Using the iPad for Your Law Practice

Every lawyer in my firm has an iPad.  We use it for everything from client intake, to taking notes, to case law research.  Here is a run-down of all the necessary apps for your legal enabled iPad.

SignMyPad: Allows you to port in PDF files and allows you to fill them in on the iPad.  You can fill in forms and sign fee agreements with your client then instantly email them to your client for verification.

Digits Calculator:  The iPad does not come with a built-in calculator and there are a lot of options in the App Store.  This app is great because it has a digitized traditional tape that you keep track of your calculations.

Dropbox:  This app is a must for any serious iPad user.  It lets you port files in and out of the iPad and syncs your files across all your computers.

NoteTakerHD/Penultimate:  These are two great note-taking apps.  If you are truly going paperless, then there shouldn’t be a need to take notes on a real piece of paper.  These two apps will put your notes into PDF format and you can use Dropbox to upload it to yourself on your computer or share it with others.

Square:  An excellent and cost effective credit card reader for your iPad or iPhone.  Depending on your jurisdiction’s Trust accounting rule for attorneys, you may or may not be able to use this to take credit cards from clients.

Fastcase:  Fastcase is a legal research app similar to Lexis or Westlaw, but for free on the iPad.  It is not as powerful as the two paid legal research tools but enough to get the job done while out of the office.

DaysFrom/CourtDays:  Both of these apps lets you calculate days from or out to a particular date.  This is useful to keep track of deadlines for court filings or to calculate effective dates of judgments quickly for your clients.

Zillow:  The online version has been distilled into a portable app that you can research the approximate values of real estate.

DocsToGo:  This is the iPad version of Microsoft Office.  It doesn’t have all the functionality, but for on-the-go editing, it does a great job.

TrialPad:  For any trial lawyer that does a good amount of trial work, this app is for you.  It is basically a trial binder and presentation tool rolled into one.  For a more detailed review of the app, check out my Tech Review.

Deponent:  This app lets you neatly organize your deposition documents and questions.

Skype:  For virtual offices or to communicate with out-of-state clients, Skype is more personal and cheaper than a telephone call.

PictureItSettled:  This app keeps track of settlement offers and predicts your opponents upcoming settlement offers and the range of the ultimate settlement.

FedCtRecords:  This app lets you access PACER.

Wolfram Lawyer’s Professional Assistant:  This app is by the makers of Wolfram, the online answer engine.  It comes with useful tax and estate planning calculators, a legal dictionary, statutes of limitations for all states, financial calculators, date calculator, life expectancy projector and much much more.

Gabriel is a divorce lawyer in Boston.  Visit his site at http://www.infinitylawgroup.com.