Total Attorneys Raises the Price on its Practice Management Software [UPDATED]

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Total Attorneys launched its practice management software with a $1/month price tag. The obvious reason why was TA’s add-ons, which was how Total Attorneys planned to make its money.

The problem, from my perspective anyway, was that this turned the practice management software into a sales funnel. I didn’t see how Total Attorneys would be motivated to go up against software with a more “serious” price tag, like Clio, MyCase, and Rocket Matter.

Maybe I was right.

Total Attorneys has raised the price of its practice management software to $20/month for up to 2 users, $40/month for 3–10 users, and will quote rates for larger firms. (Thanks to Andrea for pointing out the new pricing in our comments.) Here’s how Total Attorneys founder, Ed Scanlan, explains the reason for the new pricing:

We have received such positive response from many firms sharing their desire for us to keep investing in building out the system with additional functionality. We decided it best to charge a what we believe to be a fair price to fund the development of the features our users are requesting.

In other words, Total Attorneys couldn’t satisfy users’ expectations at $1/month. I’ve met Ed several times and talked about his software, and I don’t think he would stand for that. He was practically giddy with pride when the iPad app was released at TechShow in 2012. Given his enthusiasm, I think Ed would rather change the business model than compromise on his vision for the software.

Despite the greater cost (which is still less than any of its competitors), I think the new pricing is good news for lawyers who want to use practice management software.

UPDATE: Existing accounts will be free until January 2014, when they will have to update to the new pricing terms.

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  • http://myshingle.com/ Carolyn Elefant

    Interesting development – but not unexpected. The question is at what kind of protection will lawyers have from rate increases from cloud-based providers? Back in the dark ages, before efiling and Fastcase and Google Scholar, Lexis and Westlaw were the only game in town and could charge exorbitant fees for legal research. They used the threat of price increases to lock users into long term contracts. Today’s increased competition is a check against price increases – but it’s also fairly easy to pick up and move from one legal research provider to another, with the only cost being a short learning curve.
    By contrast, transferring from one cloud system to another may not be as seamless. Even with frequent back up and easy downloads, you’ve go to upload that stuff back into the cloud – maybe under a new filing system – if you decide to move. Because of limited practical alternatives, cloud based companies may be able to raise prices with little oversight. It won’t happen just yet – the incumbents will want to establish a hold in the market and keep new entrants out. Once potential challengers are dispatched and only a handful of companies dominate the market, that’s when we can expect the increases.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I would assume TA would let existing users keep their $1/month pricing, since that’s what they promised, but I’m following up now to find out for sure.

      On portability, Google has been way out ahead on this with Takeout, and I hope to see other cloud services providers follow suit. I avoid services that try to lock me in like the plague. If I can’t get my data out, that’s a sign that the service may be more interested in holding me hostage than keeping me happy.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Post updated. TA is going to require existing users to pay the new prices, but their accounts will be free until January 2014.

      • https://www.roundtablelaw.ca/ Jason Morris

        Clio, as I understand it, also has a “take your data with you” policy, where you can download everything you want into an industry-standard format, to enable you to upload it into any other system you want. That seems like one for the must-have list.

  • Andrea

    Hey Sam! Thanks for the shout out credit and so fast too! I am a complete newbie to this whole blog stuff, still trying to figure out how it works, etc…. but how exciting to see that the info I brought to the forum comments as a mere incredulous “can you believe this?!” enabled you to quickly churn out a concise summary and announcement to all. I wanted to add the update that I still haven’t received a response yet to my emails (though only sent late yesterday) to both support AND the rep guy I was working with the very reasonable question of WHEN and WHERE this new pricing is listed/announced, most hopefully on their own website but perhaps a public release statement or anything like that. One thing’s for sure, I think they ought to disable the following link, eh??!
    http://www.totalattorneys.com/sign-up/starter-plan/?campaign_id=701C0000000gte3

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I think you stumbled on the price change before Total Attorneys was ready to announce it publicly.

      • http://www.findlaw.com/ Willie Peacock

        Oddly enough, I was notified of the possibility of a price change weeks ago. An email from Ed Scanlan announced that our accounts would be free until the end of the year (whoo-hoo! $10 saved!), followed by the updated pricing (TBD).

        That was April 12. I’ve been waiting since to find out what the new pricing scheme would be.

        As a user of the software, I’m not sure I’m going to stick around post-change. I only practice part-time. Plus, I went with TA because (a) it was cheaper and (b) it met my very modest needs.

    • Rita

      I was informed that Total Attorneys is terminating their Practice Management Software altogether, and should be informing users of their options in transferring their documents, contacts, etc.