Legal Technology Explained: Everything Lawyers Need to Know

Technology in the legal sector is evolving. Though the legal sector is known for being a conservative, old-school business, legal technology provides modern lawyers a competitive advantage to thrive in this digital world. It helps lawyers and law firms digitize the processes involved in providing legal services. From personal computers to email, to cloud-based software solutions, modern lawyers are aware of the time-saving benefits of technology and how it can significantly improve productivity at law firms.

But for those who are not so tech-savvy and still use a more traditional, paper-based process, it can be quite confusing. But don’t worry! We have compiled a glossary of technical terms to get you started on your digital journey.

Legal Technology Glossary of Terms


Automation involves the use of machines, computers, or “bots” to perform tasks with little to no human intervention. Processes such as approvals, contract review, NDAs, and matter management can all be automated and streamlined with the right legal case management software.


When someone says their application or software is cloud-based, it simply means that it is accessible via the internet. Cloud offers data storage using virtual servers instead of using the storage space on your phone, computer, or tablet. With cloud-based applications, legal professionals can store their matter data and access it whenever and wherever they need it.


Legal firms can leverage electronic billing systems to effectively manage invoice intake, implement billing guidelines, and send invoices for approval.

Electronic Service

An electronic service or e-service allows the transfer of legal documents electronically between a client and a legal service provider. It ensures that the correct document (and its proper version) reaches the intended destination.


This is a crucial feature to have in a legal case management application or software since it prevents unauthorized access to important data by converting information or data into code. Encryption ensures that data can only be read or accessed if you have the associated code to decrypt it.


Integration enables an existing system or application to connect with another platform to enhance data exchange accuracy, automate workflow, and boost efficiency.

Multi-factor Authentication

To ensure the security of information, multi-factor authentication requires multiple factors (such as a password plus the correct code sent to the owner’s smartphone) instead of a single factor (just the password) before the user’s identity is authenticated and allowed access.

Role-based Access Control

With role-based access control, only users with the authority to access certain data can be given permission. It restricts other users from accessing information that does not concern them.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)

This is software that is accessed online through a subscription. Legal firms do not need to pay an exorbitant sum to “purchase” the software, but instead get charged via a per-use basis or a monthly recurring basis.

SQL Report Builder

An SQL report builder allows users to create custom reports and dashboards so they can keep track of important trends and details across matters.


A workflow is a structured process that follows a sequence of tasks. Automation can help streamline and accelerate a legal firm’s workflow so legal professionals can concentrate on more important tasks.

Clarra provides cloud-based law practice and legal case management software that simplifies the management of complex details and resources associated with all matters across your firm. To learn how you can easily leverage legal technology in your practice, connect with us today!