What is HotDocs and why is it relevant to LawHawk?

HotDocs is the market leading provider of document automation software, with more than 1m users in 11,000 organisations around the world.  LawHawk uses the HotDocs platform for its powerful automation, so that we can focus on quickly and cost-effectively creating benefits from document automation.

Do I have to be a lawyer to use LawHawk?

No, you don't have to be a lawyer, but you may not find some of the LawHawk Documents as easy to use as a lawyer would, because the interviews have been written mainly for use by lawyers, in terms and legal concepts that will be familiar to them. 

LawHawk can custom automate your own documents so they can easily be used by non-lawyers.  Get in touch if you'd like to talk about this option.

If you aren't an experienced lawyer, and the document has not been specifically designed for use by non-lawyers, LawHawk will always recommend that you get any legal document you generate reviewed by an experienced lawyer - ideally one who is familiar with LawHawk documents so you are only paying for the final 10-20% of real value add.

What is a document interview?

A document interview is the questionnaire that you will fill in on your screen. Once you complete the interview, HotDocs assembles the final customised document from the template by merging the interview answers into the template text.

What is an answer file?

As you complete an interview to generate a document, you can save your answers into an answer file.  That answer file is really useful – it allows you to work even faster the next time you need to generate a similar document.  You can pre-load your earlier answers, and tweak them as required.

How can I access a document interview I've paid for?

Once you have paid for your document interview, you'll receive an email containing the links to your interview(s).  This might take up to 2 minutes to come through.  

If you have bought more than one document at a time, all the links will be in the one email, so make sure you keep it safe until you are done with all your interviews! 

If you have completed an interview, downloaded your document, and then decide that you need to make changes to some of your answers in the interview to re-generate the document, you do this from the same email.  Just click on the link within 24 hours of initially generating the document and you can re-do the interview.  To avoid re-entering all the earlier information in this case, make sure you upload your earlier answer file.

If we have custom automated a document for your own use, we can make the document interviews more easily available from your own private pages.

I'm having issues completing my interview - what help can I get?

To start with, look for the section at the top right of your interview screen that looks like the image below. 

Interview buttons

Click on the "Help" button, and see if any of the guidance there answers your question. There are also a lot of help videos which you can view here.

If you want to see how your answers are flowing into the document being built, you can view a preview by clicking on the button with the magnifying glass.

If you are still having problems, email lawhawk@lawhawk.nz, or call 04 889 0376 if it's urgent.  If you can take a screenshot that shows the problem you are having, and attach that to an email, it will assist in quickly identifying the issue.

Is the LawHawk system secure?

Yes. LawHawk's key suppliers have very good security. For more on HotDocs security, see here.  LawHawk's website host, eStaronline, are PCI DSS Level 1 compliant.

Do I need to install any local software?

No. LawHawk is delivered over the internet, so you don't need to install any local software.

Can documents be drafted in our own firm's style?

Our general LawHawk Documents cannot.  However, because the LawHawk documents use relatively few styles, it should be relatively simple for you to amend or replace the LawHawk styles with your own.

If we custom automate your own documents for you, they will look exactly as you want them to.  We do all our automation on top of your existing Word templates, so it is no difficulty at all to have your own font, numbering, logos and other customisations.

Can LawHawk integrate with our document management system and/or contracts database?

Yes. LawHawk generates documents in standard Microsoft Word format, which you can download directly into your environment. You can then save them into your document management system as you usually would.  Once the document has been finalised, you can also add it into your contracts database. 

Can LawHawk access my document or answers?

No, the LawHawk system has been designed with very high levels of security.  Your answers are completed within your own browser.  When you submit them for processing, they are sent securely to HotDocs' servers (which are on the Microsoft Azure platform) in Dublin.  They are processed for 1-2 seconds with no human involvement, and you can then download your document and answer file into your own environment.  Your information is not stored by HotDocs at all (even momentarily) and is only temporarily stored securely by our New Zealand based PCI DSS Level 1 security accredited website host, eStaronline, for the purpose of enabling download. Your information never comes to LawHawk at all.

What happens when I complete my interview?

Once you complete your interview, you will be prompted to download two files.  One is your document, in Microsoft Word format.  The other is your "Answer file".  The answer file is really valuable and should always be saved. The answer file will allow you to come back within 24 hours and make changes to your document without cost.  Later, if you are doing a similar or related document, and you want to re-use some of the earlier information, the answer file can be used for that too.

Where should I save my document and answer file?

You can save your document and answer file anywhere you like.  This could be as simple as your local drive, or if you are using some form of workflow system, you can save your files into that and manage them as you would any other documents.  You should make sure that you save them somewhere secure and where you can easily find them again.  Your answer files, in particular, may be incredibly valuable to you in future to save time on future interviews for similar or related documents, allowing you to pre-populate interviews with earlier answers.

Can I make changes to my document after I've downloaded it?

Yes.  Because it's a Microsoft Word document, you can make any changes you want without LawHawk involvement after it's downloaded.

If you review your document and decide that you've chosen the wrong option and that it would be easier to re-do the interview than to manually amend the downloaded document (e.g. you chose a one-way confidentiality agreement but realise you need a mutual agreement), you have 24 hours in which you can reload your interview, pre-populate your earlier answers from your answer file, make the necessary changes, and generate your document again. Please note that this allowance is only for amending the document for the single use you have paid for.  Using this allowance to generate additional documents for another transaction is a breach of our terms and conditions.  Additional documents must be paid for.

What is a User?

A User is a person who completes an interview and downloads a LawHawk Document.  It is an essential term of LawHawk’s agreement with HotDocs, and LawHawk’s Terms and Conditions that each User must have their own unique login and password, which must not be shared.

Can you give an indication of costs and timeframes to automate our own documents?

We really need to see the documents, and we can then give you a fixed price proposal, but in many cases the cost is similar to the fees law firms charge to generate similar documents each time they do one.

If you send us the documents we will review them without charge and give you a report setting out if they are suited for automation and, if so, proposing how we will do it, when we can do it by, how much it will cost, and what you can expect.  Any documents you send us will be kept confidential, and only used for the purpose of providing you our report and proposal.

Can I upload my own templates myself?

No, that is not possible at this stage.  We provide a fully managed service when we custom automate your documents, and will do this for you to make sure everything works as it needs to.  

Can anyone else use my own document templates?

Only if you want.  Your own document templates that we automate for you will be stored on a separate page that only you, and others you authorise, will have access to.