Many lawyers need to be in two places at once. Lawyers get over-booked, and handle multiple cases in multiple jurisdictions that require frequent court appearances. It can even happen in the same courthouse: I have had multiple cases at a time be called in front of different judges, and have missed the calling of my case by one judge because I was appearing in front of another across the hall. Typically judges understand the need to be in two places at once. Many, if not most, of these hearings are simply opportunities for the lawyers to ask the judge for another hearing, and to get more time to work on the case. The wheels of justice turn slowly.
A new app called StandIn promises to fix this problem from the comfort of your smartphone. If you’re over-booked and need to be in two places at once, you can hire a stand-in lawyer via the app, pay them whatever fee they are asking for this service, and then post a mandatory review of the stand-in’s services. StandIn takes a $7.50 “transaction fee” out of every transaction.
My verdict on StandIn is still out. It seems like it is a solution in search of a problem. Usually, when I know I have a scheduling conflict, I can solve that problem with a telephone call or email to another attorney to cover for me. When I have missed a judge calling my case because I am across the hall in another courtroom, I can just ask the judge to recall it or wait until the end of the docket. Maybe the best option is to plan ahead.
Featured image: “close up of human hand touching smartphone display” from Shutterstock.