Many professions are experiencing changes in how they do business because of the digital revolution—and the legal profession is no different. In the realm of law, record-keeping and accurate archiving of documents is a key component of the judicial process. Lawyers and legal analysts often depend on records from past cases to shed light on current ones. Not to mention their commitment to keep good records for their clients.
In many industries, paper filing systems are being phased out in favor of paperless offices. But there are those who attempt to cling to the old ways—not because the old ways are better, but simply because it is what they are used to. It is easier to continue rifling through filing cabinets after you’ve been doing it for ten, twenty, or thirty years than it is to search for documents on a computer. No one is comfortable with change when it happens.
That being said, here are three reasons why you should go digital with the archiving of your legal documents.
1. Digital archives create a permanent record.
It is much easier to destroy a paper record than it is to destroy a digital one. Even if no one intends to destroy paperwork, paper records can be lost, stolen, misplaced, or otherwise ruined to the point of being useless. On top of that, there is always the question of how many duplicate copies you should have, where to store those copies, and who should have access to them. A digital record eliminates these concerns. When legal documents are stored on a computer system or securely online, even though there is only one file, it is almost as if there is an infinite number of files because they are readily available to anyone who needs them.
2. Digital archives are easier to manage.
Handling a lot of paperwork physically is increasingly cumbersome in a world that relies on digital means. Having to update records that are only on paper can be a huge pain. How many copies do you have to update? And how can you be sure that the old records are completely gone? How do you communicate to the relevant parties that the copy they have is outdated and a new one is available. In this day and time, there is a much better way to do things. Case management software from Legal Files makes editing, managing, updating, and archiving case files and other legal documents a breeze.
3. Digital archives are more accessible and more secure.
What if you’re working from home on the weekend and you need a legal document that’s in the filing cabinet at the office or vice versa? With a digital archive, you can access stored legal files from your computer, tablet, phone, or other mobile device, making you more productive and more efficient. Some might think that having legal documents available over the internet is too insecure. But, this isn’t the case. Actually, more people are at risk of having their paperwork stolen from trash cans, dumpsters, and brick-and-mortar offices. Digital archives can be tightly managed so that only authorized individuals have access to them. On top of that, a digital system keeps a record of every user who accesses, downloads, updates, or otherwise interacts with a legal document making them more secure than ever.