As our world warms up, natural disasters are becoming increasingly common. These affect us all, as individuals, businesses, and communities. 

Florida is preparing to take the brunt of Hurricane Ian this week, and many may be in need of legal support and advice in this time. But firms will have their own challenges, and may not be prepared for the influx of calls or the upheaval to their office. 

We’re here to help – providing distributed support for you and your clients. Read on to find out quick tips on preparing for a natural disaster.

Challenges for law firms

Move your systems back to remote

Many firms have moved back to a physical office, at least part-time, which means some of your preparations must be in transferring the important parts of your office online and dispersed. Not only will this help you keep your firm running in the short term, but in the long term, it improves the chances of your equipment surviving.

You also need ways to get in touch with employees, to check on their safety and stay updated on their situation.

Handle worried client calls

In an emergency, your staff will likely have more to worry about than answering client calls. But clients are likely to become more anxious if they can’t get through to anyone. Reassure them with a personable voice answering all your calls during the crisis, by turning your LEX coverage on 24/7.  

Secure client files and data

If your office is in a zone of uncertainty, then you need to be sure that all files can be accessed away from the office. All physical files should have virtual copies, and these should be accessible by the necessary people.

How can you prepare?

Establish communication plans for your employees

This could be via phone calls to their mobiles, or team collaboration software. Your LEX account includes team messaging and will allow you to contact team members on a secure platform. Just make sure you know who is responsible for contacting staff members to check their safety.

Ensure everyone has the tools to work from home if needed

You don’t want to rush people back to an office that isn’t secure to keep your firm running. With the technology available, it is easier than ever for people to seamlessly move between their home and the office.

Back up all files and contact data

Your CRM may help with this, along with cloud storage solutions. However, remember that security is vital, and so you need to have multi-factor authentication on these files to protect client data.

Rely on your virtual reception service

With LEX on board, you don’t have to worry. With our distributed working model, our receptionists are based across the country and beyond, so your clients experience no difference in your answering.

How LEX can help

Distributed service

Our legal virtual receptionists are located across the US (along with Canada and the UK) to ensure that service levels remain consistent. That means that any time a potential client calls, there’s a real voice on the other end. For your clients, this is the reassurance they need.

Work from anywhere tools

Technology has made it easier than ever for attorneys to work from anywhere. Every LEX account comes with tools to help you work remotely, including our mobile app, Teleport video conferencing, and Setmore calendars.

24/7 coverage

We are here to support your firm, covering your inbound calls 24/7 as long as you need. You can easily ask us to activate your after-hours call script while you prepare, and ensure that no caller is missed in the uncertainty.

Our thoughts are with our clients and employees affected by Hurricane Ian at the moment. We hope everyone is staying safe and secure at this time.

Quick Takeaways

  • Law firms experience many challenges during a natural disaster, normally at the same time that many new clients are trying to contact you.
  • LEX is here to keep your practice open, answering your calls 24/7 until the danger passes.
  • For more information on preparing, check out disaster resources from the ABA and Florida Bar.
  • Stay safe!