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Posted April 9, 2015

Helping Novack and Macey make their mark: a branded web app for attorneys litigating in Illinois courts

It may be obvious to some, but certainly not to everyone: You can’t expect all attorneys to be expert in the nuances of Illinois law (or, more technically, “pretrial rules and code provisions”). Some Illinois attorneys are simply not expert litigators. Some attorneys come from other states to argue in unfamiliar Illinois courts on behalf of their clients.

So if you happened to be one of Illinois’s premier commercial litigation firms — expert in Illinois rules — what would you do with your hard-won expertise? The clever folks at Novack and Macey have decided to share the wealth of their knowledge, for free.

Firm partners Andrew Campbell and Christopher Moore approached us last year with this groundbreaking idea. They asked if it were possible to create a fast, user-friendly, touch-driven web app that would organize over 160 frequently used code provisions and rules.

They told us that attorneys preparing for trial were routinely faced with a Sisyphean task: scouring huge print editions of both the Illinois Supreme Court Rules and the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure to find what they need. Worse, that sort of research was completely impractical once inside the courtroom.

This observation posed another challenge. Could the web app be designed to be fully functional even in the courtroom, which may not include internet access? Competitively speaking, that would make the app a must-have for all attorneys working in Illinois courts. (Who could afford not to have downloaded the free app before walking into trial?)

These are the sorts of challenges — and ingenious branding breakthroughs — that we love at Jell. And it was great working with Campbell and Moore, who displayed that rare combination of brand vision, subject matter expertise, and commitment to following a difficult project through to perfection.

We quietly launched the Illinois Rules Finder in late February 2015, allowing the app a brief, low-volume test period. Today we’re pleased to announce that this “quiet period” is history. The project has now been spotlighted in an interview with Campbell and Moore in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. (You can view a PDF of the story here.)

We’re eager to see the app’s adoption by the entire community of litigators working in Illinois — and to track the resulting rise in our client’s brand recognition. After all, Novack and Macey has often been hired by out-of-state firms to assist in difficult cases in the past. We expect the growing popularity of the branded app to increase calls for those engagements.