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Final article in a series about Technology & Emergency Management law practice published by Michael J. Riley, Sr.

Michael J. Riley, Sr. Attorney in Louisiana

Michael J. Riley, Sr. Attorney in Louisiana

Michael J. Riley, Sr., at work in Haiti

Michael J. Riley, Sr., at work in Haiti

Michael J. Riley, Sr., at work in Haiti with Dr Laborde

Michael J. Riley, Sr., at work in Haiti with Dr Laborde

Blog of Michael J Riley Sr., Louisiana

Blog of Michael J Riley Sr., Louisiana

Profile of Michael J Riley, Sr

Profile of Michael J Riley, Sr

As technology is advancing, the legal profession must keep up with these technological and societal changes, explains Michael J. Riley, Sr. in article series.

Office of Michael Jerome Riley, Sr. (N/A:N/A)

Long gone are the days of paper routing slips, desktop inboxes and consecutive reviews by paralegals and attorneys during which papers and files are shuffled back and forth.”
— Michael Jerome Riley, Sr., Attorney, New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, UNITED STATES, November 10, 2018 / -- In this final article in a series, emergency responder and attorney Michael J. Riley, Sr. discusses the advancements and impact of technology upon the emergency management law practice, and how it is being utilized to enhance the client experience in terms of satisfaction and customer service. The complete articles will be published on the blog of Michael Riley at

Emergency management covers a broad range of issues that can be better managed with software and other technologies. This field is surprisingly broad. A lawyer in this area will encounter issues as diverse as Grant Management and Administration, Public Assistance Program, Environmental and Historic Preservation Requirements, Hazardous Materials, and Project Funding. Incorporating technology into a law practice in this area can make the practice more efficient and increase client satisfaction. In fact, technology may enable the practitioner to exceed client expectations.

Incorporating technology into a law practice can make the practice more efficient and increase client satisfaction. In fact, technology may enable the practitioner to exceed client expectations. Here are a few, simple-to-implement options, applicable to emergency management law practice but also any other law practice:

Payment Services-Electronic Invoices

Payment by check is gradually becoming a thing of the past. Credit Card Payments are now commonplace, and even other forms of payment such as ACH, wire transfers, and Paypal are becoming more commonplace. While there are costs associated with taking credit card payments or Paypal, the ease of use and the increased speed of getting paid are often worth the fees. Many merchant account vendors now provide a Web portal to facilitate online payments. Google and Square ( as well as Legal Software Systems ( provide technology to accept payments via smartphone. There are ethics opinions regarding Attorneys accepting credit cards for payments, thus one should consult the local ethics rules.

Confidentiality Protections

Maintaining the confidentiality of client information is an ethical foundation of the profession. Encryption tools may add extra security to electronic communications. Document efforts to keep their clients’ information safe and secure.

Signing Documents Electronically

Services like DocuSign (, RightSignature ( and e-Sign Live ( can save time and effort in cases where no wet signature is required and an electronic signature is sufficient.

On-line Calendaring and Scheduling

Scheduling meetings can be an enormous drag upon staff time and efficiency. This may cause delays and confusion, especially when the client or lawyer must re-schedule a previously scheduled meeting.

There are several options for simplifying scheduling. One of them is TimeTap ( For example, potential clients can instantly schedule an appointment online. It also removes impediments from new clients to make contact with one’s Firm.

Online scheduling and appointment booking products such as TimeTap synchronize with your Outlook or Google calendar and display your free and busy times to your clients and prospects.

Then, by simply clicking on a button from your Web site or using a secure portal, they can select one of your free times and can directly set up an appointment. Time Tap offers the ability to send out automated appointment reminders, and lets one reschedule and automatically send the rescheduling information. This added efficiency and flexibility means fewer demands on their overcrowded schedules. These services will contribute to improved quality, convenience and affordability.

Example of Technology Suite for a Small Law Firm

In case you wonder what technologies other law firms have, here is an actual real life example. This small law firm uses the following technologies:

• CosmoLex (online and App) – Law Practice Management Software
• LawPay (online and App) – Payment software for billing/invoicing.
• Google Suite (online and App) – Document creation/management.
• Dropbox (online and App) – Transfer/management of large files.
• Westlaw – Legal Research.
• Skype – Phones & video conferencing.
• Facetime – Client communications.

And since many law firms are gradually going “paperless,” a system for scanning documents and managing electronic files becomes indispensable.


Harnessing technology can greatly increase client satisfaction, save time and effort, and reduce the stress of practicing law in this fast-moving world. Undoubtedly, technology will continue to change the ways that legal teams serve their clients. My personal advice is to take it step-by-step: evaluate where is the greatest need in your office. Cooperating on documents? Scheduling appointments with clients? Making payments easier for clients? Then develop a strategy for best addressing those needs by implementing one of the numerous technological options and integrating it into the workflow of the office.

*NOTE: The inclusion of a technology or app in this article does not mean an endorsement or approval. The listed technologies are just for illustrative purposes. None of these particular technologies are endorsed or recommended by this author.

The complete article will be published on the blog of Michael Riley, Sr. at

Disclosure & Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the author. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of FEMA or any government agency.

About Michael Jerome Riley, Sr.

Trained as a lawyer, J.D., University of Tennessee-Knoxville (1980), Michael J. Riley, Sr. currently serves FEMA as an Emergency Manager, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Operations Division Supervisor. Expertise includes Small and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises, contract compliance, procurement, and Civil Rights. He has served the American people and international community in various different locations affected by natural disasters, including Puerto Rico and Haiti.


Michael Jerome Riley, Sr.
Office of Michael Jerome Riley, Sr.
+1 504-644-2011
email us here

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