Takeaways from the 2019 Annual Florida Bar Convention
Despite its massive membership roster, The Florida Bar is one of the most tightly knit and welcoming legal groups in the country. UniCourt was fortunate to attend the 2019 annual Bar Convention in Boca Raton and experience this friendly, collegial culture for ourselves.
This year, The Florida Bar is looking forward to the new leadership of President John Stewart, a third-generation Florida lawyer, litigator, and self-proclaimed legal tech enthusiast. In his inaugural speech, Stewart noted that “the legal profession is facing powerful forces of change and the Bar cannot simply be an immovable object.” He went on to share his goals for the next year, stating: “The question of how to navigate these changes is at the forefront of my mind and will be the focus of the upcoming year.” We hope that President Stewart will continue to champion the values of transparency and accountability that have made the Florida court system one of the best in the U.S.
Aside from being one of the most technologically savvy and forward-thinking bars, Florida engages its members with a robust social media presence. You can grab some recaps from the Convention and stay up to date on exciting new developments in The Florida Bar by following along on Twitter or by plugging in the hashtag #MyFloridaBar. Here are a few of our favorite snapshots from the Convention:
Sharing our Platform
In addition to meeting some of the key players, we were excited to learn how Florida attorneys are using court data in their practices. We also had an opportunity to share how Florida attorneys can make the most of UniCourt.
As an exhibitor at the Convention, we found that what resonated most with attorneys was that UniCourt provides one portal to access state and federal court records. For attorneys who practice in multiple counties across Florida and/or handle state and federal litigation, being able to search one location for all of their cases, rather than wading through several county court portals on top of PACER, makes a substantial difference in the time and resources required to manage their caseload.
Attorneys and firms were also intrigued by the prospect of tracking litigation trends – noting the changes in case volumes in particular jurisdictions to follow the market – and the use of legal analytics to track down parties, opposing counsel, and even themselves and their law school classmates! In fact, one of the exhibitors for Lawnch, Inc., Kris Cruzada, pulled his own attorney analytics and was pleasantly surprised to see the number of cases he’d handled over the years.
Beyond increasing firm productivity and obtaining insights from analytics, attorneys were also interested in learning how UniCourt can be used for business development. More specifically, they were interested in how our automated searches could be used to find new clients and keep tabs on their most important clients. During the Convention, we spoke to several employment defense firms who approached us and were able to instantly understand the power of using automated searches to scour court databases on a daily basis. Being the first to know when their top clients have been sued by employees – even before an employer’s been served – is an incredibly valuable insight for business development efforts and for better protecting their clients interests.
The Convention made it clear to us that legal tech is not just a niche area, and that the legal tech community is alive and thriving. It’s a burgeoning industry representing a confluence of talent from different industries and sectors. As exhibitors, we were thrilled to meet with some of the best in the business, from the Legal Talk Network, to Ross Intelligence, Rocket Matter, LawClerk, and Time Miner.
We’re excited for the 2020 Annual Florida Bar Convention in Orlando, and all that is to come in the year between now and then. In the meantime, we’re eager to watch how Florida attorneys will continue to use UniCourt to make the most of court data, and we look forward to sharing what we learn at next year’s Convention.
If you’re interested in learning more about how UniCourt can help attorneys enhance their practices, we welcome you to contact us.