Case Study for Large Upstate New York County
The Tecana electronic payment voucher system was developed to support Assigned Counsel and Conflict Defender programs. The system enables counties to replace their paper-based systems for processing payment vouchers. The software provides the following functions:
- a process for creating cases including eligibility checking and notification to attorneys;
- a process for attorneys to track their time and expenses and submit vouchers online within the system;
- a process for online review / modification / approval of payment vouchers by both the Assigned Counsel Office and the Court;
- a process to release approved vouchers for payment;
- Automatic enforcement of rules for submission and payment;
- Flexible reporting and auditing features;
The software was initially developed in New York state for a county that does not have a Public Defender office and therefore performs a large volume of Assigned Counsel cases.
The system has improved program oversight by enabling Program Administrators to consistently enforce rules and to focus time on auditing the system instead of processing paper. The system has a flexible reporting module that makes it easy to audit and report on system activity and to satisfy information requests from state agencies.
The system has proven to be easy to use for both attorneys and judges. Attorneys like the electronic system because it takes them less time to prepare and submit vouchers, they are able to get paid more quickly, and they have more time available to focus on representing clients instead of administrative tasks.
Costs have been significantly reduced since the system began operations due to a combination of reduced administrative workload and improved enforcement of rules. The average costs per case for Onondaga county is much lower than the average for other assigned counsel programs in the state.
This system is available today! If you’d like to learn more, please contact us – we look forward to hearing from you.