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January 09, 2017

Populate Contracts for New Clients in Clio

Using a legal practice management system like Clio can be a great way to streamline your practice.  From keeping track of clients, to managing all of your matters, Clio keeps your whole firm on the same page and working efficiently.

Another way to increase the efficiency of your firm is to automate your document creation with WebMerge.  Whether you need to populate intake forms, fill out government forms, or generate agreements, WebMerge makes the whole process simple and automated.

In this example, we’re going to show you how to automatically generate a contract for new matters that are added to Clio.  The contract will be populated with specific information about our client and then we’ll use HelloSign to collect our client’s signature.

To get started, we’re going to setup the template for our contract using a Word document.  Inside the Word document, we’re going to add our boilerplate contract info, then for the spots that we want to insert our customer/matter info, we’re going to use merge fields that look like {$Name}, {$Address}, etc.

Here’s what our contract template looks like:

Since we’ll be sending this document over to HelloSign for e-signature, we need to insert a signature tag so that HelloSign knows where to place the signature.  This tag is just like any other text in your document and looks like:  [sig|req|signer1]

Once the template is finished, we need to upload it to WebMerge.  From the Documents page in WebMerge click the New Document button and enter a name.  On the next step, pick Office Document as the document type and then pick the file from your computer.

After you’ve uploaded your template, you’ll be taken to the Settings tab where you can modify various settings like the type of file that is generated and the name of the file.  For this example, we’re going to generate a PDF and include the name of our client in the merged file name.

Next, we’re going to setup the delivery of our document so that it is automatically sent out for signature via HelloSign.  Under the Deliver tab, click the New Delivery button and then select HelloSign from the list. 
After you enter your HelloSign API Key, you’ll need to indicate the signer’s name/email address via merge fields (so it pulls data from Clio).

After you have saved your HelloSign delivery, we are done with the setup process in WebMerge and we’re ready to setup the integration with Clio.  To help with the integration, we’re going to use our friends over at Zapier.

Inside Zapier, create a new Zap and then for the Trigger, we’re going to choose Clio and New Matter as the trigger.

Once you authenticate your Clio account, Zapier is going to load a test matter to make sure that everything is working correctly.  Follow those steps.

Next, we need to pull in all the information about our client (in addition to the Matter info), so we’re going to add an action to our Zap to search for the client info.  Add a New Action (Search) and then pick Clio as the service and then Find Contact.  For the Query field, we’re going to use Client Name.

Next, we’re going to add the Action of our Zap to generate the document.  For the service, choose WebMerge and then Create Document Merge as the action.

After you authenticate your WebMerge account, Zapier will load a list of all the documents in your account.  Go ahead and pick the contract that you just setup and Zapier will load a list of all the merge fields in your template.

For each of the merge fields, you’ll need to pick the corresponding fields from Clio.  This tells Zapier how to send your data over to WebMerge so that it is populated in the correct spot on your template.

Once you have matched up all of your merge fields, go ahead and save your Zap the turn it on.  We’re ready for a test!  Login to Clio and add a new matter, then Zapier will take that information, send it over to WebMerge, and your contract will be sent to HelloSign.

Here’s what our contract looked like ready to sign:

Congrats, you’re finished!  You can now instantly generate all types of documents from your Clio account.  Can you think of any other ways you can use WebMerge to simplify your paperwork process?

7 min read

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