Ebundle help for Litigants in Person

Ebundle help for Litigants in Person


Ebundling help for Litigants in Person

Creating an electronic bundle of documents may be a complicated enough process for legal professionals but for Litigants in Person who have little or no knowledge of the legal process, it can be daunting, to say the least.  On this page, we outline best practice, give you templates to help you be organised and help you create a bundle in the most efficient way.

Organise your bundle documents

All of your documents must be in a digital format so if you have any paper versions these must be converted first.  You can do this by scanning your documents at home if you have a scanner, or take them to a local print shop who may help you.  Alternatively, use your smartphone for which there are many scanning apps.

Each of your documents must be separated.  If you have multiple documents combined in one PDF that you wish to appear as separate items in your index, these documents will need to be separated out.  We can help you with that but it will take us extra time to do that task.

Create an Index of Documents to itemise your bundle contents

The best help for Litigant in Person, or anyone who needs to create a bundle, is to first create a list of documents.   Typing up an index will help you be organised and it will help us because we can then see the names of the items and the order that you wish them to appear.

Click here to download a template which you can use to type up your index.

Naming your document files

It is really helpful to give your documents a short name and limit the length to 40 characters.  This is where your index of documents becomes really helpful to you and to us.  By using referencing the document number from the index and using that number in your document name, you can give your document a short name and know that we will be able to identify it.

Note: long file names may cause corruption issues in documents.  Computer applications can’t read very long files names and the documents will not be imported into your bundle correctly.

Send your bundle documents to us

Once you have your index prepared, send that to us, along with all of your bundle documents.  There are many ways to send digital documents and the most common is by email.  However, if you have a large number of documents it may be easier to use a free facility like https://wetransfer.com.  This facility will ask you to upload all of your documents in one go and will send us a link so that we can download them.

If you have many sections in your documents, you may want to consider creating sub-folders to organise your files.  WeTransfer will let you upload and send whole folders at a time.

Check compatibility and conversion issues

Modern day computing is supposed to be easy but that doesn’t mean it’s intuitive to use.  Sometimes, problems occur when converting documents, sometimes documents are protected and have security placed on them.  There can be any number of reasons why we may receive a document that cannot be opened or imported into a bundle.

It is your responsibility to check your documents. After all, you intimately know your documents and we do not.  We will help you as much as we can but without receiving a working document there is little we can do.

Time and costs to prepare you bundle

When you invest your time early on to prepare an index of documents, this will save us time, and you the cost of our time, when it comes to bundling your documents.

We can typically process around 20 documents per hour into a bundle.  If there are combined documents, security or compatibility issues, then this may take a while longer.  Once we receive your documents and your index we can give you a more accurate quote.

Our prices are listed here and the minimum charge for a small bundle is £85 plus VAT.

Turnaround time to produce a finalised bundle

Your deadline to submit your bundle is dictated by the court’s order.  For a small bundle we try our best to deliver a same day turnaround but this may not be possible if there are any problems with the documents or if it contains a very large number of files.

You may also need to add documents from your opponent, or have your legal advisers check your bundle.  Please take all of this into account and give yourself plenty of time to submit your bundle.

Contact us if you have any other questions that are not answered here.

Top 5 Apps for Microsoft Teams

Top 5 Apps for Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams … our top 5 apps

Teams is more than video and voice calling, it’s more than instant messaging.  It is meant to be used as an office collaboration space, where your team/staff share access to information relevant to their roles and responsibilities.  There are many apps and features in Teams which are little known or under-used.

Because Bluebird is a wholly digital business (we don’t print, don’t have offices, use only digital technology to communicate and process our client work) we are often asked how we managed to achieve this.  It all starts with good use of technology.  We use Microsoft 365 and the ‘office platform’ is Teams.  This article explains a little more and suggests our Top 5 apps.  Get your download for Microsoft Teams here


Organising your information links and business processes is so much easier when using Channels.  Rather than creating multiple Teams sites, split out your Team information by adding a Channel.  You can add any apps and set permissions to the Channel and it makes for easier navigation for your team.


Probably the most underrated and under-used app, Wiki is a really easy way of adding indexed text to your Teams site.  We use Wiki for adding a Knowledge Base learning materials, client handover notes, onboarding process notes.  It’s quick and easy to type your text and adding links to your SharePoint documents means your team will always have that ‘just in time’ point of reference right within Teams.

SharePoint document libraries

Typical of Microsoft, there’s always multiple ways of accessing your data.  Think of SharePoint as your data container and Teams as your user interface.  Rather than browse the web, or use Windows File Explorer, you can add your document libraries to Teams for quick and easy access.


As much as we all ‘live’ in Outlook, it’s incredibly useful to create separate calendars that can pool your teams availability.  We have a separate calendar for holidays so everyone can easily check who is in/out at a glance.


Working on projects?  This app can be added to your Teams site to help you organise projects.  Tasks can be assigned to team members with extra functionality of adding documents, notes, status updates.

There’s so much more that Teams can do for you and your team and if you would like a chat about your specific requirements get in touch.   Read here about more ways of improving efficiency with Microsoft 365.

How outsourcing works with Speechwrite 360

How outsourcing works with Speechwrite 360

Speechwrite 360 digital dictation system with outsourcing

Using a cloud digital dictation system has so many benefits, to name a few:

  • secure cloud hosted takes away the pain of managing security;
  • it’s always available and it doesn’t need to be installed on your network infrastructure because it’s in the cloud;
  • fully supported system means you have help with any issues you may come across;
  • it’s easy to set up and use;
  • dictation and workflow system across multiple devices and platforms to suit all of your team;
  • there’s built-in outsourcing transcription and speech recognition if you choose to use it.

Workflow can be designed to route dictations and tasks internally to your secretaries but did you know you can also route them to an outsourced team?

Think of Bluebird as attached to your system, and we access only that work you choose to send to us.  Choosing where to send your work (internal or outsource) happens with a click of a button on an app.

The smart way of working with Speechwrite is to create workflow transcription routes.  Here are some examples of how work can be routed once your dictation has been typed.

The simplest route is the author sends dictation, the secretary types it up, and the completed task shows as completed to the author.

But, if you have internal staff, you can route your outsourced typing back to them by using an ‘approval’ stage.  Your internal team can process any tasks and admin before completing the task for the author in the system.

Did you know that your completed documents can also be attached to the task in the dictation system?  This keeps all of your work secure; you can easily track and audit tasks, and all of your information is visible on your desktop browser version of Speechwrite.

How to use Speechwrite outsourcing

  1. Contact Speechwrite support to have your dictation system configured for outsourcing.
  2. Decide which authors will be using outsourcing and how they will receive their completed work back.
  3. Send copies of your templates to Bluebird so that we can type into your format – or consider granting access to your office systems so your outsource team can work as your internal secretaries.
  4. Once the Speechwrite dictation system is configured, ask your authors to send a test dictation to check everything works as it should.

It is that easy!

If you want to learn more about which dictation systems to use, read here.  Or, contact us if you have any questions.

7 ways formatting documents by a specialist can help you

7 ways formatting documents by a specialist can help you

7 Ways formatting by a document specialist can help your business

Creating formatted documents needs a specialist: from brochure to proposal, order form to invoice, internal admin and client reports, to name just a few examples.  The document lifecycle is improved with smart formatting.  Here are 7 ways how a document specialist can help you.

Formatting fillable forms in your PDF

Collecting information from your customers is easier by using a PDF form.  PDF (portable document format) works on all of your recipients’ devices and so they don’t need to print/scan.  Unless you are collaborating on editing a document, you should always send a PDF.  Remember, not all of your recipients will have Word (or similar editor) installed on a phone, tablet or a PC.  A document specialist will reformat your text and convert to PDF and will then use Adobe Pro to create your fillable form.

Sending documents for e-signature

The natural progression from creating a fillable PDF is to ask for e-signatures.  There are many products that offer e-signature and many different features available.  Some things to consider:

  • Do you need a secure verification of the recipient signature?
  • Do you require a lot of signatures each month? If so, consider a product that offers some integration with your business systems.
  • How many people in your business are asking for signatures? Cost, training, integration with systems will have an impact on your decision on which product to choose.

Switching to e-signatures is easy and the benefits to you and your clients and customers is huge!

Formatting standard document precedents

Are you using the same documents over and over again?  Or are you copy and pasting similar paragraphs?  Creating a standard template document will save you tons of time and give you consistency and ease of use.  A professional suite of documents will not only make you look great but save you time.  A document specialist will always create a base template which takes into account your house style (your branding) and use styles so that formatting documents is quick and easy.

Automation of your numbering, cross references, table of contents: document specialist skills

Your documents should have easy-to-use automatic numbering, automatic cross references and tables of contents (where applicable).  All word-processing features are designed to save you time. If you’re collaborating with your documents – that is more than one person is involved in editing – then you should invest your time to make it easy for all parties involved.  A professional document specialist can fix your formatting for you.

Version control, track changes, document protection

HR documents, policy documents, operations manuals all have one thing in common.  They are strictly controlled and should contain version and editing notes.  A document specialist can ensure that your documents contain a version control cover sheet, the document is protected (read only often helps), and any changes can be shown in track changes.

Converting from PDF

Whilst some versions of a PDF document will allow a conversion to a Word document, it often doesn’t retain the word-processing formatting.  Having an editable text version of a document is one thing, making is easy-to-use is another.  The correct formatting is essential when converting PDF documents.  Without it, automatic numbering and cross refencing won’t work and inserting track changes and comments become difficult.  A professional document specialist can quickly convert and re-format your document so you have a usable version.

Comparing documents: not necessarily a document specialist role, but …

Did you know that you can compare two versions of a Word document and the result will show the differences in track changes?  It’s a useful feature used by many lawyers and there are plenty of Word training courses out there to learn how to do it yourself.  But if you don’t want to learn the skills then a document specialist will run the comparison for you and it takes just 10 minutes to do.

Quick and easy document formatting

The most common phrases in this article should be document specialist, document formatting, quick and easy.  Never struggle with a document because the chances are we can quickly fix it for you.  We operate on a pay-per-document basis so please get in touch if you would like a quote on a particular document.

The new way to hire a temp legal secretary

The new way to hire a temp legal secretary

Finding a short-term legal temp

Short-term legal temps are used to cover holidays, sickness or sudden absence, and it’s still very common for law firms to employ temporary legal secretaries.  What’s becoming increasing difficult, however, is finding an agency that manages temps.  Finding a great legal secretary who can immediately jump into your business and be productive can be harder.

Temporary positions are usually offered for longer term cover for, eg maternity leave.  Finding a legal temp to attend your office for a week or two-week assignment isn’t easy.

Why temp legal secretaries are helpful

Nobody likes to return to work after a holiday to a huge backlog of work, neither is it helpful for your clients to have to wait for responses. If matters become urgent then stress just builds up and continuity of service is essential for good customer service.  Having a business continuity plan is also required by the SRA, legal practictioners’ regulator.  Having a temp legal secretarial service gives you both service continuity and a back-up plan.

What’s different about the new way of using temps?

Instead of asking for a legal temp secretary to attend your office to work, it’s now possible to ask for a service to connect to your office systems.

There is a remarkable change in attitude since pandemic to allow external suppliers to connect to office systems.  Where previously, concerns about IT and people security, the ability of workers to be remote and productive, and the naturally cautious mindset of lawyers would prevent the cultural shift that has and is now happening.

Outsourcing could almost be re-defined to insourcing as assigning tasks and projects across teams and departments is easier to do with technology.  An external supplier, connected to your office systems, looks and behaves the same as your internal team.

You have all the benefits of a temp on tap, but without the need to reinvent the wheel with regards to onboarding, training, and supervision.

What you need to do to make the most of a remote temp legal secretary

Each practice varies slight with different technologies, culturally how PAs and secretaries are used and, of course, the workflow. Here are the questions to answer when you’re onboarding a new temp legal secretary service.

  1. Can your secretaries already work from home remotely?
  2. Which digital dictation system do you use?
  3. Can you easily send out dictations, or would it be easier for a secretary to connect to use your system remotely?
  4. Would you like your temp legal secretaries to access your case management system?
  5. Or, would you be happier to receive completed work back as an attachment to email?

Building a knowledge base about you

When you use a service, rather than contract directly with a temp, information is collated, training packs are designed and used to train a team who will work for you.  The service removes the need for you to have to train and supervise each time you have a new joiner in your business.

So when you have a sudden absence, your back up service has you covered.  When you have busy work periods, your back up service can help you meet demands.

Contact us if you would like to learn more about how easy it can be to set up a reliable service.

Large Electronic Bundle Award Winner

Large Electronic Bundle Award Winner

Legal Innovation Award Winner for Largest Electronic Bundle

The annual award scheme, organised by Zylpha, recognises legal practices that have demonstrated innovative solutions and working practices over the previous 12 months.  There were five legal innovation award categories.

Bluebird won the category “Bundle of the Year 2022” to recognise the largest electronic bundle produced.

Innovation in E-bundling Services

At client requests to provide a resource, we quickly learnt that bundling documents is not a daily task.  Bundling is needed ad hoc and dependent on the progress of a client’s case.  We designed a flexible resource for our clients to tap into when they need it.  We adapted our existing cloud technologies and partnered with Zylpha for e-bundling.

Why an award for the largest electronic bundle?

If you can imagine organising, photocopying and bundling 4,500 individual documents consisting of around half a million pages, then you will see that it’s no easy feat.  The only difference between the paper  and electronic version of the large bundle is physical space.

It takes a lot of organisational effort and time to collate the documents in the required order.  Having reliable technology is essential to produce the bundle for the court’s requirements.  Managing electronic files needs a significant attention to detail and very clear processes to prevent errors.  The large electronic bundle consisted of 26 separate PDF files which, between them, contained 4,500 individual documents (around half a million pages).

Although the documents to be bundled were very well organised, the documents themselves were complex in that they had embedded plans and bibles which meant lot of megabytes and compression to reduce the file size.

A team effort for managing the large electronic bundle

Credit must be given to the legal teams and expert witnesses involved.  The index was very well organised, files were named in a structure easy to locate within SharePoint folders.  There were minimal missing documents and the legal teams were very quick with responses.  There must have been an inordinate amount of time spent in preparing the index alone.

What’s the difference between a large electronic bundle and a standard e-bundle?

The difference is the sheer volume of work involved.  Every client must have trust and confidence in us to manage their data.  We treat every piece of work as a high priority.  Whether it’s for a Litigant In Person or a huge multi-million dollar commercial dispute, for the individuals involved, it’s a stressful and high pressure task to meet very serious deadlines.  You can rely on us to treat you and your work with the utmost respect.