology; and, (4) Expands and reduces personnel as needed. Source