Florida Attorney Russell Adler recently experienced an epiphany; one t…

Florida Attorney Russell Adler recently experienced an epiphany; one that might be a bit startling for small law firms that are used to the paper-intensive environment that surrounds
litigation. “Why not turn the law offices of Karmin, Adler & Padowitz into a
paperless, technology-advanced firm while reducing overhead expenses and
gaining efficiency?” That’s the concept he and partner Carl Karmin grappled
with for years.

“We were tired of paying exorbitant amounts of money each month to
maintain paper files including the labor and resources that went with it. We
were feeling a bit out of control in general,” says Adler. “We needed a
solution for our common problems including misfiling or lost files and not
receiving mail in a timely manner.”

Today, Adler and his colleagues are solving these issues and more with
Westbrook Technologies’ document management software. In addition to saving
about $500 per month on office supplies and labor costs, the firm is also
saving close to $1,000 per month in copying and postage costs since all
document production is now done via CD ROM.

Additionally, they are now
retrieving entire case files within 15 seconds including depositions, photos
and documents. “Same day scanning is allowing our mail and files to be
immediately available instead of having to work with incomplete, misplaced or
lost files that may take up to a day to find, if at all,” says Adler. He
explains that an attorney and a secretary are assigned to each client so file
sharing is paramount. “Now, we can search for a file by name, date scanned or
description and instantly access everything from client correspondence to

Their document management system has also extended to long-term survival
for the firm should a disaster occur. With south Florida prone to lightning
strikes and hurricanes, this was critical for Adler and his associates. “Our
ability to survive a system crash or data loss has been bolstered by our
ability to digitally back up every file in this office and restore our system
with a single back-up tape,” he says. Additionally, the effect of hard drive
crashes has been eliminated by the use of a RAID drive on their imaging

The ability to access the firm’s files with the use of CD Express — the
portable component that combines with their document management system — has
also become a powerful business tool. “Being able to transport my files with
CD Express is astounding. Even better, is my ability to connect to my office
over the Internet and view all of my mail and files from anywhere in the
world,” he says.

The overall return on the firm’s investment has Adler so thrilled that,
while president of the Broward County Trial Lawyers Association, he dedicated
the newsletter’s “President’s Message” column to sharing his excitement about
the software and its benefits stating, “This solution has satisfied my
insatiable appetite for technology.” Adler says he continually receives phone
calls from colleagues interested in discussing his document management system.

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