Like most young professionals, I am always looking to technology to make my work life quicker, easier, and more productive. Below is a shortlist of technology for family law practice.
By Kumudha N. Kumarachandran, Family Lawyer
The bulk of evidence I end up providing in discovery comes from text messages between the parties. With the screenshots from iPhones that I used to get from clients, it was very difficult to identify exactly what number a text came from, and even more difficult to figure out the exact date and time at which each text was sent. iBackup Viewer allows me or my clients to back up their iPhones through iTunes and then view all of the backed up material. You can then go through all of the text messages sent and received on the iPhone and put them into a PDF. Each individual message has a stamp of the number that the text came from and the exact date and time of the text. This program is for iPhones only. The difficult aspect of the program is that you either backup your client’s entire phone to your computer, or you have to get your client to download the iBackup Viewer software to get the documentation you need.
You can find this software at: www.imactools.com/iphonebackupviewer
Technology for Family Law Practice: Our Family Wizard
Our Family Wizard (OFW) has been a great tool for my clients involved in high-conflict marital relationships. OFW is a communication application and website that gives the contentious parents a one-stop shop for all communications with each other regarding child custody related issues. Messages exchanged on OFW are easy to track and have the optional feature of a tonemeter, which functions as a spell check for emotionally charged messages. In addition to the message board, there is a calendar, a journal, an expense tracker, an information log for the exchange of legal custody documents, and a thorough history of each party’s logins and views. OFW makes it easy for the parties to put in requests to swap custody time, request reimbursement from one another, and log events as they happen through the journal, which can be shared or private. The parties bear the costs of their OFW subscription, and then invite their attorneys for viewing. Attorneys can easily view all of the data, and can quickly print out all OFW documents and records. OFW allows attorneys a very effective means of policing, and proving, the communications between parents who are unable and unwilling to communicate effectively with each other without supervision.
To find out more, go to: www.ourfamilywizard.com
Custody X Change
I have found both the Custody X Change software and Custody X Change website to be extremely helpful in my practice. The Custody X Change software allows you to create custody schedules and calendars for your clients. You can uniquely tailor schedules to show a client or a Judge exactly how a contemplated custody schedule would actually look on a calendar. It is very useful to clients to be able to have printouts of their color-coded schedule for their own reference. In a jurisdiction where the amount of overnights determines whether custody is sole or shared, this software is very useful because it allows easy calculation of overnights. The Custody X Change website also provides a wealth of information about custody schedules generally. The website gives you sample custody schedules based on percentage of parenting time, and even suggests different schedules for children of different ages.
You can explore the website and download the software at: www.custodyxchange.com.
Kumudha N. Kumarachandran is a litigation attorney with Cordell & Cordell, an international domestic litigation firm focused on men’s divorce and all other family law practice areas. www.cordellcordell.com
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