Tunde Ojo on Communicating with Law Firms During COVID-19

Over the last decade, technology has advanced at an increasingly rapid pace, affecting how industries around the world do business. As a result of the on-going pandemic, fields that typically rely on face-to-face interaction, like the legal system, are having to adopt new practices and procedures that may impact how the industry functions permanently.

Under ordinary circumstances, Tunde Ojo from the Kent, UK says in-person interaction is generally used for attorney-client meetings to discuss pending legal cases. However, medical researchers have discovered that the virus can spread via respiratory droplets generated by a cough or sneeze, through close and prolonged personal contact, or by touching a virus-ridden object and then touching your nose, eyes, or mouth. Consequently, only essential businesses are permitted to stay open, while other businesses close their doors to limit the spread of the virus.

According to the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) in the U.K., the government has acknowledged several key workers that are ‘essential to the running of the justice system.’ Essential workers include advocates that are required to appear before a court or tribunal, legal practitioners that are working on imminent tribunal hearings such as barristers and legal executives, solicitors acting in the execution of wills, and attorneys that advise people living in institutions or deprived of their liberty. However, essential workers around the world are being advised to work remotely whenever possible. Thus, Tunde Ojo, a well-respected law professional in the U.K., offers his advice on how to best communicate with clients during these unprecedented times.

Why Interviews are Important

Phone Calls and Text Messaging

Video Conferencing

When using video conferencing for the provision of legal advice or services, Tunde Ojo suggests that lawyers and paralegals follow his tips. Firstly, lawyers must get consent from the client to proceed with video conferencing. Secondly, all individuals in remote locations should introduce themselves to ensure that the privilege and confidentiality of the case are not compromised. Furthermore, attorneys must confirm that no unidentified parties are present to improperly influence the client. Moreover, if documentation is required to verify one’s identity, lawyers should demand a copy of their ID is produced prior to the online meeting. Finally, it is important to maintain detailed records of all meetings, in-person or online, including the date, start and end time, mode of communication, and a list of the individuals present.

Email and File-sharing

Face-to-Face Communication

Jail Visitation

Most industries have had to alter their typical practices of doing business, and the legal profession has been no exception. As medical experts and the public at large work hard to defeat COVID-19, several industries continue to invest in technologies that allow for remote access and greater convenience. Meanwhile, courts are considering whether video conferencing will be used as a permanent tool to keep up with a demanding number of cases. Therefore, Ojo predicts that COVID-19 may have a long-lasting impact on the legal system moving forward.

Folkestone, Kent, UK | Legal Services | www.tunde-ojo.com