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Bar experiments with I.T. helpline for solos and small firms

Senior Editor Top Stories
Jay Kim

Jay Kim

The Bar is about to launch a three-month experiment to see if mostly solo and small firm lawyers could benefit from a non-emergency IT helpline.

At a March 5 Board of Governors meeting, Board Technology Committee Chair Jay Kim said a “beta test” by Bar consultant Law Tech Partners is scheduled for March 15.

The service, which could eventually be added to the Bar’s Member Benefits program, will be promoted to solo and small-firm lawyers who typically can’t afford a full-time IT department or manager.

At a January 29 meeting, the Board of Governors approved a contract for the experiment, mostly to gauge need.

At a January 28 Program Evaluation Committee meeting, Kim said his committee initially envisioned an emergency IT hotline, but scaled the proposal back after determining that it would be cost-prohibitive.

Instead, Kim said, the helpline will offer routine remote services, including basic troubleshooting, operating system support, and technical setup for home and remote offices.

“I think the important thing…is that it is not intended to be an emergency line,” Kim said. “What will not be included are hardware issues and malware and ransomware attacks and things like that.”

Law Tech Partners owner Adriana Linares, a legal technology consultant and trainer, offers a similar service as a member benefit to the San Diego County Bar Association.

PEC backup material included a handful of glowing testimonials about the service from SCBA members.

Under the beta test, Law Tech will be required to provide the Bar with data that will help determine need, as well as the types of service requested, and how successfully problems were resolved.

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