External Forms

Purpose: Allows you to send a link to someone from a case, typically a client. The link starts an External Process, which can contain one or more External Forms. Data collected on the external form(s) is saved to the case it was sent from.

You can send the link by email, SMS if enabled on your site, or by getting a URL that can be copied and sent via whatever means you desire (external chat program, etc.). 

Cost: None. We removed the charge for this module at the beginning of the COVID 19 lockdown restrictions and enabled it on all sites.

Watch: Jeff Hogue's presentation on External Forms during a community call here: https://youtu.be/mJt0zDOz-vM

Quick Summary for the Impatient

  • Create your External Profile (what the client will see after they submit the external form).

  • Create your External Auxiliary Form (the form the client will fill out). Can be multiple forms.

  • Create your External Auxiliary Process to call your shiny new form, and use your shiny new External Profile as the Followup Profile.

  • NB: Note the "External" labels above. They are important.

  • Create a standard auxiliary form and put the Client Survey Send Request block on it (this is what staff will use to select an External Auxiliary Process and send the link to the client/person).

  • Create a standard auxiliary process to call that form.

  • Add your shiny new standard auxiliary process to the Actions menu (for staff to pick the external process and get/send the link)

  • Go to a case, click your new link, pick your new external auxiliary process, send.

Create External Process, Form, and Profile

This is done from the main Admin > Processes, Forms, and Profiles page, with the Module set to the default Matter/Case.

Create an External Profile: 

  • Actions > New Matter External Profile

  • The person will see this profile after the external process is completed. This can be as simple as an Instruction element that says "Thank you for your response.", or as complicated as you want it (see the Retainer Example link below).

Create an External Auxiliary Form:

  • Actions > New External Auxiliary Form 

  • This is the form the person will see when they click the external form link and verify their identity. It contains the fields and other elements you want them to see.

  • You may also want to include the Send Email block on your form to have an email sent when the client submits the external form.

Create an External Auxiliary Process: 

  • Actions > New External Auxiliary Process 

  • Enable the form(s) you just created. 

  • Make sure you select your shiny new external profile as the Followup Profile. Without a followup profile, the person filling out the form will get a generic, unhelpful page, and the Completed date will not be recorded.

  • An example might be the 'Housing Stability Update' process, which includes the forms called 'Housing Update Step 1' and 'Housing Update Step 2'.

  • After you save the process, optionally edit it if you want to change the Identity Verification Type. The default is Date of Birth. The other options are Zip/Postal Code and Home Phone Number. All of these are the client's information as stored on the case.

Create a Form and a Process for Staff to Send a Link to Clients

This is done from the main Admin > Processes, Forms, and Profiles page, with the Module set to the default Matter/Case.

Auxiliary Form:

  • Place the 'Client Survey Send Request' block on a standard (not external) auxiliary form called something like 'Send External Form'.

  • Set "Survey Type" in the block to "Client Related To A Case - Matter Aux Form".

  • Configure the SMS and Email options as desired. NB: You can change the Default Email Body text (and Default SMS text if you have it), but you must include the "[External Link]", including the brackets, or everyone will be sad. The "[External Link]" text is a marker that will replaced by the link the person will click on. LegalServer generates the link and replaces "[External Link]" with it when you click Send.

Auxiliary Process:

  • Create a standard (not external) auxiliary process, something like 'Send External Form Process', and enable the form 'Send External Form' form you just created.

  • You can create multiple auxiliary "send" processes, but that's not required. Staff can pick from any External Auxiliary Processes enabled on a single send form.

Actions Menu:

Add your process to the Actions menu for cases. Where to do this varies depending on your site setup. A common setup is in "Main Profile Boxes" on the Menu Boxes tab of the Admin > Processes, Forms, and Profiles page. You may instead have Side/Action Elements configured directly on the Main Profile.

View Log of Responses on the Case Profile

Put the Client Survey Results block in the desired location on your case profile(s).

Send an Email When a Form is Completed

The Send Email block is often used on an external form to notify staff when an external form is completed.

What the Recipient Sees

Retainer Example

Community contributed example for a retainer. External Forms - Retainer Example.

Optional: Provide a way for staff to fill out or view what was entered on an External Form

You may want to let staff fill out the same form using a separate process. For example, if staff already have the client on the phone, they could use "Staff Complete Demographics Update" instead of "Send Client External Form" and choosing the Demographics Update external process.

You may want to do this as a convenient way for staff to see the information the person entered.

If this is desired, add another standard auxiliary process like External Form Completion by Staff. This can be used by staff to fill out the same form for the client (over the phone for example) instead of sending the external form.

Instead of having this process set to display the External Profile, consider creating another step that has summary or display only fields for your staff to see a summary of what they entered.


Currently only limited information is available for external forms in reports. Create a report based on the top level "Survey Questions" table.

Known Issues

Embedded reports using the Report Part Block will not display on an External Form. This is intentional and not a bug that will be fixed.

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