Making Jackson reforms smoother with Omnia
The new year is upon us and for many solicitors and costs lawyers this signals the final countdown to April and the implementation of the Jackson Reforms. Lord Justice Jackson’s recommendations will see a new budgeting regime for managing legal costs, meaning law firms have to start preparing now to ensure their processes are in-line with these reforms in three months time.
To help solicitors and costs lawyers to deal with this change easily and effectively, revolutionary web-based software Omnia has been developed to help law firms produce not only the new Costs Budgets but also Bills of Costs and Costs Schedules. It should also give firms a tighter control over the cost efficiency of their work.
Sue Nash, founder of Omnia, and of legal costs company Litigation Costs Services, explains: “The new system will require each side in a dispute to produce an estimate of how much each phase of a case will cost. The budgets will be approved by a judge as the litigation progresses and they will have authority to set the budgets to ensure that the proposed costs are proportionate to the value and the facts of the claim itself.
“Costs budgeting pilot schemes have been carried out in various courts up and down the country but for many lawyers the new costs budgeting regime represents a wholesale shift away from what they know. Few individuals or businesses would disagree with Lord Justice Jackson’s objective to make litigation less costly and because of this prevailing public (and judicial) attitude, solicitors must prepare now to meet these challenges come April.”
The Omnia software, which is available to buy now, integrates with existing PMS/CMS systems and works by monitoring budgeted costs against actual work done and then producing a costs budgeting form H/HB. This at-a-glance overview the software provides makes a law firm’s cost-to-revenue ratio clear and easy to monitor.