Immigration Software Knowledge Base

Still have questions? Contact us at (866) 852-2553 or team@docketwise.com.

What's the difference between a Smart Form and a PDF Form?

With Docketwise Immigration Software, you can prepare both Smarth Forms and PDF Forms on Docketwise. A Smart Form is an intelligent and dynamic interface that prepares complete cases, including all necessary government forms and addenda, based on answers to simple questions.

Here's what a Smart Form looks like:

Smart form overview

A PDF Form, on the other hand, is the regular old government form, prepopulated with all of your client's data so you don't have to start from scratch.

Here's what a PDF Form looks like:

Pdf form overview

How do I create a form?

To create a form, click the "Create New" button and select "Form". Choose the form that you want (at this point you'll choose between a Smart Form or a PDF Form).

Start form

How do I invite my client to a form?

Once you've chosen your form, the next step is choosing the contacts for your application. It's always a good idea to create your contacts before creating a form, but it's not necessary. If your contacts are already saved, make sure to select them from the dropdown to ensure that your form is prepopulated with all of their data. To invite your contacts (whether a client or some other party to the application), check the "Invite Client" box.

Invite client

You can keep track of your invites from the Invites column on your Forms tab. For each form, you will see the number of contacts invited. When you click on that number, you will also see which contacts have been invited and the status of each invitation. The different statuses include:

  • Sent: The invitation has been sent via email to your client.
  • Email Bounced: The invitation was not successfully delivered to your client, generally because of an incorrect email address or full inbox.
  • Accepted: Your client has clicked on the invitation and accessed your form.
  • Returned for Review: Your client has completed the form and submitted it to you for review.

You will also have the options here to resend an invitation or invite a new contact.

Manage invites

After you send an invite, your contact will receive an email inviting them to a secure portal where they will be able to access the entire form as a beautifully streamlined questionnaire. The email will come from you and will reply to your email address.

They can access the form on any desktop, laptop or mobile device. They will also receive their own login and dashboard where they can access all of their invitations.

Here's what your clients see:

Client perspective

How do Smart Forms work?

Smart Forms determine what to ask and how to prepare your case based on your, or your client's, answers to simple questions. Once your Smart Form is done, you'll be able to print your entire bundle of forms and addenda as a neat package.

Some Smart Forms, such as the I-130, only include that specific form plus any necessary addenda.

Others, such as the Family-Based Green Card, can include as many forms as is needed for your case. For example, if your answers indicate that you're preparing an adjustment of status case, it will include an I-485. If the petitioner is the beneficiary's spouse, an I-130A will be added.

It will even automatically calculate the income threshold for the Affidavit of Support based on your petitioner's number of household members and include I-864A's as needed. Pretty powerful stuff.

How do PDF Forms work?

The first time you open a PDF Form, it will prepopulate with all of your client's data.

From that point onward, changes to your client's data that are made to their Contact Questionnaire or a Smart Form will not be reflected in your PDF Form. This is to ensure that you're in complete control of your form and will not be surprised by changes that you're unaware of.

In addition, please note that information entered into a PDF Form will be saved to that specific PDF Form, but will not be saved to your records for that client for purposes of prepopulating subsequent forms (although this feature is coming soon).

For these reasons, it's important that you create a contact before creating a PDF Form, and update your information about each contact via the Contact Questionnaire or Smart Forms.

How do I create a Contact?

Create a contact by clicking the "Create New" button and then "Contact". You'll have the option to invite your contact to complete the questionnaire, or you can complete it yourself. Or both!

Create contact

Which forms are currently available?

Our forms cover the major immigration practice areas: Our forms cover the major immigration practice areas: AR-11, EOIR-26, EOIR-26A, EOIR-27, EOIR-28, EOIR-33/BIA, EOIR-42A, EOIR-42B, G-1145, G-28, G-28I, G-325A, G-639, I-129 (and supplements), I-129F, I-129S, I-130, I-130A, I-131, I-131A, I-134, I-192, I-290B, I-140, I-360, I-485, I-485A, I-485J, I-539, I-589, I-601, I-601A, I-730, I-751, I-765, I-765V, I-765WS, I-821, I-824, I-864, I-864A, I-864W, I-881, I-90, I-907, I-914, I-918, I-918 Supplement A, I-918 Supplement B, I-929, I-942 and N-400.

How do I customize the Contact Questionnaire?

Contact Questionnaires are intelligent intake forms you send your clients to collect all the basic information that you want on file for them. There’s a Contact Questionnaire for persons and a separate Contact Questionnaire for companies. All of the information that either you or your clients enter into a Contact Questionnaire is saved to your account and prepopulates into any subsequent forms that you create with Docketwise immigration software. You can even customize your Contact Questionnaires to ask the specific list of questions that you need for your practice. Watch the tutorial below to learn how.

 

How do I integrate Docketwise with Clio?

Our immigration software integrates with Clio so that you can keep your contacts and matters synced across both platforms. Once you have activated the integration, all of your contacts in Clio will automatically be migrated into Docketwise and vice versa. Thereafter, any time you create or edit a contact or matter in your immigration practice on Docketwise or in Clio, your changes will be reflected in both platforms.

In order to activate the integration:

  1. Click on your name in the top right corner of your dashboard
  2. Click on Account Settings
  3. Click on Activate Clio
  4. You're be prompted to login to Clio and allow Docketwise access to your account. Click on Allow Access when prompted.
  5. That's all! You'll receive an email shortly notifying you once your integration is fully setup.
Activate clio

How do I integrate Docketwise with PracticePanther?

Our immigration software integrates with PracticePanther so that you can keep your contacts and matters synced across both platforms. Once you have activated the integration, all of your contacts in PracticePanther will automatically be migrated into Docketwise and vice versa. Thereafter, any time you create or edit a contact or matter in your immigration practice on Docketwise or in PracticePanther, your changes will be reflected in both platforms. While updates from Docketwise to PracticePanther are immediate, updates going the other way can take an hour or so.

In order to activate the integration:

  1. Click on your name in the top right corner of your dashboard
  2. Click on Account Settings
  3. Click on Activate PracticePanther
  4. You're be prompted to login to PracticePanther and allow Docketwise access to your account. Click on Allow Access when prompted.
  5. That's all! You'll receive an email shortly notifying you once your integration is fully setup.

How do I track the status of my forms?

You can track the status of each form from the Status column in your Forms tab. By default, each form starts off as a To Do item. Once you've begun working on a form, you can update its status to Started, then mark it as In Review so you know which forms are awaiting your approval. Finally, mark it as Complete and celebrate a job well done. 👏

You can easily sort or filter your dashboard by a form's status so you can see what needs to be done at a glance. Update a form's status by following these steps:

  1. Select all of the forms you want to update
  2. Click the More Actions button
  3. Select Update the Status
  4. Select the appropriate status
  5. Click Update
Update status

Working with Matters

It's always a good idea to organize your work by matter so you can keep your practice organized. Each contact in your account can have an unlimited number of matters and each matter can have an unlimited number of forms.

In order to create a new matter, click Create New from your dashboard and choose a Matter.

Tasks and Tasklists

Managing your tasks and workflows is easy with Docketwise, even when you're collaborating with staffmembers.

You can create new tasks from your dashboard, contact page or matter page. Simply type your task and hit the enter key. By default, tasks are assigned to the user that creates them. However you can assign a task to any staffmember at your firm by adding the staffmember to your Docketwise account.

The most powerful feature of tasks is the ability to create reusable "tasklists".

To create a Tasklist, head over to your Account Settings and click "Create Reusable Tasklists". You can create as many Tasklists as you want. Examples include: all of the tasks you need to complete for Adjustment of Status cases or the steps your firm likes to follow whenever you onboard a new client.

With Tasklists, you can generate long lists of tasks, steps, workflows and prefiling instructions in seconds whenever you begin working with a new client or matter.