Probate Plus vs Case and Practice Management Systems
Why the latter aren’t the answer:
The terms ‘Case’ and ‘Practice’ Management tools are widely promoted these days. Systems are marketed as a one-size-fits-all package for every department in your firm. Some may have features or add-ons for handling probate work, but more generic systems can be blunt and inflexible.
Practice managers, who are tasked with finding software for their probate team, may lack a full understanding of what probate work involves and what the probate professional really needs. They’re naturally drawn towards buying software to ‘run the whole practice’ from just one supplier, as they think it will make their lives easier. But it probably won’t be the panacea they hoped for as, in the long run, the probate department will be left dissatisfied by a mediocre or sub-standard product and will be demanding a review and investment in something better.
Probate practitioners love using Probate Plus, over a more practice-wide system because:
1. Probate Plus is dedicated to just probate.
Estate administration is unique and unlike any other type of work in a legal or accountancy practice. It therefore needs its own dedicated software. You wouldn’t try to create a spreadsheet in PowerPoint, so make your life easier by using the right tool for your probate work.
2. Probate Plus is super flexible to deal with any scenario.
Every administration is different. With each estate, information comes at you from different angles and in an unpredictable order. Some case management systems force you to enter information in a prescribed and linear way which just leads to frustration. Probate Plus adapts to every estate, regardless of how and when you receive information.
3. Probate Plus puts the production of accounts at the centre.
A practitioner’s main goal is the production of an accurate, balanced, clear and professionally formatted set of estate accounts. A practice management system isn’t interested in the nitty-gritty of an estate’s financials. It only really cares about the money that it ever has sight of; money which might touch the client account. But it won’t concern itself with forensically monitoring or reconciling the bank accounts of the deceased, or those of third parties who may pay bills on behalf of the estate. Your own cashier won’t be interested in balancing or reconciling those external pools of cash, whilst the probate specialist will. This is where Probate Plus is the dedicated tool for the job, helping you to keep totally in control at every step.
4. Probate Plus is cost effective
You don’t want to get tied into expensive annual contracts or fixed fee systems. Some case management systems can cost a firm thousands of pounds a year. With Probate Plus, you buy it on a pay-as-you-go basis. So if you’re just starting out in probate work and don’t know how many cases you might be taking on, there’s no financial commitment for you to worry about. Even firms with regular workloads appreciate the flexibility and many firms pass the cost of using Probate Plus directly on to their clients as a disbursement.
5. Probate Plus provides excellent support
As our system is sold on a pay-as-you-go basis, it’s in our interest to provide excellent support and training. From the initial setup we make sure that you are confident using the system and aim to respond to any support questions within an hour during the working day. Larger, more cumbersome firm-wide systems often struggle to provide such a quality of response and when you’re desperate to get on with your work this can prove extremely frustrating.
No single practice or case management system, which isn’t dedicated to the job of probate, will ever be well received by practitioners working at the coalface. So, it’s important that the right approach is taken when deciding on new software for a probate department.
This piece is based on a more in-depth article we wrote in February 2018 for the LawSkills website. Click here to read in full.
We’d be delighted to highlight the main features of Probate Plus to you.