Going from Small Firm to Amicus Attorney
Total Practice Mobility
Small Firm is a 20+ year old product and does not offer the ability for you to access information via the web. (Scenarios: Do you or anyone at your office use an iPad and want to access your client documents from wherever you are? Do you need the calendar and contacts on your phone to be in sync with your Amicus back at the office all the time, like when you are in court?)Amicus Attorney gives you total practice mobility… Manage your practice from anywhere through a secure web browser.
- Get all the mobility advantages of the cloud with the security and power of the world’s leading desktop solution
- Manage client matter files, including documents
- See your day at a glance, access phone calls and messages, do time entries and more – from anywhere
- Instant coordination between your mobile device and your office
Superior Client Collaboration
Today’s clients expect collaboration, better service, and the ability to interact with you when it’s convenient for them. This is not a possibility with Small Firm (Scenarios: Do you use Dropbox and would like a direct link from your Amicus? Would you like to offer your clients the ability to share matter information with you on a secure client portal branded for your firm?) Easily share information with your clients using the secure online Amicus Client Portal.
- Enable clients to feel connected and in control of their legal work
- Clients can review documents, get updates, exchange messages and provide information through a secure portal
- Work faster, more collaboratively and demonstrate value to your clients
Billing, Collections and Trust (SFE – did not handle billing collections or trust at all)
With Amicus Small Firm, you did not have access to integrated billing, collections or trust. You could use a third party product, but that means multiple solutions, multiple databases, …. With Amicus Attorney, you get one integrated solution (simply toggle back and forth to see what you need) to manage both the professional and business sides of your practice giving you unprecedented visibility, control and the best possible workflow. Amicus Billing gets bills in your clients’ hands, and money in your bank account – fast!
- Add billing, collections and trust to Amicus Attorney
- Manage both the professional and business sides of your practice
- Do your work in Amicus Attorney, capture your time, and create fees, expenses, bills, trust entries and productivity reports, all within the same interface
Small Firm is not optimized for 21st century usability. While these may sound like minor features, the benefits and time savings created are immense.
- Amicus Attorney dynamically adjusts to any screen size
- Easier navigation through a matter – everything is laid out so you can get what you want with fewer clicks In Amicus Attorney, there’s a side bar that allows you to jump into different parts of the case file whereas in Amicus Small Firm, you need to right mouse click to do this.
- Have multiple files and contacts open at the same time
- Intelligent shortcuts Dynamic links between related items ex: task à case file, contact à communications, attach documents to an email from anywhere in Amicus – a file, another email, a note, a contact, …
- Global searches In Amicus Small Firm, titles and summary information is indexed, but file details, emails, documents… are not. With Amicus Attorney, all content is indexed, including documents
- Hide inactive clients from your contacts list Most firms only actively work with 10-15% of their contacts, making your contact list cluttered and unmanageable. With Amicus Attorney, you can choose to hide inactive clients to remove clutter while still including them in conflict checks
- Mass changes
- Administer directly from within Amicus (no need for a separate application)
Small Firm had some tools to enable internal collaboration, however they were fairly limited in scope.
- Firm-wide information on Contacts
- Change notifications on events
- Dynamic group assignments
- Role-based precedents
- Attach documents to internal notes In Small Firm, you can communication with team members via Sticky’s. Amicus Attorney takes this one step further an enables you to attach documents or document folders to internal Sticky’s, and a record of it is archived in the notes of the related file
- Unlimited custom fields
- Custom records
- The Amicus Attorney layout designer makes custom information more accessible
- Custom reports with SQL Report Writer
- Custom matter intake form There are no workflows in place in Small Firm to create a new matter file – a very time consuming process. With Amicus Attorney, you can create an intake form based on practice area to capture client information and reuse the fields for document generation later on.
Better Business Insight
- Business development features include referrals management
- Firm-wide reports help you understand your firm’s business as a whole
- Time entry statistics are graphically illustrated
- File to File relationships
- Eliminate duplicate contacts by consolidating records (search and merge)
Small Firm was built on older more unstable technologies making it vulnerable and subject to performance issues. With Amicus Attorney, not only are these non-issues, it is…
- Built on Microsoft SQL – the most stable, reliable, scalable, flexible and secure database in the world.
- Amicus Attorney’s SQL database is “relational” – relate anything to as many different things as you need Scenario: a phone call – you may have 2 clients on the same call, speaking of the 3 matters you are working on for them. In Small Firm, you can only show 1 contact and 1 file on a call record, so to make sure your notes of this call were in the right place, you would have to create 6 phone call records. But with Amicus Attorney, just make one note, and it will appear everywhere you need it.
Plus so much more…
Going from Small Firm to Amicus Attorney – Detailed
Amicus Anywhere is an extension of Amicus that provides a secure, instant, live connection to Amicus Attorney through a web browser. So whether you want to use a home PC, Mac, iPad or smartphone, you can manage your practice from wherever you are.
Amicus Anywhere gives you the best of both worlds. The security of having your own database on your own server – nothing is stored in the cloud or on your device. And there’s nothing additional to install. You get the full power and functionality of the world’s best, most complete practice management system – far, far more than any “cloud” product. And you get the convenience to practice law anytime, on any device and the luxury to do so anywhere you want.
Interactive Home Page
The icon-driven interactive Home Page gives you an incredibly easy way to see all your most important items of the day and quickly take action.
It’s like a control center for your firm. It shows you appointment reminders, phone messages, tasks/deadlines, un-posted time entries and more. At a glance you get instant feedback on the things that need attention and you have the ability to start working on them with a single click.
Amicus TimeTracker brings Amicus Attorney to your mobile phone. See and do your time entries on your smartphone, anytime, anywhere! Amicus TimeTracker works on modern smartphones like iPhones, Androids and Blackberries.
Time Entry Assistant
The Time Entry Assistant displays a list of all appointments, completed to do’s, phone calls, emails, notes and documents where no time entry has yet been recorded.
Filter your list by date range or choose to exclude items without a File assigned to them, outstanding phone calls and emails, notes or documents from your search. With Small Firm, this feature was not available for phone calls.
Review the list, and with a single click:
- create that missing Time Entry
- use the Time Saver feature to auto-fill Time Entries for one or more items without having to open the detail dialog
- open the detail dialog of each selected item
- better manage your time by optionally ignoring the selected item so the Time Entry icon will no longer appear in list views This feature was not available in Small Firm.
- assign selected item(s) to a file
- print selected item(s)
Time Entry Summary
The Time Entry Summary feature gives you a valuable look at the billable and non-billable time entries associated with a file including a summary of posted and un-posted time on the file.
With the new Graphical Time Sheets feature, you get a visual snapshot of your time sheet statistics. See at a glance how you are performing compared to your monthly/yearly goals.
Documents Wherever You Go
Access all of your documents, wherever you are! Amicus Attorney lets you work with your documents more efficiently, with the highest level of convenience, flexibility and mobility.
Documents in Amicus Anywhere
Using just a web browser, you can view all the documents you have in Amicus. You can work with them, add new ones and know that they are instantly available to anyone working on their particular file.
Best of all, because the documents are stored on your own server (and not in the cloud) you have the peace of mind knowing that you have complete security and control over your data!
Dropbox in Amicus
Amicus Attorney integrates with Dropbox, turning this popular mobility tool into a lawyer’s filing cabinet.
Amicus automatically creates folders in Dropbox for all your client files, so when you add a document to that folder in Dropbox it instantly appears in Amicus, associated with the client file. Anyone with access to that file in Amicus can access the documents you just added to Dropbox. And, because your Dropbox documents are in Amicus, they are fully indexed and searchable – enabling you to find any document in a flash!
Amicus Anywhere’s documents also integrate with Dropbox – so you can use one, the other, or both together.
From a contact record, you can see at a glance a complete list of all matter files that person has referred to your firm.
And if you have Amicus Billing and you are a Billing Supervisor, you can see the value of the total fees on the files each contact has referred.
Contact Drop Zone
The QuickEdit box on contact cards provides the fastest way possible to add contact information to your people. Simply copy-and-paste or drag-and-drop text from any application into this “drop zone” and it’s added to the contact card. Imagine – you can copy a person’s email signature straight into a contact record! Or you can just type an entire address and phone number into the drop zone – Amicus intelligently puts each element into the correct field, so you don’t have to type into all those little boxes. Amazingly fast and convenient!
All users of Amicus Attorney automatically have contact cards with special attributes. A firm directory is available in the People Module and filters on File Details make it much easier to see all the people involved in a file.
Pictures on Contacts
Amicus Attorney lets you put a face to a name. Include pictures of your contacts.
Business Card Map
See a map to your contact’s location.
Unlimited Addresses, Phone Numbers and People Groups
List as much information on your contacts as you want. You can also have an unlimited number of people group designations.
Designate Contacts as Individuals or Companies
Designate a contact as a company, and then link the individuals to that company. If that company moves their office and changes their contact information, all you have to do is change the contact info for the company card and it will automatically update all the individual contacts.
Chronologies on Contacts
View a chronology of every type of record relating to a contact. Take a more “people centric” approach to your practice if you prefer.
Create an unlimited number of customizable fields with flexible layouts and track additional information with unlimited custom records.
Amicus Administrators can change phone labels from either Mobile to Cell or Cell to Mobile for existing contacts or firm members that are assigned this phone label. Great for standardizing data and allows for more accurate Outlook synchronizations.
Easily share information with your clients using the secure online Amicus Client Portal. Enable clients to feel connected and in control of their legal work. Clients can review documents, get updates, exchange messages and provide information through a secure portal. You decide which fields to share with which clients, so they see the information you want. Work faster, more collaboratively and demonstrate value to your clients!
SQL Server Reporting Services
Easily run and edit reports directly from Amicus through SQL Server Reporting Services. Sort, refresh and even access Amicus data directly from interactive reports.
Show Fields in File Index
Add more columns to your Index to show the Primary Client on the File, the Responsible Lawyer and whether the File is flagged to be excluded from the exchange with your accounting system. Easier to work with, easier to manage!
Easily identify the Primary Client on a file which is shown in bold on the People on the File listing.
Classified As Client
Gain flexibility by customizing any Role on a File to be classified as a Client Role category (ie: client, contact at clients, client’s accountant…). You can use this designation to filter for Contacts assigned to a role on a file that is classified as a client role.
Custom Pages/Records on Multiple File Types
Assign a Custom Page or Record to multiple file types. This provides more flexible customization for Administrators and better matter lifecycle management of Amicus Files. And you can switch the file type of an individual file and maintain custom field data.
Take full advantage of screen real estate by setting file details to open full screen by default with the navigation pane hidden. You can also open more than one file detail at a time.
Create an unlimited number of customizable fields with flexible layouts for each file type and track additional information with unlimited custom records.
Create associations between related files.
Optionally include note records in chronological lists on files.
Record, review and post expenses on each file for select accounting links.
There are many features for managing your precedents, including a precedent profile dialog that allows you to view a precedent’s events in a “tree” showing linked event relationships. You can also create new precedents based on old ones, edit existing ones, assign firm members or firm groups to precedents and filter your list of available precedents to display only yours.
The Documents module gives you better control of your documents making it easier than ever to locate, retrieve and work with documents – from a single consolidated location.
In a single click you can open, edit and print documents, add new or delete existing documents, create time entries, check documents in or out and add them to your Favorites list for quick access. All without having to open the file or contact details! With Small Firm, this feature was only ever available for files. With Amicus Attorney, you can do this from either the file or contact.
Use the powerful filters to segment by file type, date range, author or document group. You can also choose whether to include only your active files, your closed files or all files.
Easily search all documents on files, contacts and events using the full-text search or the title and summary search. And for a more targeted search, from a filtered list. Search results show the document title, any associated files and/or contacts, assigned document groups, the author, and the date the document was created.
Track each version of a document, all under the same document record, so you can quickly revisit any previous version, see what was changed, when, and by whom (uses “Amicus Managed” mode).
Preview documents right from the list in Amicus. So you can rapidly scan through the list, looking at each in turn, right in place.
Attach documents to your email right from your Amicus documents list.
Enhanced Document Assembly
Document templates can be made available for use by named individual firm members. There are many variables and flexible document generation options, better template naming conventions and a document template tree for easy selection.
Have more control over your documents through a feature called “Amicus Managed Documents”. By enabling the feature, you can have Amicus manage the location and the accessibility of all of the documents that are attached to Files, Contacts or Library Pages. This is controlled by a firm-wide setting so that you can make it mandatory for everyone to adhere to the program. Amicus will automatically create network file folders for each client/matter file. All of the documents you attach to that file will be stored in that folder, regardless of where they were created. Amicus will also manage the process of accessing those documents – making people “Check-in” and “Check-out” the documents they are working on. This ensures that a consistent version of the document is maintained when multiple people are working on a file. Managed Documents are fully indexed for fast full-text searching when you are looking for something.
Documents on Contacts
When you have documents that relate to a person, but not necessarily to a specific file, you can attach the document directly to the contact.
Amicus Attorney is dynamically linked to all the applications in Microsoft Office. Word will recognize the names of your files and contacts as you type them, allowing you to call up their information without ever leaving your document. You can also do a time entry for drafting a document – right from the document.
Print documents directly from a file without having to open the document.
Full Text Search
Microsoft Indexing Service allow for incredibly fast full-text searching and retrieval.
Use something often? Then save time by making it a favorite. Whether it is a File, Person, Note, Document, Library Page, or even a Search Profile, all this can all be added to your Favorites list for fast and effortless access. Commonly used items are never more than a click away.
It’s easy to add items to your Favorites list. Simply right click on any list and choose Add to Favorites, or use the option from the Edit drop-down menu. Your Amicus Attorney Favorites integrates automatically with all of your Internet Explorer Favorites to create a one-stop location for easy access to the information you use most often.
Decide what you want to see, where and how. Design your own screens – put the information and tools together that you want to work with. Work efficiently when you can have all the information that is most important to you together in one place. Create as many dashboards as you’d like. With the Amicus Dailies Dashboard, you are in control!
Easily design a visual display combining your Amicus data and external information, such as network files and folders or websites, in a single screen. Select data views needed to achieve your specific objectives, be it strategic, analytical or operational. Choose from a variety of data lists, summaries, new record items, tools and utilities, embedded browsers, etc. Mix several data types or create multiple Dashboards to support the different aspects of your practice.
Customize Your View
Design a screen to visually present data how you want it. Pick how many sections you want displayed in your Dashboard and use color, shape, size and borders to draw attention to important elements or to create visual groupings. And as your needs change, you can modify your Dashboard to reflect your new priorities.
Interact with Data
Easily interact with data right from your dashboards.
Improved Conflict Check
Build a custom conflict check by picking what elements of Amicus should be searched, including custom fields, time entries, notes and more and save or print results in an easy to read report.
Multiple Name Check
Save time by performing a conflict check for multiple names in a single search session.
A new advanced setting offers a broader range of searchable fields including custom contact and file text fields, file summary, file status, event title and notes, communications to/from, and many more.
Conflict check results are output in an easy to read report including an outline of the criteria searched, a comments column, and a separate column indicating the field in which the match was found.
Print the report or optionally save the results and attach it to an Amicus File. Printouts include the searched names(s) and the user who ran the report in addition to comprehensive information about any matches.
In addition to ensuring that all pertinent file information is captured at the time an Amicus file is opened, you can customize your firm’s Intake Forms to prompt users to perform specific actions.
Perform a conflict check against new clients.
Ensure that events relative to file type are properly scheduled from the outset by applying a precedent.
Generate a pre-selected document such as a standard letter to a client requesting a retainer, a file opening summary to use as part of its new file administration or a file label.
Save time by sending a template-based email addressed to a client.
Send Phone Messages by Email
Alert firm members about new phone messages via email, so you can be confident that phone messages are being received – promptly. Of course, messages will also appear in the recipients’ communications lists. And if marked urgent, a Sticky will also be sent.
In a single click, an email message, complete with all the phone message details, is automatically generated and ready to send.
Returned Phone Messages
Optionally set your Amicus preferences to automatically note that a phone message has been returned on the phone call summary, including the date and time the message was left.
Phone Call Dialog
See who placed a call and to whom, even conference calls. You can also classify records using the new status flags and convert phone calls to messages.
Resizable Phone Call Dialog
Resize a phone call window in the event that you need to be able to see underlying windows. A single click makes it easy to toggle between small and standard sizes. You can also use the drag feature to make it smaller or larger depending on your needs.
Optionally view your Outlook embedded directly in your Amicus Communications module. If you manage multiple Outlook mailboxes you have access to all of them. Cc and Bcc capabilities have been added in addition to enhanced attachment handling and improved auto save settings. You can see at a glance whether an email is marked as urgent or if has been saved to Amicus, and to what file.
Save document attachments to a file at the same time as saving the email message.
Photos on Email
If a contact or firm member has a photo included in their contact record, that photo will automatically display in the email dialog providing a nice visual reminder of who the message is from.
Filters allow you to refine what you see in your list, so you can narrow it down to what’s important.
Date Range View
The date range view allows you to expand the scope of your Communications lists.
Firm Member Availability
Trying to contact, locate or schedule something for another firm member and don’t have the time to track them down? You can check on the current availability of all firm members from anywhere in Amicus Attorney. This feature is especially useful for receptionists, assistants and administrators. It is also helpful for firms who delegate work amongst paralegals, articling students, junior associates and for teams who share resources.
Filter the firm member availability list to show all firm members or just your workgroup. You can also look up specific firm members.
You can also view at a glance another firm member’s workload status (heavy, medium, light).
Looking Good in Higher Resolution
Want larger, clearer fonts? Bigger dialog boxes to read and work in? Amicus brings that to you with enhanced high resolution options.
Outlook Signatures – Beautiful and Professional!
With the enhanced support of graphics in your Outlook signature, you can very easily display a logo or image – adding to your firm’s professional look.
Add To File – Save Time With a Single Click!
Small time savers add up to huge efficiencies! With the new “Add to File” option, you can quickly associate contacts, phone calls, tasks and appointments to one or more files with a single click from lists throughout Amicus.
Licensing Amicus is easier than ever. With the new fully automated process, all you have to do is submit your request and your license file is automatically transmitted to your Amicus Server and applied overnight.
And if you don’t want to wait until the next day, your Amicus Administrator can easily apply the license immediately with just a single click.
Add an unlimited number of custom fields available in over a dozen different formats including: Line, Frame, Text, Memo, Drop-down lists, Checkboxes, Numeric, Currency, Percent, Date, Time, Look-up (People, Files, Firm Members, Events), Path/URL, Email, SSN, SIN, Graphic. You can set default values and screen hints, and even choose to have certain custom fields included in conflict of interest checks.
Track any additional type of information required with Custom Records. A custom record is a group of custom (and standard) fields collected together for a defined purpose. You can have as many custom records as you like, shown in lists on each file. Use summary and total fields across lists of custom records for calculations. For example, Personal Injury attorneys could define medical expense records and see a running total on each file. Corporate attorneys might define special records for tracking specialized information on each shareholder in a company, cross-referencing them to contacts and producing a list of total shares.
Custom Field Output
Working with your custom field information outside Amicus just got easier. Output formatted information from custom fields and custom records into Microsoft Word or Excel with just a few clicks. No need to create a separate merge template.
Whether from a single file or across multiple files, simply pick the type of data you want and choose your format. From there, you can easily work with your data. Sort it or copy and paste it into another document.
Amicus Attorney has multiple levels of access control so you can be confident everyone can see what they need to, but suitable levels of privacy are maintained. Access to Amicus itself is secured with two unique ID’s and a password. Once logged in, you can only access information that you have created or been assigned to. For example, only those who are assigned to files can see the contents of those files, unless you have specifically been granted access at the administrator level to see everything in the firm. Or if you want everyone to see everything, this can be set up as well, without the need to make multiple assignments.
Amicus Attorney extends security and makes it entirely customizable by your firm. Define security profiles for each individual or group in your firm, establishing what types of records they can see and what controls and actions they can use. In addition, you can mark any of your own records as restricted so no one else can see them.
Files/People Auto-Complete Feature
When assigning files or contact records, you can start typing a short file name or person’s name (instead of clicking the select files or select people icon), and Amicus will display a drop-down list of your matching files or people. Click one to select it. Very useful when you are adding a new phone message, adding events, associating selected notes etc.
Date Entry Formats
Date entry format options have been added for international firms allowing you to use whatever your regional settings are (e.g. Day Month Year, Month Day Year).
Expanded currency options include Pounds and Euros. You can also choose where to have the currency symbol appear and whether to use a decimal or comma separator.
The Help Center provides ready access to a variety of useful information including user and administrator help, various guides, web update information and links to support, product information, consultant locator, training courses and the like.
Many to Many Relationships
Have multiple files or contacts on the same record. For example a single phone call can be related to 3 files and 5 contacts, even associate multiple firm members.
The Amicus-wide search will search across all modules and record types and bring back results in a single view. Find things no matter where they are stored. Or define and reuse sophisticated searches that give you insight into your practice.
The “group by” feature allows you to manage large lists more effectively by breaking them down into categories.
Audio Reminder Alerts
Choose from a variety of audio options or optionally select your own audio recordings.
All the module views in Amicus can be sized to fit whatever window you want to put them in – with useful data areas, not just graphics.
Colleague and Assistant Guest Access
Two levels of guest access are available to suit your needs.
Administrative functions are provided within the same program as user functions. Administration can also be done from any workstation or even over the web given the user has sufficient rights. Many configurations are done through easy to use wizards. A flexible user management view, improved security profiles, a new licensing model and new utilities make administration a breeze.
Add billing, collections and trust to Amicus Attorney making it a complete practice management solution that manages both the professional and business sides of your practice. Do your work in Amicus Attorney, capture your time, and create fees, expenses, bills, trust entries and productivity reports, all within the same interface.
Amicus Billing gets bills in your clients’ hands, and money in your bank account – fast!
Outlook Server Side Link Through Exchange
The Amicus server can connect directly to Exchange, so Amicus is always up to date with your email, even when your PC is turned off. This means that your mobile devices are always up to date with what is happening in Amicus too.
Google Goes Automatic
The Amicus Attorney Google link includes automatic synchronization for all changes on appointments and contacts. In simple terms, this means that changes you make in Amicus will always be updated in Google, and changes made in Google will instantly be updated in Amicus, without you having to do a thing – ensuring everyone has the most recent information.
Third Party Links
Amicus Attorney integrates with the latest version of many third-party products including:
- Adobe Acrobat