The key to a successful lawyer-client relationship is trust, which needs transparency and consistency. Client intake software makes everyone’s lives easier by making both details a breeze.
With the aid of communication and law firm marketing automation tools, your days of exhausting administration are over. Client intake software lets you record accurately, streamlines your workflow, and automates tasks. When 65% of law firms state intake software helps them close more clients, everyone within your firm will feel the difference.
Instead of relying on archaic spreadsheets or incompatible software, check out our guide on the best client intake software for law firms.
If you’re in a bit of a hurry, we have a useful chart below with our top picks:
The Key Differences Between Common Legal Software
There are a ton of different software tools lawyers could use. The hard part is figuring out which ones your firm should use.
Instead of viewing software as superior or inferior, it’s better to view them as better or worse for your needs. We’ll break down the differences between common legal software to ensure you find the right fit.
Client Intake Software vs. CRMs
Client intake software and customer relationship management software (CRM) both help lawyers keep up with clients. The difference is in the level of industry specialization.
Legal intake tools focus only on lawyers, while CRMs can work for almost any business.
Lawyers can use legal intake software to make onboarding new clients easier. They manage things like gathering client information, signing documents, and scheduling consultations. Setting up client intake forms saves time compared to manual data entry from phone calls or in-person appointments.
These tools make getting new client information into your other tools easier. It's a simple way to push intake data into case management or practice management systems.
Legal professionals can use CRMs to interact with people who are not yet clients or won't become clients.
You can use this tool as a central place for all case leads from your website. These are the people who aren't ready to hire you and move into the intake process yet. CRMs help you know which leads to follow up with to get new cases.
Some CRMs for lawyers offer intake functionality and integrate with other legal tools. These tools allow you to onboard prospective clients who are ready to hire you.
Client Intake Software vs. Case Management Software
Client intake and case management software have more significant differences.
Client intake software helps you gather all the data to take someone from lead to new client. Case management tools help you manage that client's case after they've finished onboarding.
Case management software is useful for preparing cases. It helps you keep up with the involved parties. These tools help organize each case with things like billing and legal document management.
As with CRMs, some case management tools may have built-in intake functions.
Now that the differences are clear let's take a look at the top 5 intake platforms.
If you specialize in personal injury, CloudLex could be your law firm’s new favorite tool. This software has all the hallmarks of a solid client intake program with extra specialization.
The cloud-based design means you’ll be able to update, store, and transfer information easily. Its settlement calculator reduces number-crunching by tracking offers, payments, and injuries. If you’re on the go, there is a supplemental app version of the tool for mobile devices.
If you try CloudLex, you’ll be able to enjoy features such as:
- Trending reports and dashboards
- Contact management
- Settlement calculator
- Advanced search options
- Mobile-friendly app
Since CloudLex comes with add-ons, your price will vary based on the features you choose. There’s no subscription model, either, but you can contact them for a demo.
Does your firm already rely on a CRM? Now might be a good time to try out Lawmatics, a cloud-based CRM that nurtures your relationship with potential clients.
What makes this software a showstopper is its flexibility. You can automatically adjust your program based on practice size, type, and role. When it comes to general features, Lawmatics easily automates your everyday tasks. You'll save more time than you thought possible billing or checking in on your clients.
You’ll also be able to automate marketing with its analytics feature.
Get Lawmatics if you want to use features such as:
- Flexible solutions based on practice size, area, and role
- Marketing automation
- Time and billing
- Reporting and insights
Lawmatics offers a Lite version at $199/mo and a Pro version at $249/mo. Contact them for a quote on their Enterprise version. A Time & Billing feature is available for an extra $29/mo per user.
Captorra hits the gray area between client intake software and case management software. If you’re eager to use the fewest amounts of programs possible, this software is a great fit.
Get time back with Captorra’s automated features, such as automatic text and email follow-up. Save even more time by setting up alerts to follow up with clients or using the automated report to track your business metrics. Built-in timekeeping means lawyers don't need a separate time tracking app. You’ll be able to stay one step ahead with the referral management tool, too. This feature will help you figure out which partnerships are benefiting your firm.
Captorra offers an impressive range of features, such as:
- Contact management
- Referral management
- Automated business analytics
- Real-time tracking
- Case management features
Captorra has a varied price model depending on the add-ons you want. Contact them for a free demo to see which version works best for you.
Clio is another client intake software that hovers between multiple types. If you want client intake software with sprinkles of case and project management features, this tool is a good fit.
Case management, document management, and project management are all bundled together in this program. You can use their insights dashboard to see how this software benefits your business. Meanwhile, your clients will enjoy a client portal and easy online payment features.
Clio is a great match for firms who want features such as:
- Client intake, project management, and customer management
- Client portal
- Online payment
- Insights dashboard
Clio offers an EasyStart plan at $49/mo and an Essentials plan at $79/mo. There’s also an Advanced plan at $119/mo and a complete plan at $149/mo. Annual plans get a discount, and you can sign up for a free 7-day trial before committing.
Are you determined to create a more holistic structure in your law firm? The creators of Interaction designed their software to keep everyone closely connected.
Interaction’s passive data capture feature ensures you can spend more time talking than typing. The program integrates with popular platforms to enter client information from your workflow. Interactive charts and graphs help you and your employees understand how your firm operates.
Choose Interaction if you want to enjoy features such as:
- Holistic model that improves employee collaboration and client relationships
- Passive data capture
- Interactive charts and graphs
- Cloud-based solutions
- App integration with popular platforms such as Outlook, Excel, and Word
This software doesn’t come with standard monthly or annual subscriptions. Interaction has you fill out a form, then will contact you with a unique subscription model. You can also ask them for a free demo.
Client intake software may help lawyers speed up their client intake process. It could help reduce human errors and improve client experiences. But it's only one of many software options for lawyers to choose from.
Some CRMs, case management tools, and other tools for lawyers come with intake functionality out of the box. If you already use one of these tools, you may not need a redundant intake solution.
If your law firm team struggles with intake and your current tools can't help, this software may be right for you.