June 12, at 8:
Get in touch and see what we can do to help you. You can listen to this interview here. Dr Toy-Cronin has raised concerns, identified through research, about the delivery of legal aid - particularly that available for civil cases.
What does this all mean? You will probably best understand what a civil matter is by the laws involved: Also included are some matters involving tenancy disputes, human rights, social security We want to reassure New Zealand that while this is a difficult situation, there are those within the legal profession who are doing something about it.
Ebborn Law has spent the past 18 months planning on how to deliver top-quality civil legal services to both privately-paying and legal aid subsidised clients. We launched this new service on 1 July The question that was left unanswered in the interview was "why are many law firms not providing this service?
The answer, according to Ebborn Law CEO Jarrod Coburn, is due to the structure of the law profession leading to a lack of good governance and empowered management. For some time now decades in fact it has been good practice for businesses to operate a ' governance-operational split '.
This is where the owners or their agents directors set the big-picture vision and the manager CEO, general manager, kaiwhakahaere is given operational freedom to achieve that vision. Many companies have a diverse range of directors but law firms are restricted and only lawyers who are working in that particular company may be directors this also stands for partnership models.
This not only reduces the experience, culture and risk appetite of the board, it also makes it hard for law firms to attract top-of-the-range management.
Few professional managers working at the executive level want to work in an organisation where the owners are working alongside them. It appears in many cases in the law profession that few directors or partners feel comfortable completely handing over the operation of firm to a CEO.
In fact, many law firms don't have a CEO, they have a 'practice manager', often someone who has worked their way up through administration and office management to the position.
This article might be seen as a harsh indictment of the profession, but if this is what it takes to start a discussion about the problems then so be it, because this is what is at the heart of the problems we are seeing with legal aid.
As Dr Toy-Cronin implied, many firms cannot handle the administration and cannot turn a profit from what is being paid by the government for legal aid work.
Ebborn Law has managed to grow to be New Zealand's largest provider of family legal aid by adopting efficient systems. The reason law firms charge such a high amount of money is because for the most part they utilise staff inefficiently.
This wastage is amplified when the systems law firms use are taken into account. Many business people would be shocked to know how many lawyers keep paper files and back them up to computer, rather than using digital systems in the first place.
Lawyers are still printing and filing emails in ! In Jarrod Coburn's opinion this is the result of a lack of strong management and good business processes. Consumer attitudes are changing.
They are demanding better stewardship of the environment; more ethical treatment of staff; improved customer service, but most of all; they are demanding value for money.ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE AND THE DUTIES OF LAWYERS: A BRAVE NEW WORLD “We’re navigating murky ethical areas where the law and rules haven’t caught up .
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