Litera has joined the ranks of technology providers to offer their collaboration software for free to help law firms overcome the extensive challenges presented by COVID-19. Certain key parts of Litera Transact (formerly Doxly) will be available at no cost for six months. In particular, the bits of Litera Transact that enable lawyers to avoid coming into contact with others, specifically its checklist, eSignature, and closing room functionality.

Speaking to Legal IT Insider, Litera’s CEO Avaneesh Marwaha said: “The reason why we’re doing the transaction management program is to help law firms to handle this pandemic. You shouldn’t be seeing other people but as soon as a courier comes to your house, or you have to go to the post office, you’re breaking that safe quarantine and all because people desire a wet signature or for every piece of paper to be signed. Those things are not necessary for today’s transactions. We’re sitting on a piece of software that can help and give firms and their clients the opportunity to carry on working without so much human interaction.”

Litera acquired Litera Transact in the UK and Doxly in the US and the combined product now takes the former’s name but is built on the latter’s platform.

Is it practical for firms to roll out this kind of technology now? “We’re 100% SaaS,” says Marwaha. “As soon as someone is interested they reach out, we set them up quick, send an email and a 30-second video with five steps and they can get up and running. If they have issues we have 24/7 support. It’s a very easy thing to get up and running and support.”

He adds: “I do want to make it clear that we’re doing this to really help in a time of need and we think we can do it with this technology. If the end result is positive for business we’re not going into it for that. We can impact social good and this is an opportunity to do that.” To find out more go to: https://info.litera.com/litera-transact-business-continuity

Vendors such as Microsoft Teams are making their products free and the fact that lawyers have been forced to work at home has seen a massive spike in the use of online collaboration tools.

The COVID-19 break is also expected to be the catalyst that drives the legal sector into the cloud and Marwaha observes: “The legal industry went through a crash in 2008 and got more streamlined in terms of their overheads and operations so most firms should be able to weather the storm but we think the end result now will be much more cloud friendly. There have been firms that have struggled to go remote and their back office is still in the office. My hope is that this brings about acceptance of technology that will help people do their jobs more easily and a wake up call to our customers’ clients to open the door to a cloud strategy for our customers.”