HotDocs

HotDocs Reviews

RATING:

4.05

(56)

User Review Highlights

Overall Rating

4.05

Ratings Breakdown

Secondary Ratings

Ease-of-use

3.5

Customer Support

3.5

Value for money

3.5

Functionality

4

  • icon"This product's integration with Microsoft Word is outstanding."
  • icon"Ease of use with other programs, customer service is very responsive, and documents look professional and clean."
  • icon"It's great that we can keep all of our companies needed documents on one software that is accessible to everyone at our Firm."
  • icon"I also don't like the storage on the local drive. If a user forgets to back up to the server we can lose information and have no record."
  • icon"The developers sold me on the product and disappeared after purchase."
  • icon"Don't make such an investment without considering that, in future years, you'll have no guarantee that you'll be able to renew your HotDocs substription on a basis that makes sense."

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Showing 1 - 25 of 56 reviews

User Profile

Gordon

Verified reviewer

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

3

February 2018

Outstanding document production, fair UI

Document automation saves time and reduces errors. I've found HotDocs to be extremely reliable, stable, and bug-free.

Pros

This product's integration with Microsoft Word is outstanding. It is a fantastic scripting tool for document generation. I've also prepared some documents in WordPerfect and it seems entirely capable with that as well.

Cons

Hands down, the data entry interview is crude at best. It is probably ok for a developer who has never worked with another UI, but the "automation" it provides comes at a steep price - loss of control. If you want truly professional user interfaces, you'll have to write the front-end in some other language, write an "answer file" HotDocs can understand (which is not hard, it is very basic XML) and then let HotDocs work its magic to assemble the language in Word. When used that way, HotDocs is very powerful and flexible. When used in its native UI, it is fairly inflexible.

Jason

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Law Practice

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

February 2019

TOO PRICEY -- In my opinion HotDocs priced themselves right out of the market

Love it, but not for the price they want you to pay. I have been using Hotdocs since around the mid-nineties and have seen the company change hands. The current "custodians" of Hotdocs have unfortunately missed the boat on pricing.

Pros

I can easily sell this program to anyone, and have in fact have turned several attorneys on to this program. It's a great way to automate your documents. It's logical. Is it complex? Sure it can be, but that gives the user a lot of options and makes it a powerful tool.

Cons

Cost prohibitive. For some reason HotDocs has elected to increase the price of HotDocs well beyond what they charged. From my understanding they want to have you pay a MONTHLY FEE where they used to just charge you a one time fee for the program. The price is too high for solo attorneys and small law firms. Bottom-line: Until Hotdocs can figure things out on the pricing, do not start using Hotdocs; there are other ways to get the same job done for cheaper, A LOT CHEAPER!

User Profile

Jay

Verified reviewer

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Law Practice

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

2

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

2

FUNCTIONALITY

2

June 2020

Gets the job done, quite overpriced, and does about 80% of what it should

Gets the job done, and is ultimately worth it if your time is very valuable. Very expensive, and clearly only going to get more so. The document sets available are decent, but not amazing.

Pros

Saves time, and is very commonly used (and therefore understood) outside of our office.

Cons

Very expensive, and requires re-entry of data already entered far too often. The actual coding in documents is surprisingly opaque, and converting existing document structures to a HotDocs format is exceptionally cumbersome. The existing form sets that are on top of HotDocs are useful, and the community is broad, but the quality is hit or miss.

Reasons for choosing HotDocs

Availability of forms and documents not found elsewhere, and the first mover advantage: HotDocs seemed to have broad penetration in the legal community over a decade ago. It is a de facto standard, and they are engaged in monopolistic rent-seeking behavior to take advantage of the situation.

Jonathan

Verified reviewer

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Legal Services

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2018

Great software, but still needs to improve

It's really the best software out there for what it does. It just still seems behind the times in terms of connectivity, componentization, and still no HiDPI support.

Pros

It is extremely flexible and can help you craft just about any document that you want. I prefer the desktop version to the cloud version. It just works every time!

Cons

I feel that HotDocs has been stagnating recently. Here are some things that they need to address: *Easy import/export of answer data to other formats. For example, if I use some other tool such as an online form, it should have the ability to import that data into an answer file. *It still doesn't support Hi-DPI displays. *It would be great it if could be more flexible in the storage of answer data. The ability to componentize the fields/answer data would be wonderful. As it stands, each template is limited to only one component file.

Anonymous

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

February 2018

Overall, it's a helpful tool for drafting my documents.

Ease in drafting documents... biggest value for me. A lot of my practice is tailoring forms to my clients needs and wishes, and having the basic form available in HotDocs is a big help.

Pros

I enjoy being able to address both areas of my legal practice in the same program. I do not need to switch if I am creating for my client both estate planning documents and business transaction documents.

Cons

Most challenging is learning how to create new Hot Doc templates. Maybe I'm too busy in my legal practice, but I do not have time to devote to learning the ins and outs, and therefore am forced to pay an admin person to create any new forms I'd like. If it were more user intuitive, I know I would have MANY more documents created under the software and get even more productivity out of the program.

Anonymous

Company size: 501-1,000 employees

Time used: Less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

3

February 2018

HotDocs is very easy to use and super affordable.

saving time and money

Pros

The software is very user friendly and easy to figure out. I definitely do not have a developer background, but have been able to teach myself how to architect documents in HotDocs. It was almost impossible to figure out how to architect documents in our previous software without support from our IT department.

Cons

The user interface could use an update... it often feels as though we are using old technology.

Jared

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Law Practice

Time used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

July 2020

Great product for automating standard legal forms.

Overall, a very good and versatile experience. You will want to have experience in higher-level logic and computer coding language in order to make full use of the features HotDocs provides (or hire a consultant who can do the programming for you).

Pros

Product provides enough features and flexibility to customize almost any type of form.

Cons

The web-based version of the product is probably still in its early stages of development. This shouldn't discourage you from using it. The program has a bright future and there the potential gains in efficiency and form robustness are worth it.

Santino

Company size: 1,001-5,000 employees

Industry: Education Management

Time used: Less than 6 months

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

4

FUNCTIONALITY

3

May 2022

HotDocs Review

Pros

A good document management platform that was recommended by students studying law. The cloud version has progressively become better. The software is very easy to navigate and a little exploration with the functions goes a long way.

Cons

The platform is still behind competitors when it boils down to its overall presentation and cloud functions.

User Profile

David

Verified reviewer

Time used: Less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

February 2018

Good functionality, and once implemented, easy to use

Pros

Allows a certain amount of flexibility with master documents while having a fairly low learning curve on the user side.

Cons

Software coding functionality within the word documents can be cumbersome to implement. It can be hard to go down certain logic paths without a lot of workaround.

Anonymous

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

3

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

3

March 2018

I use it with Wealth Counsel and it works seemlessly

Pros

I love the integration with Wealth Counsel and the customization that it allows with the word documents I produce for estate plans.

Cons

Navigating the menus can be difficult. However, I use them so infrequently that this may just be a function of my lack of use.

Gene

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Legal Services

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

The obvious choice for professional users

While we use HotDocs ourselves, and have since 2012, our main use of HotDocs is now on behalf of our customers, who are mainly lawyers (in firms or in-house legal teams). As noted above, we find it is an extremely powerful document automation tool, which can be used on almost any forms of document. We've had good support from our key contacts at HotDocs, and after 4 years with LawHawk (and having recently upgraded to the new HotDocs Author/Advance product range) I remain very happy with the solution. The overall time savings (75%+) and quality improvements that you can expect to get every time are substantial, and one of our customers won a 2019 IACCM Asia Pacific Award for Operational Improvement as a result of their HotDocs automation project. Because it is a very established product, with a lot of written guidance and a large user community, it's very easy to work out in advance what can be done and how best to do it.

Pros

I think HotDocs is THE choice to use when you need to prepare more complex legal documents, particularly in packages. We are lawyers who specialise in automating documents for other law firms in areas like loan and security documents, share sale agreements, and complex wills and estates. We really haven't found anything we can't do with HotDocs, but we know that most (if not all) of the other document automation tools we've looked at, and sometimes use for simpler work, couldn't do the job at the high end. While a lot of focus is on the actual document creation aspect, we also really like the ability to build organisational compliance and training into the interview questionnaires.

Cons

The biggest issue with HotDocs is the annual per user licensing model, which restricts the ability to use HotDocs in situations where you have a lot of POTENTIAL users, who may only need to use it occasionally. It also stops people from starting to use it when they don't know how large the benefits will be. I would love to see a more flexible licensing model that allowed people to get started using HotDocs, because they would love it, and would quickly see many more uses. With a more scalable licensing model, I think millions more people would use it. The ability to collaborate with others (e.g. via client interviews) would be a great help. I'd also like to see more easy - out of the box - integration with other systems, particularly Office 365.

Reasons for choosing HotDocs

I've been involved in document automation projects as a lawyer since 2000, most of them going nowhere because we were trying to automate without a specialist document automation software. What we learned - the hard way - is that the additional costs of HotDocs are minor compared to the substantial costs (mostly in lost time or having the effectiveness of a key business process limited bythe capability of the technology) trying to automate with a weaker solution. Applied to the right documents the ROI is substantial, and for lawyers or other document creators that need to be able to operate at a level of complexity, you need a tool that can scale up to that level which a lot of the simpler tools can't do.

Anonymous

Company size: 1 employee

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

December 2018

Great software, but beware of new owner's year-to-year subscription pricing.

Pros

I've used HotDocs in my law practice for more than 10 years. Love it. Very powerful. The more time you invest using it, the more you'll appreciate its many features and the better your templates will become.

Cons

My only warning concerns the new year-to-year subscription pricing requirement. How does that make sense for this kind of software? The software becomes helpful only after you make your own serious upfront investment of time to build HotDocs "templates". Without that investment, HotDocs will do nothing for you. Don't make such an investment without considering that, in future years, you'll have no guarantee that you'll be able to renew your HotDocs substription on a basis that makes sense. And without yearly renewals, you'll forfeit your own upfront investment of time in templates. But for the pricing scheme adopted by HotDoc's new owner, AbacusNext, I'd give HotDocs an overall rating of 5 out of 5. However, as it stands now, I suggest you look at other software. Perhaps XpressDox. Or, for less ambitious automation projects, consider TheFormTool or Pathagorus.

Kristy

Company size: 501-1,000 employees

Industry: Legal Services

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

October 2018

HotDocs Developer 11 - Ease of Use

I have been working in HotDocs for the past 11 years, as a user and a coder. To be able to use this program to assemble our documents saves an incredible amount of time. I have had to enter in repetitive information on a set of 25 documents many times over the years, but being able to use HotDocs has been a great improvement and a fantastic time saver. Over the years, I have been able to increase the amount of client documents used through HotDocs and gained the interest of several other departments.

Pros

Our firm works on a vast amount of forms that are specific to our individual clients needs - these are not fill-in forms, but documents ranging from 1 single page to 100+ pages. We use a sometimes complicated Answer File whereby HotDocs lets us quickly assemble a single document or multiple documents - I sometimes do 20 or more documents at a time. The amount of time that is saved being able to use HotDocs for this document assembly process is phenomenal.

Cons

If the answer to a variable is not readily available some end-users would like there to be a prompt on the draft document indicating what fields/questions have been left blank. For the person filling in the answer file those unanswered questions are known at the end of the answer file, but after assembly these documents are passed on for further editing and review and a reminder of what information was not available at the time of assembly would be helpful.

Lois

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Law Practice

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

3

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

3

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2018

Practicing Family Law with HotDocs makes a world of difference.

Creating motions, petitions, orders, briefs, and so much more is easy with HotDocs. It would be difficult for us to practice Family Law without it!

Pros

We've been using HotDocs for almost 15 years. We have an enormous amount of time invested in the creation and updating of hundreds of HotDocs templates that help us create a huge variety of critical documents. The product is extremely powerful and flexible.

Cons

The least likable factor about HotDocs is that it has become so expensive over the years.The basic program hasn't changed a lot since then but the cost has become exorbitant. We've been through several changes of HotDocs ownership over the years and the one thing I can count on is that the cost will go up every time. I think you could sell a lot more firms on this product if using it weren't so expensive.

Mark

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2018

HotDocs is easily one of my top 10 successes in 25 years of working in legal I.T.

Great efficiency.

Pros

HotDocs saves us a lot of time drafting complex documents. The software is well-written, and reliable. It is highly cost-effective.

Cons

HotDocs requires a time investment on the front end, wherein the document construction process must be formally defined and articulated. (To be sure, this task would be common to any effort or tool to automate the construction of complex documents.) HotDocs also requires a fair amount of care and feeding, but not so much because the product requires it but rather because of the base documents and the process change. I recommend that any customer find a HotDocs partner that can assist with building and maintaining the workflows, and base documents.

Michael

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Legal Services

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

November 2016

Best Product for Document Automation

The quintessential software for document automation. One of the best software (if not the best) for this purpose. It can take some time to learn all the available features to use in document creation but once start to understand the basics then you can start to unlock the true potential for this software. Very robust and the possibilities are endless. Generating documents and pleadings now take a fraction of the time they normally would using any other software. I highly recommend this product.

Pros

Huge time saver Generate documents in fractions of the time

Cons

Takes time to create templates Must have extensive knowledge of word Take time to learn how to use the software

Jeffrey

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Legal Services

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

1

FUNCTIONALITY

2

March 2019

Very dissatisfied.

Due to the pricing changes, I am left with the decision to abandon hundreds, if not thousands, of hours of my time because the new owners have priced me out of the continued use of software I have already paid for.

Pros

I used this software for years and put a lot of time and effort into the program. There were no subscriptions. You paid for the software and it was yours. I did pay for an upgrade to HotDocs 11.

Cons

Now that the company's pricing has changed, I was told that I would have to purchase a new monthly, per user subscription to re-install what I already paid for onto a new computer that replaced my old one.

Bruce

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Law Practice

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT