Every lawyer or law firm, no matter how small or how limited the practice area, must have a conflicts database and a procedure to check and log a conflict review. Firms without a reliable attorney/client conflict check system ignore a systematic risk in their operation.
There is no question that a law firm conflict of interest system must adequately detect, identify and address any potential conflict. While the basics of an attorney-client conflict checking system might appear simple, in practice it is fairly challenging to develop a “bulletproof” system. A system that properly functions must be up to date at all times, easy for the firm to use at the time of case intake, and readily identify potential conflicts of interest.
If you are entertaining the idea of checking conflicts with a manual system or relying on your memory or just doing a search against your entire address book — think again! We are way beyond the days where it’s okay to have a manual conflict checking system. Every practicing lawyer should have a computerized attorney/client conflict check tool for identifying conflicts arising from clients and transactions.
Step 1: Maintain your comprehensive, master contact database within CosmoLex itself. (“Maintain” means “keep it current”!)
Step 2: For current and past clients, specify key relationships (e.g. link clients with other contact names and specify relationships such as spouse, adversary, adversary’s counsel, key witness, etc.) in their contact record.
Step 3: Before taking on a new client, run a conflict search. Save a copy of the search report in the case file.
“Three software packages was too much! With CosmoLex, everything was in one place.”
Lynda Weeden / Sheftall & Associates, P.A. / Florida / June 2017
“The customer support at CosmoLex is superb - someone always responds to an inquiry promptly."
Kenneth Baum / Law Offices of Kenneth L. Baum / New Jersey / June 2017
"I looked at a variety of programs when I opened my own practice and CosmoLex seemed to be the most user friendly.”
William D. Lowe / Law Office of W. Douglas Lowe / N. Carolina / June 2017