Attorney-Client privilege becomes a real concern when the client is an inmate and the only means of communicating with him or her is administered by the jail staff. Attorneys worry about the confidentiality of their visits with inmates when speaking with them over an inmate telephone system or when visiting through the in-house video visitation system. But, even though these concerns should not be ignored, video visitation can bring some real benefits to the attorney-inmate experience. There are two specific benefits that the MTI Connexus Video Visitation system provides that should be considered by the jail staff, the inmate and the attorney.
Video Visitation Is Secure
The claim that video visitation is secure may seem contradictory to an attorney, but the truth is that there is no other electronic system that is more secure than the MTI video visitation system. There are two specific reasons for this.
First, the MTI system utilizes a proprietary communications protocol which is not publicly known. While standard communications protocols like SIP and RTP are publicly available, MTI’s protocol is known only to MTI. This means that there do not exist any engineers outside of our company who know how our video and audio streams are composed. This means that there is a great deal more work to be done to reverse engineer and hack our system to obtain the audio/video streams from a conversation.
Second, the MTI system does not provide the jail staff with a means of manually recording or monitoring a visit that has been designated as “privileged”. So, if an attorney has registered as a privileged visitor, or the attorney is visiting from a booth that has been designated as “privileged”, the system will not permit these visits to be recorded or monitored.
Video Visitation Is Convenient
Video visitation8 can significantly improve the wait time for an attorney. Most facilities that utilize video visitation9 have a process for accommodating attorney visits using the video visitation10 system. The MTI system can streamline attorney visits in a number of ways.
First, even in a facility which requires scheduled public visits, visitation officers can still choose to start on-demand visits. Because of this, attorneys can be provided with quick, on-demand connections from an in-house visitor booth.
Also, in facilities that implement “From-Home” visitation, attorneys can register as a privileged visitor with the facility and then schedule visits from the convenience of their offices or even from home. The MTI system even allows for a separate schedule and wait period to be established for attorneys to accommodate a shorter wait time or longer visits. In some counties, the host facility may even provide a free code for public defenders which allows them to connect from their offices using the “From-Home” feature.
While the initial reaction from an attorney to the use of video visitation11 may be one of trepidation, the final verdict should be one of adoption. Video visitation12 is secure, private, and convenient, which can make the experience for all involved parties more productive.