Indiana Legal Services Flourishes with LegalServer’s Case Management Tools

Feb 14, 2020

Established in 1966, Indiana Legal Services (ILS) is the largest provider of civil legal aid to low-income Indiana residents. The organization handles cases where their clients’ access to basic life necessities - food, housing, income, and safety - are at risk.

ILS logo

With an ever-growing caseload, ILS tapped LegalServer to streamline and simplify their approach to case management. Tools like Text Messaging, Advanced Grants Management, and built-in customizable Reports are making a big difference for their staff.

“I love being able to easily open items in a new window; I can leave the report open and look at a case and then go back to my report window without having to re-run the report,” says ILS Managing Attorney Tracy Pappas. “I also like having different parts of the case open in different windows if I am checking on a couple of parts of the case file.”

reports module

Collaboration is a lot easier too, says Pappas. “It is so easy in LegalServer to transfer a case to another attorney and send the email about the transfer (and have proof in LegalServer that I did that!).”

Tracy Pappas headshot
LegalServer is helping my practice become more paperless.
Tracy Pappas
Managing Attorney

Jamel Pacha, ILS Director of IT, echoes that sentiment. “We now have so much more flexibility in being able to go totally paperless,” he notes. “For example, we can now eliminate using a three page paper document before closing each case.”

While the tailored app was evolving, LegalServer’s specialists provided the support Pacha and his team needed.

Jamel Pacha headshot
The LegalServer Onboarding team leadership was excellent during the development of our CMS.
Jamel Pacha
Technology Director

To optimize the benefits of a case management platform, the software has to be usable - and ILS now has one set of tools that is saving them a lot of time.

Tom Frohman headshot
Legalserver’s ease of use is impressive.
Tom Frohman
Managing Attorney

Simple reporting, paperless operations, and high usability? Check, check, and check - LegalServer now has ILS covered throughout the lifespan of over 10,000 cases per year.

A big thanks goes out to ILS for sharing their experiences with LegalServer. If you’d like to see how smarter software can empower your attorneys, reach out to us.

Why Should Attorneys Care About Software Usability?

Nov 25, 2019



  • The extent to which software can be used to effectively and efficiently achieve users’ objectives.

Legal aid and public defense attorneys are overloaded with demand for their services. In 2017, a single public defender in Louisiana was tasked with juggling 194 felony cases - a caseload that would require five full-time lawyers to properly serve.

While that’s an extreme example, it’s illustrative of a universal problem in the indigent legal services world: a lack of time. It’s no wonder that attorneys are constantly searching for ways to improve efficiency.

Case management software is an integral tool to that end. However, if there are usability problems with the platform, the advocate may actually become less efficient. Bad software causes distraction and confusion, which inevitably leads to lost time - and even worse things, it turns out.

Distractions are Deadly

Interruptions in our day can add up and really cost us time.

Gloria Mark, professor of Informatics at UC Irvine and author of “Multi-tasking in the Digital Age,” studies how people interact with information technology and how it affects multitasking, attention, mood, and above all, stress.

Through her studies, Ms. Mark has found it can take up to 23 minutes to get back on task following a single distraction.

Attorneys working in legal aid and public defense cannot afford to waste time getting information into or out of a case management system. That’s why usability is so important, but what makes some systems more usable than others? It boils down to simplicity and personalization.

The Fundamentals of Highly Usable Software

  1. Eliminate everything but the essentials. A simple interface that presents only what’s necessary is ideal. The input fields, menu options, and modules available to each User should vary based on Roles & Permissions. While an Administrator might have access to every single option in the system, an Intern should only see basic functionality.

  2. Adapt to desired or pre-established workflows. Highly usable case management software is malleable. Everything from Dashboards and Intakes to Reports and Document Management should be configured to match the way the organization operates in the real world.

  3. Good data goes in, and good data comes out. Data integrity starts with smart input fields that optimize efficiency and accuracy. Detailed Reports should output everything the organization needs to measure efficacy and satisfy funding requirements.

Aaron Krause headshot
Through hundreds of engagements, and working with thousands of attorneys, we’ve found a way to configure case management software that makes it highly usable for every user.
Aaron Krause
Director of Legal Solutions

Maximizing usability in case management software, which we can define as “effectively and efficiently entering, locating, and sharing information,” can add up to significant time savings. LegalServer has found organizations can save over 80 hours per year, per staff employee, by using a system attuned to the precise needs of the organization.

Learn more by trying our time savings calculator, and if you’d like to see how usable LegalServer truly is, contact us to schedule a demo.

LegalServer Community Thrives at 2019’s National Training

Oct 25, 2019

A record number of 55 attendees from across the country gathered in Chicago on October 17th and 18th, 2019, for LegalServer’s sold-out National Training, where participants honed their case management skills and networked with peers firsthand.

Chicago street

Once again hosted by Legal Aid Chicago, the event offered in-depth training on many subjects, including:

  • New tools and enhancements,
  • Forecasting & Dashboards,
  • Advanced problem solving, and
  • Pro Bono Tools.

“We presented on topics ranging from specific features, like Guided Navigation and SMS, to broader concepts such as coordinated Intake and change management,” says Leah Brach, LegalServer Customer Support Specialist. “We also incorporated more ‘office hours’ sessions than ever before to give attendees the chance to work through issues and questions in a one-on-one environment.”

national training with xander

The most popular features we trained on were Guided Navigation and Reports. Simulated labs allowed Users and Administrators to practice building and modifying Reports. Sessions were led by the expertise of LegalServer staff, and augmented by teamwork between Users from different organizations.

A deeper understanding of the software’s Reporting capabilities will help provide better data for grant funders and drive important decisions for agencies.

Leah Brach headshot
Sessions ranged from beginner to advanced topics to suit the wide variety of participants. As always, the LegalServer team enjoyed being able to connect with attendees in person and facilitate networking between LegalServer users.
Leah Brach
Customer Support Specialist

A point of emphasis at this year’s conference was to give trainees additional time to network and collaborate with allies from other organizations. The sense of community was apparent with these folks as they worked together to get the most out of LegalServer and help each other serve their clients better. “We’ll definitely be doing more of this at future trainings,” concludes Brach.

Vivian Hessel headshot
It was great to see so many people coming together to share ideas about new ways to use LegalServer. We all want to serve more clients and do our work more efficiently, and the conference was a great opportunity for people to learn ways to do both.
Vivian Hessel
Chief Information Officer

Thanks to all who attended this year’s National Training, and we hope to see you again next year! For information about additional training opportunities, or to demo our time-saving software, please contact us.

How Public Defenders Use Software to Serve Clients Better

Sep 24, 2019

Attorney Patrick Feldman works in a high-volume criminal defense firm in the Pacific Northwest. He handles a number of public defense cases each year, and was frustrated by a lack of specialized tools to help manage those cases - until he found LegalServer.

“We transitioned to LegalServer from another platform used by many public defenders across the U.S.,” says Feldman. “There are multiple features built into LegalServer that now allow us to be more efficient in case handling.”

case management

Since adopting LegalServer, Feldman and his colleagues have found it much easier to serve clients - and not just when they’re in the office. “With LegalServer’s web-based system, we can now obtain and update case information while in court, saving a lot of time in not having to re-type,” he adds.

Feldman says correspondence has improved as well. “Built-in email allows us to more effectively capture client communication in case records,“ he says. LegalServer also includes tools that allow for SMS (text) messages, VOIP telephone, and voicemail integration, along with built-in web messaging.

Patrick Feldman headshot
The reporting engine built into LegalServer has made a big difference for us.
Patrick Feldman
Criminal Defense Attorney & Public Defender

No two organizations run the same way, so each LegalServer implementation is unique. LegalServer onboarding specialists collaborated with Feldman’s team to ensure their requirements were met, resulting in case management software that bends for the user - not the other way around. “Working with the expertise of the LegalServer team to configure the system to our specific needs gives us a platform that is much more usable to how we operate,” says Feldman.

Once the configurations were done, trainers walked Feldman and his team through the entire system before going live. While using the software in the wild, support specialists were never far away. “LegalServer staff went above and beyond to make sure we were suitably trained and kept in close contact after we were live to ensure a smooth transition,” he says.

With streamlined workflows, easy data access, and better communication, Feldman and his colleagues are saving plenty of time - and that means they can serve indigent clients better. If you’d like to see how LegalServer can transform your public defense operations, please reach out to us.

How Community Legal Aid SoCal Saves Time with LegalServer

Sep 18, 2019

With 30 attorneys, 100 staff members, and four locations across Southern California, Community Legal Aid SoCal is one of the largest non-profit legal agencies in the state. To optimize services for clients at such a large scale, CLA SoCal tapped LegalServer to transform its case management game plan.

CLA SoCal logo

Since going live earlier this year, the organization quickly put LegalServer’s configurable Intake tools to use, helping preserve its most precious asset - time. “The Pre-screen form is fantastic in streamlining our intake process,” says John Cross, Database Manager, Community Legal Aid SoCal. “It keeps us from creating intakes and saving data for clients who end up not being clients.”

prescreen module

By cutting down on wasted effort, CLA SoCal is able to dedicate more time to its mission of serving low-income people’s legal needs. But freeing up hours in the day isn’t the only advantage of their tailored case management system.

LegalServer’s easy-to-use Reports - which provide internal insights and generate important data for funders - are proving to be another big benefit. “Before we only had one person who could create and run reports,” explains Cross. “Now it is a lot easier for more people to run multiple reporting scenarios.”

legalserver reports

John Cross headshot
The reporting engine built into LegalServer has made a big difference for us.
John Cross
Database Manager

Over the past two decades, we at LegalServer have learned that combining time savings with better data collection and reporting is a winning strategy. Using this proven approach, CLA SoCal’s impact on its community - through advice, counsel, clinics, workshops, and direct representation - is amplified.

If you’d like to see how LegalServer can empower your agency with better software, please let us know.

It’s Time to Register for LegalServer National Training Chicago 2019!

Sep 04, 2019

The LegalServer user community will return to Chicago this fall for our annual national training event. Tickets are now available for the focused two-day program, which will take place on October 17th and October 18th, 2019.

LegalServer’s National Training is your chance to learn some best practices in configuring and supporting your agency’s instance of LegalServer, and to share knowledge and experience with colleagues. This two-day event will be graciously hosted by Legal Aid Chicago.

Legal Aid Chicago logo

Your Training Plan

Check out the event agenda (subject to revision) to explore some of the topics we’ll cover in Chicago. Special daily breakout groups will allow you to focus on specific features of your choosing, like grants management, the SMS (texting) module, and advanced problem solving topics.

You’ll collaborate with fellow LegalServer site administrators, grant managers, and report writers, receiving focused training on new and existing features. LegalServer developers, including lead developer Jon Snell, will also be in attendance to demonstrate existing features and brainstorm on new ones. Training topics will include:

Day 1
  • Report Writing Fundamentals
  • New Tools & Enhancements
  • Advanced Grants Management
  • SMS (Texting Module)
  • Forecasting & Dashboards
  • Pro Bono Tools
  • Office Hours with LegalServer Staff
Day 2
  • Guided Navigation
  • Coordinated Intake & Referral
  • Online Intake Methods
  • Introduction to APIs & API Workshop
  • Report Writing
  • Advanced Problem Solving
  • Office Hours with LegalServer Staff

Reserve your ticket


Attendees are responsible for booking their own lodging, and we suggest registering early for the best prices and options. Several hotels are available in the Chicago Loop neighborhood where the event will take place, including:

Attendees can also book a hotel located near an “L” train stop (Brown, Orange, Pink, Purple, Blue) for public transportation access to LAF Chicago, which is located at:

Legal Aid Chicago
120 S LaSalle St #900
Chicago, IL 60603

Improved Legal Aid for New York City’s Low-Income Renters

Aug 08, 2019

In 1972, Housing Conservation Coordinators (HCC) was founded to combat the deteriorating housing conditions experienced by tenants in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen/Clinton neighborhood. Over the years, HCC has expanded and evolved to protect tenants in a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood where landlords now target low-income residents in rent-protected buildings to take advantage of the skyrocketing value - and increasingly unlawful nature - of Manhattan real estate.

HCC logo

In New York City Housing Court, 99% of tenants are unrepresented, and often pressured into signing disadvantageous settlements in the busy hallways of housing court without even seeing a judge.

That’s where HCC steps in, providing free legal services to over 3,000 New York residents annually. Having a knowledgeable housing attorney is crucial for protecting tenants, preserving affordable housing, and building and maintaining strong communities.

LegalServer and HCC

HCC uses LegalServer prescreens to capture the many walk-ins, phone calls, and other inquiries they receive from neighborhood residents, allowing for better reports on the number of folks who benefit from their counsel and expertise every day. The clinics module in LegalServer lets HCC better organize both clients and staff to efficiently manage and allocate resources, optimizing the legal aid they provide.

legal clinics module

In addition to housing services, HCC’s legal representation includes immigration, benefits, elder law, and consumer debt - all efficiently managed via LegalServer. To learn more about how HCC is positively impacting their community, check out their website and follow them on Twitter.

If you’d like to see for yourself how LegalServer can streamline, organize, and automate your work to save you time, please contact us today.

Riseboro Community Partnership Protects Brooklyn's Tenants with LegalServer

Jul 09, 2019

Apartment renters in Brooklyn, New York face many challenges these days. Housing prices are rising quickly - as is the temptation for landlords to unlawfully evict tenants, who are often unaware of their rights under the law.

The Legal Empowerment & Assistance Program (LEAP) at Riseboro Community Partnership is fighting against these trends with efforts to stabilize housing in the community.

RiseBoro logo

RiseBoro’s LEAP attorneys provide direct legal representation and advocacy for tenants who are at risk of eviction as a result of non-payment or holdover proceedings brought by their landlords. Their team also represents tenants in Housing Part actions, for tenants whose landlords fail to make necessary repairs to apartments in disrepair.

RiseBoro, LEAP, and LegalServer

Helping hundreds of residents each year requires a sophisticated approach to case management. LEAP is leveraging LegalServer’s customizable Prescreen and Intake processes to identify eligible clients and quickly match them with an advocate to provide appropriate legal services, which are aimed at preventing homelessness and displacement.

prescreen and intake module

RiseBoro went live with LegalServer in April 2019, and the LegalServer team looks forward to assisting the organization in its important legal work for many years to come.

Follow RiseBoro on Social Media to keep up with their community initiatives:

OneJustice Enhances Pro Bono Efforts with LegalServer

Jun 06, 2019

The LegalServer community is filled with organizations dedicated to providing equal access to justice. These agencies often view legal assistance as a basic human right, not something that’s only available to those who live in the right place, or have the financial means to afford it.

The Pro Bono Justice Project at OneJustice - which recently went live with LegalServer as its case management software solution - leverages the “time, skills, and enthusiasm of experienced legal professionals for the benefit of underserved communities, providing better access to quality legal help for those in need.” The agency’s main focus is to expand access to legal aid programs for California residents across the state, regardless of their ability to pay.

OneJustice logo

OneJustice’s Pro Bono programs deploy teams of law students and attorneys in a variety of ways, including:

  • Justice Bus Project®, which buses legal help to isolated and rural communities,
  • Bay Area Rural Justice Collaborative, which provides assistance to the San Francisco Bay Area via mobile legal clinics,
  • IMPACT LA, which supports survivors of domestic violence via legal assistance clinics, and
  • Immigration Pro Bono Network, a group of private attorneys that provide legal help to immigrants and refugees.

To help handle so many clients and initiatives across a large geographical area, OneJustice leverages LegalServer’s full suite of customizable modules. Pro Bono tools allow the organization to more accurately and efficiently track and manage the Pro Bono attorneys, law students, and law firms who dedicate their time and resources to helping those in need across California.

pro bono software module

Additionally, LegalServer’s Clinics Module gives OneJustice staff a way to quickly and easily schedule and manage client appointments, leveraging Pro Bono resources available for their clients in the best way possible.

Peter James headshot
Working with LegalServer's onboarding team greatly improved our transition to the new system. Our implementation specialist took the time to understand our pro bono program and recommended options to customize LegalServer to our needs. They were always responsive, flexible and ready to find creative solutions. As a result, we had a smooth transition to LegalServer and feel set up for success in the future.
Peter James
Senior Manager of Research & Evaluation

The LegalServer team is proud to be helping OneJustice get more of their important work done. To learn more about the organization’s goals or to volunteer your legal services in California, please visit their website.

Southern Legal Counsel Taps LegalServer for Case Management

May 08, 2019

Southern Legal Counsel (SLC) is a statewide not-for-profit public interest law firm located in Gainesville, Florida. SLC’s mission is to assist individuals and groups with public interest issues who otherwise would not have access to the justice system - and whose cases may bring about systemic reform.

Southern Legal Council logo

The organization uses a range of strategies to achieve its goals, including litigation, policy advocacy, and training and technical assistance to lawyers, lay persons, and organizations. SLC’s legal services are aimed at:

  • Ending homelessness,
  • Improving children’s services,
  • Accessing healthcare,
  • Promoting LGBTQ equality,
  • Challenging discrimination, and
  • Protecting civil rights.

To handle its growing workload, SLC recently turned to LegalServer as its case management system. Several modules were customized to the organization’s needs, staff were trained up, and SLC went live with their new implementation in March 2019.

SLC uses LegalServer to manage individual and impact cases leveraging LegalServer’s Master and Subordinate case feature to work towards systemic impact in their area. SLC will also take advantage of the Referral Hub integration in LegalServer to partner with other Florida agencies to promote meaningful access to justice for all people, regardless of their economic or social condition.

master and subordinate cases

Welcome to the LegalServer community, SLC!

Who we serve

Why LegalServer

LegalServer case management software enhances performance for non-profit legal aid agencies, university law schools, public defenders and city & county law departments. Our web-based platform improves legal case handling, provides insights to legal staff and management, and helps you make more informed decisions faster.

  • Simplify user interaction with friendly & intuitive functionality
  • Attorneys spend more time on critical thinking to help people
  • Real time graphical and easily editable reporting
  • Easily modify or enhance case management application without needing technical skills
  • Proven methodology for conversion and data migration

LegalServer staff have decades of combined experience applying technology solutions for attorneys who help society. Our encouraging and compassionate team will help you improve your processes while enabling you to configure the case management system to match the way you desire operating.

Get a Demo of LegalServer

Some of our clients

cvls logo
vlsh logo
dcbar logo
nhbar logo
denbar logo
mvlslaw logo
phillyvip logo
volsprobono logo
brooklynvlp logo
legalaidocba logo
vlbham logo
citybarjusticecenter logo

LegalServer clients are making a difference

  • Christopher M. Jones headshot
    LegalServer is easy to administer and customize in-house to meet our specific needs. We easily onboard new users without heavy investments in training.
    Christopher M. Jones
    Executive Director
  • Alice Morey headshot
    LegalServer was relatively easy to learn when we started. Our transition was pretty seamless and the staff has been very happy with LegalServer’s user friendliness and ease of adding fields to case reports when new data is required.
    Alice Morey
    Managing Attorney
  • M. Brian Miles headshot
    We’re getting great value for what we paid for LegalServer. They provided very attractive pricing that met our budgetary constraints.
    M. Brian Miles
    Managing Public Defender
  • Christy Sobolik headshot
    LegalServer's configurability allows us to track a wide variety of information needed for different funders, as well as for internal goal-setting and evaluation.
    Christy Sobolik
    Engagement Coordinator
  • Rebekah Kopec-Farrell, J.D. headshot
    The LegalServer Onboarding and Support staff is very knowledgeable, accessible, and responsive. During Onboarding they clearly understood the dynamics of what we do and worked with us to configure LegalServer in a way that meets our needs.
    Rebekah Kopec-Farrell, J.D.
    Director of Legal Services
  • Peter James headshot
    Working with LegalServer's onboarding team greatly improved our transition to the new system. They were always responsive, flexible and ready to find creative solutions. As a result, we had a smooth transition to LegalServer and feel set up for success in the future.
    Peter James
    Senior Manager of Research & Evaluation

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