You can now add a default filter for Matters, Tasks, Events, Calendars and Todos for your GoMatters profile. Default filter options are “All” and “Mine”. “All” shows you, well… all items in the system including co-workers and “Mine”… you guessed it – only yours!

Setting the default filter is a great way to thin out the Matters list or the initial load of Calendars for our users that have several office users on the system. You can further customize the item filters on a per user basis from each list by clicking the user icon and selecting the users you need.

To set default filters for your profile from your Profile page, click the Settings tab, click the Edit button and choose your settings, then click the Save Changes button to save the changes to your profile. The changes will take effect on the next page refresh.

Default filters are available for:

Default calendar display
Default matters assigned display
Matter tasks
Default matter tasks assigned display
Matter events
Default matter events assigned display
Default todos assigned display

We’ve added a new field called “Note” to GoMatters calendar events. The new field maps to the “Note” field in Apple calendar products like iCal and iOS calendars and maps to the “Description” field in Google Calendars and other CalDAV clients.

The calendar event note field is great for adding a short bit of supplemental information to calendar events like phone numbers for appointments or topics that need to be covered during a particular meeting. The calendar event note field is great to use for appointment scheduling to add a call back or reminder phone number. The note field syncs with all CalDAV clients like iPhone so if you stick a phone number in the note field you can one click dial the number from your iPhone calendar.

The calendar event note field is probably not where you want to store really long notes about an event, like complete meeting notes. Although you could store them in the event note field, there’s an entire “Notes” section for each Matter that can be used for storing more extensive notes.

A good calendar is the backbone of any law office. A calendar app for lawyers should be able to support not just one individual lawyer, but every member of the lawyer’s staff from secretaries to paralegals to private investigators if need be. A good calendar app for lawyers should also move and adapt to each lawyer’s office management style. The calendar app needs to push events to multiple devices and maintain all of those users, events and devices without syncing. Too much to ask for, right?

Not at all. A great calendar app for lawyers that could be used on both iOS, Android and desktop systems was one of the driving forces behind the development of GoMatters and we lead the way as the premier cloud based calendar app designed by lawyers, specifically for lawyers.

CalDAV is a calendar protocol supported by iCal, iPhone, iPad and other iOS devices and allows you to manipulated your office calendars in the native calendaring applications for those devices. CalDAV support is one of the things that makes GoMatters the best calendar app for lawyers. GoMatters calendars can also be accessed through Android devices supporting CalDAV using one of the many CalDAV apps available on Google Play like Smooth Sync for Cloud Calendar.

You can view and edit your GoMatters calendar on any device that supports CalDAV. You don’t need to be logged into the GoMatters application to view your calendars that are being pulled by supported devices so the calendar can be used offline. Once you’re back online, your calendar will update with your main GoMatters calendar.

GoMatters also supports internet calendar subscription for clients who cannot access a calendar through a CalDAV enabled device. Internet subscription calendars allow a subscriber to view calendar events, but internet subscription calendars are read-only and events cannot be added or edited.

Accessing your GoMatters calendar in your favorite device’s native application makes it easy to get updates to your calendar while on the move. The next time your at court and need to know your available dates for the next trial date in a matter, just pull out your iPhone, open the calendar app and scan your entire office calendar in a second. The calendar is perfectly in sync with your main office calendar! All events added back at your office by your secretaries automatically update across all phone or tablet devices associated with your GoMatters account. Once you have that new trial date, add it on your phone and it shows up on the main calendar back at the office. Managing your law office calendar in the cloud will help you and staff keep everything in sync with less effort.

Learn more about How to sync calendars with CalDAV

“Paperless” or “Less paper”? Which is more realistic? Let’s face it, it’s going to take a lot of time and effort to get your entire law practice to be truly “paperless”. But using less paper can make things run better, save time, costs and certainly the favorite of any small office law practice… file cabinet space!

Taking a few simple steps to reduce your paper output will go a long way. Storing your documents in GoMatters is an obvious first step, but once the document has been stored in the cloud, what else can be done to cut down on the paper associated with that document.

Think “copying”. As lawyers, we can do some copying. Some lawyers make more money off their copier than they do on total hourly fees. But copies generate paper which takes up space… and on and on and on.

One technique is to stop the copying right away. Once a document is scanned, don’t copy it, toss it all over the place in electronic format via email but try not to copy it again. Obviously that will help, but how about not even storing that document in the physical file folder to begin with? One place this technique works great is with general correspondence that must be forwarded to clients. The usual practice is to make a copy of the original and send the copy to the client and store the original in the file.

If you can, try to scan the original document, store that in your GoMatters account and send the original to the client with your traditional cover letter making only a copy of the cover letter for the physical file and print the document reference as listed in your GoMatters account on a single sheet of paper and attach the document reference sheet to the cover letter for the physical file. Anyone back tracking through the physical file will see the correspondence with your GoMatters document reference sheet attached indicating the attachment sent with the original letter is stored in your firm’s GoMatters account and can be found there.

Even in a small office, this technique can save reams of paper. If you send 10 general correspondence letters daily (a very small amount indeed) with attachments that average 10 pages in size, that’s 110 pieces of paper for daily correspondence (10 letters plus 10 attachments at 10 sheets). Using this simple paper reduction technique will cut that 110 sheets of paper to 20! Multiply your savings out over the course of the week and you’ve already saved 1 ream of paper with this ridiculously simple paper saver. Think about the physical file space you’ll save in a week, month or year if you’re office is eliminating at least 90 sheets of paper daily.

To print a document reference sheet for documents stored in your GoMatters account, select the document to reference from the document list using the checkbox for the selected document row and then click the Print button from the document list to print your reference.

GoMatters is excited to announce that our case management system is now free for law school students! More info on the free case management software for law school students program can found here.

Law school students using case management software are more prepared upon graduation to enter the real world practice of law. GoMatters case and practice management software can help new lawyers learn to increase efficiency and boost law office profits. GoMatters online case management software helps law firms streamline administrative back office and front office operations by combining calendaring and docketing, legal billing, contact management and document storage under one roof.

Legal case management system instruction is becoming more popular in law schools as law schools realize the importance of case management systems in the real world practice of law. The complexities of the law practice business model make efficiency an important part of success for any graduating law school student.

GoMatters online cloud based case management system for lawyers allows lawyers to manage their law practices from anywhere. Today’s law school student has grown up online and expects a forward thinking cloud application like GoMatters to be able to manage their burgeoning law practice. Law students are able to maintain a free account while they are in law school and when they’re ready to hang their shingle, their new law office will already have a solid beginning in the cloud.

A good bit of our small office subscriptions start when a lawyer says to a paralegal, “Find an online case management system, now!”. We’ve also noticed that 90% of our online case management system use for small law offices comes from the office staff of paralegals and legal secretaries.

So what can a good legal case management system do for paralegals? After all, the paralegals will probably be using the system the most.

First and foremost, an online legal case management system needs to manage contacts effectively. At the end of the day, it’s all about how much time you saved doing something less important than the tasks the important, money generating tasks. Our contact email integration saves time with pre-formatted emails for easy email search. Our click and write email system for contacts for every matter lets paralegals speed up case emailing by having all contact information within one click at all times.

An online legal case management system needs to be accessible on devices other than a desktop or laptop. GoMatters allows paralegals to view calendars and contacts on your iPhone or iPad so you can take the office management tasks with you.

Billing for paralegals is where the small law office really makes the money. Paralegals need an easy way to track time. Our task based billing system is the most intuitive legal billing system available in the cloud today.

Excellent document management is another major time saver for paralegals. With our document management system, any document can be opened in your browser with one click instead of walking to the file to search for the file.

Every paralegal knows the most difficult part of managing a small law office is keeping track of calendar dates for the lawyers in the office. GoMatters integrates directly with your existing calendar applications like iCal, iPhone and iPad to make keeping the lawyers in your office on time and in the right place easier than ever before.

We are happy to announce an upgrade to our contact management interface. We have added several new fields to more closely integrate with iPhone contact fields and Address Book contact fields.

We now support multi-value contact fields for phone numbers, email addresses, addresses, URL’s, instant messaging addresses and dates. For example, you can store as many home email addresses for a contact as you like, or you can store as many work addresses for a contact as you like.

In addition to the improvement for multi-value contact fields, GoMatters now also supports custom labels for contact phone numbers, emails, addresses, URL’s, instant messaging and dates.

We have also added the ability to store contact notes.

All GoMatters fields map to iPhone and Address Book contact fields. When exporting from GoMatters in vCard format for import to iPhone or Address Book, all fields will carry over including contact photos and notes.

All upgrades to our contact management system are backwards compatible so you don’t need to do anything to let the changes take effect for your old contacts.


You just can’t take all those windows machines at your firm anymore… you’re done. You’re swearing off “Ctrl Alt Delete” for the rest of your professional legal career. You’ve decided to hang your shingle and you’re going to take your Mac with you. We feel your pain. In fact, that same feeling of disgust is what drove us to develop GoMatters in the first place.

So you’re going solo with a Mac, what now? Don’t worry too much, finding law practice management software for Mac is probably easier than putting in your notice at your current firm.

First things first, are you a Mac purist? We ask this question because you should start your Mac law office software quest off on the right foot and that does not mean jumping for the nearest copy of Boot Camp to install Windows on your Mac. If you’re a purist, you’ll hold out as long as you can and try to find as many alternatives as you can. Some law practice software specific to certain practice areas is only available for Windows so you many have no other option than to either install Windows on your Mac or maybe even pick up a cheap PC to run the practice specific software and use your Mac for everything else.

90% of your practice is likely to be word processing and you’d be hard pressed to find a better word processing program than Open Office. Good news is that it runs wonderfully on your Mac and the great news is that it’s free! Open Office is even a bit more flexible than Word when it comes to things like PDF’s and saving files in open formats.

After word processing, you’re going to need a Mac case management and billing system for your law office. GoMatters can help you with both the front office scheduling and back office billing and management to make your transition to solo practitioner as easy and as painless as possible. Emailing clients and viewing documents online with GoMatters can you save you the time, paper, postage and personnel overhead associated with traditional law practices.

We receive a great deal of signups from users who are starting their own firms and are looking for advice on setting up a logical file structure for their law office. On the other end of the spectrum, we have users who have been practicing for years and face the challenge of converting an existing case management system or law practice management style. One of our subscribers recently asked our advice on setting up new matters and applying some of the GoMatters file structure logic to his existing cases which numbered in the thousands. Applying any new system to thousands of old cases might not be the easiest thing to do, but if you follow these case management file structure tips, setting up a new case or converting an old case should go a lot easier.

Matter Number

First things first, you need to think optimistically. Let’s hope you have a ton of clients in your new law practice that will come back to you year after year. Let’s also hope your practice last for years and years, or as they said back in law school “ad infinitum”.

Thinking optimistically then leads you to thinking chronologically. Marking the start date of any matter is the most logical way to approach any law office management file structure. If you think about it, this is the way courts have been managing case loads far greater than yours for for much longer than you’ve been practicing law.

When you open a new matter in GoMatters, a chronological number is assigned to the matter that represents the point in time the matter was created. The automatic matter number created by GoMatters is in the format Year-Month-Day-HourMinuteSecond.

Why use chronological numbers instead of incremental numbers like 1001, 1002, 1003 for your law office file structure? Chronological numbers contain easy to use information that can never be gleaned from an incremental number. What does matter number 1204 tell you? Does it tell you that it was case number 1,204 that you ever opened? So what. What can you do with that information? Nothing. What does the number 2011-01-25-171355 tell you? A great deal of useable, sortable information. That chronological number tells you the case was opened January 25, 2011 at 3:13 PM. That number can be sorted and searched by you to find out how many cases you opened in 2011, how many were opened in January 2011 and so on.

Matter Title

Once you decide on a logical numbering system for your law office files, you need to assign a human readable title to the matter. The style of a legal pleading is a great example of a “human readable” matter title. Think of matter titles as things like “State v. John Jones”, or “John Jones v. Big Corp. Int’l et al”. The title of the matter should be a quick way for you to visually recognize what the case is about. Is that John Jones’ divorce case, or is it John Jones’ real estate closing on his house? The matter titles “John Jones v. Mary Jones” or “Closing on 555 Easy Street, Dallas, TX” would let you know in a second which case is which.

Matter Category

All cases are of some category. And no, you really shouldn’t consider “easy money” as a category of case! Category is the top level of the law office case type. Think “Criminal”, “Divorce”, “Real Estate” and “Bankruptcy”. Those terms immediately give you a class of cases. You can look at the category title and know exactly with what kind of case you are dealing. GoMatters stores the category of case in… you guessed it, the “Matter Category” matter field.

Matter Description

The second level of case hierarchy is the description. Is your criminal (category) case a “Murder”, “DUI” or “Trespassing” case? The matter description is one level deeper in your case file structure than the category.

Best practice would be to establish a set of guidelines for matter title, matter category and matter description within your office. Mimic the court case style for title. Keep categories and descriptions very short, i.e. “Bankruptcy” (category) “Chapter 7″ (description).

Here are a few examples of the logic in graphical format:

  • 2011-01-25-171355 (matter number = year date month hour minute second)
    • “State v. Johnson” (matter title = case style)
      • Criminal (matter category = general type of case)
        • Murder (matter description = specific type of case)
  • 2011-01-26-084121 (matter number = year date month hour minute second)
    • “Foreclosure on 620 Mega Mansion Dr., San Francisco, CA” (matter title = case style)
      • Real Estate (matter category = general type of case)
        • Foreclosure (matter description = specific type of case)
  • 11-73352 (matter number = court case number)
    • “Jack Johnson and Ann Johnson” (matter title = case style)
      • Bankruptcy (matter category = general type of case)
        • Chapter 7 (matter description = specific type of case)

Don’t Use Background Themes Or Wallpaper

Nothing screams “I have no mastery of email, I just like pretty things” better than background themes or wallpaper in email. Having a nice pretty background on your email does nothing to show your prowess as a skilled litigator and legal technology innovator. It just shows you like pretty things… and clogging up other people’s inbox limits with worthless attachments.

Yes, worthless attachments because don’t forget, that pretty email background comes through as an attachment which means not only is your email larger than it needs to be, but the email also has an extra paperclip attachment which will befuddled the recipient endlessly as they click the important email attachment from their big time lawyer only to find the file is a download of pretty flowers.

Don’t Forget To Include Matter Numbers And Titles In The Subject Line

Organizing your email is all about the search. To search emails quickly and efficiently, include the full Matter / Case Number and Title in the email subject line. GoMatters will take care of this for you by pre-formatting an email when you click a contact email address from the Matters app.

You would include the full Matter / Case Number in the Re: clause of a letter, wouldn’t you? It only makes sense to do it in an email, too. Which is easier to find by an email search in “2010-011A Jones v. Jones, Deposition Schedule”, “2010-011A” or “Deposition Schedule”. Searching by matter number will deliver all emails ever sent or received in the case. Searching by “Deposition Schedule” will do nothing for you that you can really use because you will have to sift through the search results further to find your matter. Just make it force of habit: email subject line = “Matter Number -> Matter Title -> Topic”.

Don’t Forget Formality With Your Email

Somewhere along the technological evolutionary curve, the business world began to associate email as being less formal than older alternative forms of business communication. Your email should maintain the same formality as an other communication sent from your office. You are representing your client in a professional capacity. It might be difficult to explain to your client an email to opposing counsel in a hotly contested matter that starts out with “Dude…”.