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Needles Case Management Software

samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
edited December 2014 in General Discussion
Every time I go to TechShow, I see a booth for Needles case management software, which seems to be targeted at personal injury lawyers. I've gotten a peek at the software at the booth, and based on that, it looks just terrible. It looks like it may have been the first case management software ever written, and like it's never been updated. Next to modern practice management software like Clio and Rocket Matter and MyCase, it looks just pitiful.

But, of course, looks aren't everything. There must be a good reason why Needles can afford a booth at TechShow.

If you are using it or you have tried it, why? What's so great about it? Have you tried other case/practice management software? How does Needles compare?
Post edited by samglover on

Comments

  • Sam, I've used Needles and I tend to agree. Even back in 2004 (the last time I used it) it was antiquated. 

    The thing is, for PI firms that have a volume caseload, it has features that the others probably don't have. That is, as far as I know, its niche.  If you advertise on TV and have thousands of cases, it may be the real deal.

    Personally, I hated it, having previously used a couple of iterations of Amicus Attorney; still my favorite case management software.

    Lee
  • What case management is everyone using for personal injury specific practices?  Anything in the cloud that is geared toward personal injury and not hourly billing?

    I am using Hipersoft and am happy with it but would like something in the cloud....
  • BretMooreBretMoore Atlanta, GA

    I use Clio. My practice is about 40% PI, 40% legal malpractice, and the remaining 20% is random civil / contract litigation (for the most part, some trademark / copyright stuff thrown in there, too).

    I love Clio. I don't know that it does anything specifically for a PI practice, but I'm not sure that it really needs to. I just want a nice central place for my calendar, tasks, contacts management, and document management. It interfaces w/DropBox without complaint. Cloud-based is absolutely the way to go. Now if they'd just hurry up and roll out their android app, and if they'd hurry up and roll out the Xero integration for accounting purposes... then it'd be perfect.

  • I have looked at Smart Advocate and believe it to be the very best out there... I am probably going to buy it within 30 days... will let you all know then..

  • Thomas AppelThomas Appel Walnut Creek, California

    I have not used Hipersoft or SmartAdvocate, but I am not impressed with either of their websites. I've tested Clio before and found it helpful for general case management but lacked various features that are necessary for a PI practice.

  • jaromegjaromeg Macon, Georgia

    I have tried many different practice management systems, from Time Matters to Amicus Cloud, Clio and many others. For a personal injury practice, at least for our practice, the better systems seem to be TrialWorks and actionstep. We went with TrialWorks because of its robust reporting and its integration with exchange. It also has a very good system for keeping track of documents in complex cases. And it's from a mature company with good support.

  • iselizhukiselizhuk NY
    edited December 2014

    What I've seen is that most of the desktop case/practice management software applications have been developed a while ago and do not get updated much. That includes Needles, TrialWorks, Time Matters, SAGA and others. The new cloud based systems like Clio, Rocket Matter and MyCase look much more modern, but generally have less functionality and might luck specific features needed by PI lawyers. If you looking for the case/practice management software get a demo from multiple vendors and see for yourself if they can do what you need.

    Post edited by samglover on
  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    edited January 2015

    Heh, just got a spam comment for Needles from "Ben Patterson."

    Improve your practice with law office software. it is simple, faster, it will increase your efficiency.visit here know to more law firm management software

    (Link removed.)

  • jaromegjaromeg Macon, Georgia

    A PI practice can probably do fine with one of the cloud options - Clio, MyCase, etc. But the special needs that a PI firm have include keeping track of medical bills and reports, tracking settlement negotiations, and tracking trial preparation materials. Those could probably all be done with simple spreadsheets but you would not be able to do very good reports if you used separate spreadsheets like that for each case. I'd love to hear what other PI lawyers are doing.

  • anseljhanseljh San Francisco

    Apart from the medical bills, how is that different from any other litigation practice? And what about tracking medical bills needs special treatment? Serious question — I don't understand why these are special needs.

  • Jeffrey_TaylorJeffrey_Taylor Oklahoma City

    I tried Needles a long time ago, hated the interface and everything. My practice is 75% PI and 25% small business litigation. I didn't see anything in the software that set itself apart from other case management programs for a lot less --- I used PracticeMaster and it does everything I need.

    If you're looking for a cloud-based solution that is directed to PI lawyers (they're slowly adding functionality for other practice areas), check out MerusCase. I got a sample look at this product and it's well done. (I have no affiliation with this program.)

  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin

    MerusCase is definitely an option. We found it dated-feeling, and there's no mobile version. But compared to Needles is pretty awesome in the UI department.

  • BrianMBrianM San Francisco, CA

    Most PI firms we have run into have a need to track medicals and demands because it's the lifeblood of their case. Negotiations with medical providers and carriers can be maddening if you don't have a good workflow in place to stay on top of the back and forth discussions. Needles is long in the tooth, similar to a number of niche programs, because it never had competition within their sandbox. Times are changing as other systems are jumping into the pond. The best bet, like someone earlier had mentioned, is to demo each system to see if it suits your current and future needs before making a decision.

  • tossUptossUp Kentucky, USA

    Needles doesn't look super flashy and modern (it does look like something out of an early 2000s call center) but I don't think that should be high up anyone's list of selling points anyway.

    I've used a few different case management systems (Needles, Aderant, Case Pacer) and Needles is the most flexible, allowing your firm to customize it in ways the other ones I've used have not.

    The real strength lies in its relational database back-end, and if your firm has someone that understands how that works and is halfway capable in statistics, the reports you can generate are invaluable. You can even use SQL queries if that's your jam.

    I'm sure there are other case management solutions besides Needles that offer these customization and data capabilities as well, so I'd recommend those as features as must haves over some of the flashier but less useful selling points like modern UI or cloud-based etc.

  • @ryansargent said:
    What case management is everyone using for personal injury specific practices?  Anything in the cloud that is geared toward personal injury and not hourly billing?

    I am using Hipersoft and am happy with it but would like something in the cloud....

    CaseFox is good for cloud based case management software.

  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    edited May 12

    @PhilEsq said:
    SmartAdvocate

    This is a discussion about Needles, not SmartAdvocate.

  • PhilEsqPhilEsq Roslyn, NY

    Sorry. I thought it was about personal injury case management software. The previous comment was about CasePeer which is what I responded to.

  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    edited May 12
    1. I moved that comment and reply to its own discussion thread.
    2. I just did the same for your comments about SmartAdvocate. Here's the new SmartAdvocate thread.

    Let's make that the end of off-topic discussion in this thread. Everyone go re-read the forum rules. Further off-topic comments will be deleted or moved, as appropriate.

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