Good client communications are crucial for lawyers or law firms to have long-term professional success. The most common grievances result from the lack of clear communication between attorney and client. Lawyers routinely send letters to their clients through U.S. mail or e-mail to communicate with them. However, client letters are not like ordinary letters and you need to be trained and skilled in drafting the same. Depending upon the purpose, the nature of the content may differ. Effective and accurate client letter transcription is essential to convey all that the attorney is dictating through the letter. Let’s take a look into the different types of letters and explore why the transcription process is significant.
These types of letters convey ‘non-legal’ information to the client such as:
- Confirming a meeting
- Summarizing a telephone conversation
- Notifying the client regarding the status of their legal matter
- Forwarding a document to the client
Non-legal letters are often sent to clients as an e-mail communication.
Opinion letters convey legal analysis in a letter form. These types of letters state the conclusions of the law firm, which specify whether the client’s actions comply / don’t comply with the law. They are very specialized, formal documents that express the legal opinion of the law firm regarding the legal validity of a proposed action by client.
These are the more common type of client letters that convey legal analysis. An advisory letter is similar to an office memo since it presents a well-balanced analysis of the law even though the legal discussion is more succinct than in office memo. The advisory letter often includes:
- Discussion of a client’s options
- Advantages and disadvantages of each available option of the client
Significance of Effective Client Letter Transcription
The role of legal transcription is different with regard to each type of letter. The first type of letter is an e-mail communication. There may not be any direct use of transcription. But, you may require the transcript of telephone recordings to summarize the conversations. The transcription process is much more significant when it comes to opinion letters and advisory letters.
The potential legal consequences from opinion letters can be enormous. If a client relies on the opinion letter of a lawyer and is sued or criminally sanctioned later due to those actions, the corresponding law firm could be exposed to liability in a malpractice action. Because of this, many law firms issue an opinion letter after reviewing and signing off the letter with at least two partners so as to represent that the firm has complied the letter with certain due diligence procedures.
Drafting advisory letters can be challenging for a lawyer because the letter has its own specific format. There are five sections – an introductory paragraph, factual summary of relevant facts, legal discussions, discussion of available options and closing paragraphs. Since most attorneys prefer to dictate client letters, reliable and quality-focused client letter transcription services will come in handy. With the help of a skilled and experienced legal transcriptionist, legal professionals can quickly draft any type of client letter and benefit from time saved as well as reduced workload.