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Legal Hub: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Originally published in our free TL NewsWire newsletter. Instead of reading TL NewsWire here, sign up now to receive future issues via email.


Traditional practice management systems limit access to those who work at your law firm. This results in using email to send documents to clients and others. Email suffers from several problems such as the risk of misaddressing your message, the inability to track receipt and activity by recipients, and limits on attachment size. Instead of using email or implementing a separate solution such as SharePoint, practice management systems should have built-in collaboration tools.

Legal Hub by PBworks … in One Sentence

PBworks' Legal Hub is a document and practice management system and client portal for managing matters and documents, and securely collaborating with clients, co-counsel, and others.

The Killer Feature

Legal Hub has catered to large law firms for years. The new version released this month caters to solos and small law firms as well. Some solos and small law firms may find that they never need to pay for LegalHub. That's because it's free for up to 15 internal users, up to five external users, up to five clients and matters, and up to 50 MB of storage. This free plan also includes email technical support. You need not provide a credit card to get started.

"For years, leading law firms from the AmLaw 100 to solo practitioners have used Legal Hub to manage key client relationships and matters," PBworks CEO Jim Groff told us. "Now any law firm can sign up and try it for free."

Other Notable Features

Legal Hub describes itself as a SharePoint alternative built specifically for law firms. Because Legal Hub is a cloud application, law firms need not contend with SharePoint's complexity and hardware requirements.

You begin by setting up your clients and their respective matters, and then granting access rights to the matters you create. Each Matter has a summary page listing the Matter Number, status, the internal team, key external contacts, etc. From this page, you can drill down to access related documents, email, meetings, notes, and tasks. Legal Hub features a system-wide Google-style search so that you quickly find anything across all clients and matters.

You add documents and email messages to a matter using drag and drop. One-click sharing enables you to give clients and others access to select documents such as a draft agreement, pleadings, discovery documents, etc. You can see when someone accesses what you share and receive a notification via email (you can receive notifications for virtually any activity in Legal Hub).

Within each matter, you can focus on specific projects such as an upcoming closing or deposition. Each matter "workspace" contains relevant documents and email as well as tasks and deadlines. You can assign tasks to others and track their progress using a variety of reports.

Given the sensitivity of client-related information, Legal Hub uses enterprise-level encryption and security. Access rights extend all the way down to specific documents. Audit tracking logs all activity with date and time stamps.

What Else Should You Know?

If your firm exceeds the limits of the free version of Legal Hub, you can upgrade to unlimited clients and matters, as well as 100 GB of storage, for $40 per user per month. PBworks offers volume discounts beginning as 20 users. Learn more about Legal Hub.

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Topics: Collaboration/Knowledge Management | Document Management | Online/Cloud | Practice Management/Calendars | TL NewsWire
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