Purpose: Display a list of files, stored in Microsoft SharePoint, that are related to a specific case in LegalServer.
Cost: $4500 one-time setup fee. Non-standard configurations as described below may require additional costs. Migrating documents to Sharepoint from your existing setup is an additional hourly cost.
Video: Working with SharePoint
Requirements: Microsoft Azure, Microsoft SharePoint (cloud version only)
Client must provide an Azure AD Global Administrator account
Client must provide complete url links to their Demo and Live SharePoint document libraries (e.g., https://legalserver.sharepoint.com/sites/ms-demo/Shared%20Documents)
SharePoint libraries must have the Require Check Out setting in the Versioning Settings set to No for the integration to properly create files everyone can see.
Agencies will need to share a set of Global Administrator Credentials with LegalServer for their Sharepoint instances. Agencies should send those via the Secure Messaging Tool. LegalServer staff will create the API listener service in your Azure environment.
The SharePoint folder is created via API call from your intake process, typically on the disposition step via the Create Sharepoint Folder block. If you create a new intake process after going live with SharePoint integration, please include the folder creation block on your new intake process. This can also be called from an auxiliary process for existing cases.
There are multiple ways that we have configured Sharepoint with different levels of complexity and cost.
Standard 1 library per LegalServer Site Setup
Agencies will also need to identify the libraries to connect with their Live and Demo sites. These can be in the same Sharepoint site or separate sites depending on the Agencies preference.
Choice of Libraries per LegalServer Site Setup
Some Agencies may want to have a choice of which Sharepoint Library a case folder should be saved in. For details, please see the Multiple Sharepoint Libraries - Admin Setup help page. This currently needs to be enabled by LegalServer.
EPONA 1 Library per Case Setup
Working with EPONA as outside consultants, we are able to configure separate libraries for each case. This configuration is not standard, so if you are interested in this, please contact Sales for pricing.
EPONA 1 Library per Outreach Setup
In addition to having 1 Library per case, with EPONA, we are also able to setup 1 Library per Outreach. Again, this is a non-standard setup, and contact Sales if you are interested. Creating folders in a given Library for Outreaches is on our roadmap but is not yet available.
An administrator will need to add the Sharepoint Documents block to a case profile once the SharePoint add-on has been activated:
The create SharePoint folder block will need to be on both the Intake Process (for new cases) and an Aux Process (for existing cases). Case folders will be created with the case number of the case as the folder name. Currently, changing the name of that folder will break the relationship. The Sharepoint Documents Block will show the related folder. If there is no folder, an instruction displaying that fact is shown instead. If you set the SharePoint Create Case Folder Process on the back of the block to the Aux Process for the create folder block, a link to that process will appear in the instruction.
Clicking on any of these links will take the user to either the desktop or web version of Microsoft Office, depending on the user's own settings and which Microsoft products you have made available to users. It is not controlled by LegalServer but by the user's browser and device settings. The documents displayed are now sortable by name or modification date. As of 2021-04-29 on Demo and 2021-05-07 on Live, you have the option of four versions of sorting by file name -- Ascending/Descending and Within Folders/Altogether. Sorting by Modification Date is purely looking at all files and then sorting regardless of folder. To reset the list to the default sort, click the reset filter button in the top right, reload the page, or click the Sort by Filename option four times.
With the block, you are able to also drag and drop files directly into SharePoint from your desktop. Dragging files into subfolders highlights the subfolder's row and not the whole set of documents, LegalServer will automatically rename the file to remove any special characters. If a file is uploaded via drag and drop and one with the same name already exists, you will be prompted before it is overwritten. File uploads are currently limited to 50mb through LegalServer. Larger files may be uploaded through SharePoint directly.
When creating a file using a New Style Document Template within LegalServer, it will automatically save to SharePoint. You will have to be logged into SharePoint for this to work. If you are not logged in, you will be prompted to log in to do so. Currently, all Document Templates will save as RTF files. You can create a Power Automate function that will convert all of the RTF files to DOCX files if you want to extend the functionality and make the generated documents editable in Word Online. Old Style Document Templates will not save to SharePoint.
Uploading a file via adding a Case Note will add that file to SharePoint. Using the Static Add Document form will also save it in Sharepoint. Adding a file to a case via email will not. Immigration forms will not automatically save the generated forms to Sharepoint.
If the query to review the full set of documents in Sharepoint takes a long time, the page will finish loading and display an instruction informing you of the long load time. You'll be given a link to the related Sharepoint folder to open it directly in Sharepoint instead of displaying in LegalServer. As of 2021-05-06 on Demo and 2021-05-14 on Live, this time limit is now configurable on the block itself. The back end of the block lets you choose between short (10 seconds), medium (20 seconds), and long (30 seconds) timeouts.
Permissions within SharePoint are managed within SharePoint. While LegalServer can communicate with SharePoint to include metadata about the case (in the form of LegalServer field values sent by an API call), your agency will need to consult with a SharePoint expert if you want to leverage that information into any business processes that you want to enforce inside SharePoint.
SharePoint Configuration Options
One benefit of SharePoint is the ability to add in other aspects of the Microsoft suite of tools. PowerAutomate is utilized in the examples below as tested in April 2021. Please realize that creating Flows in Power Automate is done on a site/library basis, so you may need to have multiple copies for multiple libraries. There may also be rate limits and activation caps to consider given larger volumes. Microsoft's products change over time so these examples may not be a perfect match to Power Automate if you go to set them up. LegalServer strongly recommends testing these on your Demo Site and Library first before enabling on your Live site and Sharepoint Library.
Creating Subfolders via Power Automate
For example, a Power Automate Flow could be set up to automatically create subfolders for a case once the initial case folder has been created by LegalServer.
The above example creates a subfolder named "documents" in any folder created at the root level of the Sharepoint Library named "RTFtoDOC". It only happens at that level and not to subfolders. The Create new folder action could be repeated for additional folders as well.
Converting to DOCX via Power Automate
Another (and unfortunately more complex) option is converting a file to Docx via Power Automate. Due to the nature of the files, you cannot automatically go from RTF to DOCX directly, even with Microsoft's tools. Microsoft does allow you to convert from RTF to DOC. Once in a DOC file, there is an option to convert to DOCX from within Word Online. The following Flow would convert the file to the same name, save it in the same directory, and then delete the RTF file. That last step may be useful if you are only getting RTF files from LegalServer Templates. If you are getting RTF files elsewhere, you may want to add additional Condition steps or remove it completely. DO NOT IMPLEMENT THIS LAST STEP IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO DELETE FILES.
On the first step, you can narrow the Flow's focus to just RTF files by using the menu to open the settings for the step. Then under Trigger Conditions add:
Once you have the new DOC file, opening it will give you the option to convert to DOCX in Word Online. Converting to DOCX will then leave you with two copies of the file. If you don't want to have that interim DOC file (and are not concerned about other DOC files being converted to DOCX that did not start as LegalServer Templates), you can add a second flow to remove the interim DOC file.
Note that the first step would have a Trigger Condition like above but specifying "docx" instead of "rtf". Then the second step uses dynamic content from the first step, while the third step uses dynamic content from the second (and not from the first).
Again, these Flows may delete the original versions of your documents. If that is a concern, DO NOT IMPLEMENT THEM. Consider additional Conditions or limits on them. Perhaps they only run in certain subfolders or there is a way to mark a file to prevent removal.
Lastly, some LegalServer consultants have tied in the use of LegalServer APIs to pull additional case related metadata into SharePoint.