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Law Firm Teams with IBM to Help Veterans Get Benefits Faster while Increasing Revenue by 80 Percent

Veteran Claims Now Filed 66 Percent Faster

ARMONK, N.Y. & FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida - 18 Oct 2011: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg is using IBM social software and analytics capabilities to analyze and file claims for veterans 66 percent faster, resulting in quicker access to the much needed aid. As part of the company's evolution into a social business, the law offices chose IBM social software over Microsoft software to more than double its client base, resulting in increased gross revenues by 80 percent.

Located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, LaVan & Neidenberg serves 20,000 veteran and Social Security clients, specializing in disability compensation and long-term disability cases. Like many small and midsized businesses, the firm places a greater emphasis on innovative technology to drive profitability and ensure competitiveness in the market while contending with limited resources. 

Today, the number of veterans filing disability claims continues to rise (1), so the firm needed a better way to keep up with mounting paperwork to file claims. Data was previously stored on disparate systems resulting in delays for processing customers, including organizing the information for full qualification and pulling it together to submit to the appropriate set of agencies.  

This time-consuming manual process hindered the firm's ability to analyze and respond to benefits claims within an acceptable period of time sometimes taking months. Veterans often cannot afford to spend months awaiting the arrival of a check in the mail. 

Now, all critical information needed to access and file a claim is available in one place with a simple click of the mouse. Instead of spending hours sifting through paperwork and digging through a client's paper file, the firm's employees can apply analytics and share information instantly and collaborate with each other and external agencies including the Office of Veterans Affairs to gain access to pertinent information such as the status of a claim.

"Each of our clients have about 40 documents associated with their claims," said Ken LaVan, President of the Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg.  "We needed to both effectively manage this data and move it along quickly in the approval process. IBM social software has enabled us to automate much of the claims process, including submissions to the government, agency assignments and email notifications." 

IBM business partner Group Business Software (GBS) created a comprehensive and easy to use social business solution for the law firm that gives them access to instant messaging, email, collaboration tools and a free desktop productivity suite for word processing, spreadsheets and presentation creation. This new solution helps the employees to quickly and easily enter, analyze, approve, track, submit, file and review all data and documents. 

Social Business and Analytics Bring New Efficiencies and Increased Revenue 

As a result of choosing IBM social software in the company's evolution into a social business, the law firm has experienced an 80 percent increase in revenue, while significantly improving service to veterans. Claims are now filed 66 percent faster. The new software has also reduced time required to fill out and submit government forms by 35 percent and reduced failed applications because of the process length by 25 percent. These new efficiencies are paying off for LaVan & Neidenberg. It's increased its client base by 61 percent -- growing from 6,500 clients in 2009 to 10,500 clients in 2010. 

Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg

LaVan & Neidenberg is using an IBM software solution that provides sophisticated workflows, enabling law firm employees to pick and choose areas of a veteran's claim to focus on.

LaVan & Neidenberg can now instantly track all the data associated with a claim such as contact information, job history, military service, injuries, filing dates and court appearances, if necessary, as well as manage all the documents associated with the individual. 

With sophisticated workflows and built-in analytics intelligence, the new solution helps ensure timely aid for veterans and people with disabilities. Many of the views in the solution, including client name, medical history and claim status, are configurable, enabling employees to pick and choose areas of the claim to focus on. For example, if a claim has been pending for a significant period of time, the law firm can quickly and easily determine what may be causing the delay by having a clear, configurable view into the client's case. 

IBM business partner Group Business Software, majority owned by GBS Enterprises Inc. (OTCBB: GBSX), created the solution for the law firm that integrates IBM Lotus Notes and Domino, IBM Symphony free desktop productivity suite, and IBM Sametime instant messaging software. 

For more information about the Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg, please visit: http://www.disabilitylawclaims.com/ 

For more information about IBM social software, please visit www.ibm.com/software/lotus 

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Sources:

(1)   NPR: VA Officials Try to Ease Disability Exam Backlog. April 8, 2011. http://www.npr.org/2011/04/08/135218770/va-officials-try-to-ease-disability-exam-backlog

Contact(s) information

Hanna Smigala
IBM Media Relations
720-342-5343
smigala@us.ibm.com

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LaVan & Neidenberg is using an IBM software solution that provides sophisticated workflows, enabling law firm employees to pick and choose areas of a veteran's claim to focus on.

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