President's Message
I am a sucker for all those national-(insert important topic)-awareness month celebrations. I follow the hashtags on twitter and see all the cute graphics posted by big and small companies. This month is #NationalStressAwarenessMonth, followed by #NationalMentalHealthAwareness in May. As lawyers I am sure we are all keenly aware of our stress, but the questions I have is, “What are we supposed to do when we become aware of our stress?”

The list of what I should be doing every day is overwhelming. We all know we are supposed to drink eight glasses of water a day, get 30 minutes of exercise, remove our makeup before going to bed, meditate, recycle, read, etc. Add those tasks to the multiple things we must do at work and how can anyone not be stressed? So, if the point of #NationalStressAwarenessMonth is to become aware of my stress, then give me a gold star. I am aware of my stress. 

Now that I have made you aware of your stress, let me give you one suggestion that may alleviate some of it. Get a will. I am an estate planning attorney and I spend many hours a day talking to regular people about how to get organized and plan for all the terrible things that might happen. The death of a loved one is an incredibly stressful event, and my job is to try to help them manage that stress by getting everything in order. Having a will and other estate planning documents can definitely make things less stressful for you and your family. 

Call your estate planning FAWL friend and make an appointment to talk about what you need to make things easier for you and your family if something goes wrong. Beyond that, make sure someone in your firm knows how to access all those important files, websites and accounts that run your office. As lawyers we live in a world of “what if” and we are constantly trying to think ahead so we can better prepare our clients. I urge you to think about taking steps to better prepare your family in case something goes wrong. Take care of yourself. 


-Jenny

Jenny Scavino Sieg
FAWL President

P.S. August is #NationalMakeAWillMonth

Check out FAWL's recent mental health CLE on the neuroscience of burnout:

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A word from Nota by M&T Bank

Modern Banking in your Firm's Tech Stack
Everyone likes to say that the legal profession is slow to modernize and is behind the curve when it comes to embracing emerging technology. And for many years, “they” may have been right. But in recent years, and especially since the COVID-19 pandemic, digital transformation has become increasingly important for law firms. Lawyers have learned to deliver legal services remotely, to work from home successfully, to be more mobile, and have really latched on to many of today’s affordable and cloud-based services.

Office365 is the gift that keeps on giving. It is one of the single most essential services available to law firms of every shape and size. And what about Zoom? Zoom! Zoom may have single-handedly revolutionized the way we go to court, mediate, attend events, and meet with clients and colleagues. Turn-key practice management solutions like Clio and LawPay have helped lawyers manage dates, deadlines, documents details, and payments related to a matter in affordable, efficient, and secure ways.
But what about other critical business services like banking. In the old days (read: 2019), when we spoke of and thought of banking, a brick-and-mortar shop would undoubtedly come to mind. But even banking has evolved. For years now we have logged into secure banking and financial systems to check balances, receive payments, send payments, and transfer funds. And you have not lived until you’ve deposited a check via your mobile phone! It’s an amazing time to be a lawyer. Using apps and services like these allow you to do what you want to be doing most – practicing law.

M&T Bank saw this revolution coming and wanted to lead the way in legal. They put together a team of banking and legal experts and built Nota. You may know M&T as a traditional bank, but they are leaning hard into all the benefits of digital banking. They aim to provide their customers with all the services of a traditional brick-and-mortar bank, only virtually. No, they aren’t building robot bankers. One thing hasn’t changed, and they know it: the importance of having a personal relationship with your banker. You can expect customer service and support from real humans who know your name and know your law firm.
Nota by M&T Bank is a technology-driven, free, cloud-based IOTA management and banking services provider explicitly designed for solo practitioners and small law firms. They have invested in the design and user experience of Nota by working directly with solo and small firm lawyers. They listened to their customers and built integrations with popular services like QuickBooks Online, LawPay, and Clio. They realize that being part of an ecosystem of tools and services that work together would help lawyers reduce risk, be more efficient, and deliver superlative client service. Plus, you might just sleep a little better. We all know how stressful the practice of law can be. And we all know how stressful technology can be - but there are many ways we can use tech to reduce stress, not create it!

To find out more about digital banking or how fintech can make managing your law practice easier and more efficient, sign up for a 30-minute demo with FAWL’s attorney banker, Joe Amendola: https://bit.ly/NotaDemoWithJoe.  

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Nota is a product/service offered by M&T Bank and is available to attorneys whose offices and practices are in NY, NJ, MD, PA, DE, CT, VA, DC, FL, or WV. IOLTA accounts held by lawyers in these states must be subject to applicable state rules and regulations. The advertised product/services and their features and availability are subject to change without notice at any time. Use of the product/service is subject to and governed by certain terms, conditions, and agreements required by M&T Bank.
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