PCLaw Annual Maintenance Plans

Do I need to renew the Annual Maintenance Plan (AMP)?

My first response has always been: “Consider the AMP as an insurance policy on your financial data.”  Just as accidents cannot be predicted, neither can corrupt databases or hard-drive crashes.  I have insurance on my car, my house, my health – just in case I need to replace these items or be hospitalized unexpectedly.

Why should we view our financial health any differently?

Let’s give consideration to how much data is entered on a daily basis in PCLaw.  There is time, costs and billings as they related to client files, including trust transactions and other items involving the business operation of the firm.  That is a lot of data.  So, when a database contains thousands of transactions becomes corrupt, sometimes the only solution is to have Lexis Nexis rebuild the database “behind the scenes”.  The AMP is needed to do this.

Here are other scenarios I have discussed with clients concerning their AMP:

“I have a backup, so I can always do a restoral tomorrow, if the data becomes corrupt.” 

Of course, that would be assuming you have tested the backup and know you can do a restoral.  Do you have 100% confidence the last backup of PCLaw was a good one?  What is your risk level? Maybe it is a backup from 3 days or 3 weeks ago that ultimately is the “good” one.  What is the cost to your firm to have the staff re-do 3 days or 3 weeks work or more?  Not to mention the challenge with maintaining “today’s” work schedule, while also trying to re-enter work from the past.

“I just don’t think I need every upgrade.  I’ll save money and pay for AMP every once in a while.” 

While this sounds like a plan that could work, there is now a reinstatement fee on top of the AMP cost.  So waiting 2 or more years could end up costing you more money in the long run.  The reinstatement fee is based on both the number of users and the number of months your firm operates without AMP.  I have checked this cost for 2 firms, who both subsequently decided to maintain their AMP.  If you want a more detailed quote on this cost, let me know, I’d be happy to provide the answer.  Otherwise, you know PCLaw Sales would gladly answer any questions you have concerning AMP.

“I’m going to reduce the number of licensed users on PCLaw to save on AMP cost.”

While initially this can seem like a good idea over the long term it might not be a great savings.  Recently a firm with a 4-user license considered dropping to 3 users.  Saving $140/year.  This sounded ok, until we also considered the cost to the firm of having one person with an annual salary of 30,000/yr waiting 5 minutes a day to use PCLaw.  Over a 48 week period, assuming four weeks of vacation, the cost to the firm would be $330 for approximately 20 hours of time spent “waiting for my turn on PCLaw”.  How’s the renewal price of $140 sound now?

Another tip that is connected with this idea of reducing the number of licenses I should mention is this:   If the firm gave up the 4th license, then decided to add a 5th person to the firm and wanted to have the flexibility of having the 4th license again, it would currently cost $770 to buy back the license they gave up.  So, in this scenario, only if they went without support for over 5 years would they save the amount equivalent to buying back the license they gave up.

Too many times I have seen a firm give up a license and 3 years later their practice has changed.  I encourage clients to take their time when considering this particular decision. It’s not a decision to be made in haste, particularly during what can be a stressful time when a partnership splits.

I hope these scenarios help you recognize the value of AMP, or at least what you need to consider when renewing your PCLaw license.

If you’d like assistance with your annual renewal, I can easily process the online payment for you.  Alternatively, you can contact PCLaw Sales directly:  1-800-387-2898 to renew your license.  Remember to mention I am the CIC (Certified Independent Consultant) who recommended you renew your support contract for PCLaw.

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