Meaning of Litigation Support Services
Litigation Support Services as the name indicates provides support services in matters of litigation. With the emerging litigation explosion in the global scenario, the concept of ‘litigation support service’ recognized worldwide acceptance. These types of services are provided by ‘legal support specialists’. Their work of assisting the attorneys in a particular case starts from client interviewing and ends after the execution of the judgment.
Duty of a Litigation Support Service Provider
The duty of a litigation support specialist is not only confined to the professional work of the advocates but also the assisting and secretarial work of paralegals. A plethora of duties have been assigned to the legal support specialists ranging from
Client counseling : Client Counseling is the foremost step in a litigation process. The litigation support specialists interviews the client and can hear the issue. The client may give material and immaterial facts. The specialist carefully analyses it and will find out the relevant materials regarding the case to the attorney. This saves a lot of time for the attorney. Later when the attorney interviews the client he will also have a clear understanding about the case.
Collection and Analysis of evidence and records : In a case there involves a pile of records and evidences. The specialist collects the evidence, analyses it and presents according to their importance and the time of presentation. However this will always be subject to the scrutiny of the attorney.
Document Review : Document Review in most firms is done by the paralegals but this can be more effectively and accurately be done by a person with a legal background. Usually the documents reviewed by the paralegals go through the hands of the support specialists before it reaches the scrutiny of the attorneys.
Transcription work : The transcription works are also subject to the scrutiny of the legal support specialists or sometimes they themselves doe the transcription.
Case law search (both national and foreign law) : Finding similar case laws for the case at hand is the time consuming process in litigation. One have to read the judgments, analyze the similarities and differences and have to find out how the precedent can be applied to the instant case. Especially for having the foreign judgments the legal support specialist should have thorough knowledge about the databases.
Drafting : The legal support Service also includes the drafting of the various agreements. The attorney will be dealing with the complicated cases and he need not be disturbed for drafting simple agreements. But this will surely be corrected by the senior attorney before it goes to the hands of the client.
Technical Assistance : This kind of services often provide technical assistance in case of e-filing of any application. He should also be thorough with the litigation support software.
Qualities of Litigation Support Specialist
The Litigation Support Specialist who does the services should have excellent communication skills, patience, good reasoning capacity, perseverance, up-to-date knowledge in the legal matters, good drafting skills, knowledge about legal databases, creativity, leadership, team management, should have the capability to win the confidence of the clients.
The Legal Support Services provides the young lawyers a sound platform to widen their practical knowledge. There are good chances of communication with the clients. Training about the use of software systems, databases, document review will all be an added advantage of molding oneself into a proficient attorney.