Enhanced New Cases Tool

The Enhanced New Cases Tool allows probono.net site members to subscribe to email alerts for new case notifications. It also includes new workflow for members to view the status of cases and review, accept and close case listings online.

Pro bono coordinators or others posting cases receive an email alert when a member chooses to review a case they have posted. The email contains the member's contact information to facilitate immediate follow up with the interested volunteer. The case poster also receives an email alert for other changes in their case status, described below. The tool also includes new administrative capabilities to customize associated email notifications and field labels, and manage and view the status of cases.

Read on for the following information:

To request that this tool be enabled or for a training session on the tool, please contact support@probono.net.

How A Prospective Volunteer Can Use the Application

Subscribe to New Cases
Members viewing the New Cases page will see a new Subscribe option in the upper right to subscribe via email to new case notifications. Any member subscribing to new case alerts will receive a digest email (summary of all new cases) posted in the previous 24 hour period. If no cases were posted for a 24 hour period no email will be sent.

New Case Subscription Form

The member's name and email address are pre-populated in the subscription form. When subscribing to alerts a member will be given the option to choose specific legal topics or locations (counties) to limit the notifications to. The member can return to this link anytime to edit their subscription settings.

View Case Status
On the New Cases page, the member can view a list of cases and the status of each. Available cases and cases which are Under Attorney Review are indicated by color-coded labels.

Case Status Indicators

Act on Available Cases
If the member is interested in the case, they can select a Review this case option in a new Case Management section of the case detail view. Clicking this button triggers three actions:

Case Management - Review this Case

  1. An automatic email notification is sent to the case poster with the reviewing member's name, organization/firm, phone number and email address, along with the case number, title, status and a link to the case listing.
  2. The case status on the New Cases page changes from Available to Under Attorney Review.
  3. In the Case Management section, two new options display to the reviewing member: Accept this Case or Return this case to open. In addition, a message will indicate how many days the member has to accept the case before it automatically reverts to open. The length of time is configurable by an admin and updates on the page dynamically. A member will also receive an email reminder, after a length of time set by an admin, reminding them to either accept or return the case.

After reviewing a case, a member can either Accept or Return the Case. If the member selects Accept this Case, an interim screen explains the responsibilities of accepting a case. This message is configurable by an admin.

Case Management - Accept or Return this Case

Accepting a case removes it from the New Cases page and site search, and triggers an email notification to the case poster. Returning the case to open will return the status to Available in the case listing for other members to act on.
Note: A case may be under review by only one member at once.

Accept Case Confirmation

Manage Cases and Alert Subscription Settings
Areas with the new Case Placement Application enabled contain two new features on the My Profile page.

My Profile Options

The Edit My Case Alerts link allows members to edit their case alert settings. The View My Pro Bono Cases function is a new console through which the member can view and update the status of cases they have taken action on.

My Case Console

Once a member accepts and completes the case, they can Close it. This updates the status of the case in their View My Pro Bono Cases console and triggers a status update email to the case poster. Members cannot return cases they have accepted to the available status. Only an admin can re-open accepted cases to return them the available case list for all members to see.

Additional Member Features
If a case under review by another member becomes available, any members whose subscription settings match this case will receive email notification that the case is now available.

Posting cases

There are two ways to add a case to your site.

1) Contact probono.net support to set-up an automatic integration between your instance of LegalServer and your Cases tool. Your Cases tool will automatically pull in for approval case information from LegalServer for posting to your site. 
2) Manually add a case via the Add a Case form.

If the Case Placement Application is enabled, several changes will be visible on the Add a Case form:

  • The Case Number field is now noted as optional
  • The Case Title field is now Legal Issue
  • The Description field indicates that posters should not include names or any other information that could identify the parties
  • The Expiration Date is now a blank but required field
  • When a City and State are entered, a pick-list displays to indicate the case's county
  • There is a new Reviewer section with a Case Status pick-list with four options: Open, Pending, Placed and Closed. An admin can manually change the status of a case using this list.
  • If an admin changes a case to a status other than Open, three "smart search" fields display to manually enter the reviewer's First Name, Last Name, and Email. This allows admins to associate a case with a site member who may have called or emailed the program directly about the case. An admin can also enter a non-member's contact information in this field for tracking purposes.
  • The Settings -> Status field is limited to three relevant statuses: Approved, Awaiting Approval and Deleted. More Info Request, Sent and Rejected no longer display.

The case poster will receive email notification when a member reviews, accepts or closes the case. As in the standard version of the New Cases Tool, cases may be posted by Geo Admins, Site Admins or New Cases Tool Admins, or submitted by non-admins for approval.

Customizing application settings and email alerts

If the Case Placement Application is enabled, Geo and Area admins have access to a new administrative console for the tool where they can customize many labels, email alerts and other settings associated with the tool. The administrative console is accessed via an Admin link on the upper right of the New Cases page.

The General Options section allows admin to configure settings such as the number of days before an email is sent to a member reminding them to accept or reject a case under review, the number of days before a case reverts to available, and the maximum number of cases a member can have under review at any time.

Note: The Administrator Email Address field allows admins to set a default sender address for all email notifications associated with the application.

General Options

The Case Tool and My Profile Labels section allow admins to customize text labels associated with the application, such as Review this case, Reject this Case, and View My Pro Bono Cases.

These fields are pre-populated with default entries when the application is enabled.

Case Tool Labels

Email Alerts
The admin console also allows admins to customize the sender address, subject line, and text of the email notifications associated with the application through an easily editable text area. These alert types are described in more detail below.

Customizing an Email Alert

Admin Configurable Email Alert Types
Note: Admin Configurable email alerts contain fields in brackets which are automatically populated by the system. Currently admins cannot manually add additional merge fields. However, other message text can be edited and added.

Subscriber Confirmation
Confirmation of the member's case subscription settings.
Member subscribing to case email alerts Member subscribes to case alerts or updates their subscription setting.
Subscriber Alert
A case is posted that matches the member's subscription.
Member subscribed with matching criteria Sent once a day as a daily digest. If no cases are posted with matching criteria, no email will be sent to the member.
Case Available Confirmation
A previously accepted case that matches the member's subscription becomes available.
Member subscribed with matching criteria Case is returned to available status.
Case Under Review
Notification to member upon review of a case. Includes case profile, contact information for the case contact, and the date the case will revert to open.
Member reviewing the case A member reviews a case.
Pending Reminder
Reminder to member to accept or return a case under review.
Member reviewing the case Configurable by admin in the General Options section.
Case Reverted to Open
Notification to member that a case they were reviewing has reverted to open.
Member reviewing the case A case under review reverts to open because the reviewer has not taken action on it.
Status Change
Notification to case poster that a member has taken action on a case they posted.
Case poster, as indicated by Contact Email on Add a Case Form A member reviews, accepts, returns, or closes a case.
Case Expiration
Notification to case poster that a case has expired. Includes case profile information, posting date, and expiration date.
Case poster, as indicated by Contact Email on Add a Case Form A case reaches the expiration date set on the Add a Case Form.
Alert Description Recipient(s) Trigger/Schedule

Non-Admin Configurable Email Alert Types

Weekly Case Summary Report
A weekly email report of the status of pending and accepted cases. Includes the case status, organization, case title, link to the case profile, and the member associated with the case.
Geo, Area, and New Cases Tool Admins. This is not sent to Tool Contributors Sent weekly each Sunday. If no cases are pending or placed, no email will be sent.

Admin Inbox and Admin Reporting Features

If the Case Placement Application has been enabled in an area, the New Cases section of the admin inbox contains new navigation options to filter and view cases by their placement status. In addition, the admin inbox view of Pending, Placed or Closed cases will show the associated member's name and email address, and the date the case was changed to that status. An admin can easily view a member's profile by clicking their name. Clicking the member's email address will open an email pre-addressed to the member in most email clients.

Admin Inbox Case Status View

Admins can also quickly view the status of each case, and members associated with cases, on the New Cases page itself. While the case status is anonymized for members viewing the page, the reviewer/casehandler's name will display for admins.

Admin View of Cases Page

If a case is pending, placed or closed, a new Reviewer section will display in the case editing form. This section also allows admins to manually change the status of a case and view/edit the associated member. An admin can also enter a non-member's contact information here for tracking purposes.

Reviewer Information in Case Form

Please note that now multiple people can review a case at the same time.