Trust, Ethics and You
Most attorneys understand that when it comes to ethics, perception is reality. An honest attorney can still get in trouble if it even appears that something questionable has happened. When it comes to ethics, attorneys can be presumed guilty until proven innocent. This is true in all aspects of legal practice but especially when it comes to trust accounts.
The number one protection against ethics charges is comprehensive and accurate information. This used to mean rooms full of file cabinets documenting every financial transaction. Modern attorneys track this information with legal billing and accounting software with trust account capabilities such as Easy TimeBill and Easy Trust.
Dedicated lawyer trust account software simplifies the process of entering, tracking and retrieving transaction information regarding trusts. Attorneys use the software to keep each matter in a mingled account separate, so that “on paper” each is treated as an isolated account. The software generates comprehensive transaction reports that make it easy to track every penny that has come in or out of a trust.
Attorney time and billing software has evolved as computer technology has advanced. As we move into an increasingly paperless society, many of the receipts and statements a firm receives are electronic. The software can link to the electronic copy so a user can pull up the original document rather than depending only on the numbers entered in the software.
The latest innovation in attorney practice management software is the cloud. A firm’s trust information is stored in offsite servers that are both highly secure against intrusion and yet easily accessible to authorized users. Attorneys can access or enter information from anywhere. This allows lawyers to enter a transaction the moment it happens rather than stuff a receipt into a pocket, hoping to remember it later.
Your word may be good, but it won’t be good enough if you end up under an ethics investigation. Without hard data backing up your claim you could be subject to financial penalties or even disbarment over a simple misunderstanding. Contact Easy Soft to find out more about how our accounting and trust software protects your practice from ethics charges.