eLawyering Blog

eLawyering Blog

Lawyers Delivering Legal Services OnLine

Tag Archives: document

ReinventLaw Silicon Valley

Posted in eLawyering Events, Law Startups, Marketing On-Line Legal Services, Venture Capital, Virtual Law Practice
ReinventLawSiliconValley is happening next Friday, March 8 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. The brain child of Professors Daniel Martin Katz and Renee Knake, co-founders and co-directors of the Reinvent Law Laboratory at Michigan State University Law School, the event promises to be quite a bash. The event is free, but attendance … Continue Reading

Best Practice Guidelines for Legal Document Service Providers

Posted in Document Automation, eLawyering Ethical Issues, eLawyering Events, Legal Ethics, LegalZoom, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
The American Bar Association’s eLawyering Task Force has compiled a draft set of best practice guidelines for legal document providers, which can be downloaded here*.   An increasingly popular – and controversial – category of service providers are those that supply customer-specific documents over the Internet, using interactive software and/or human resources, without purporting to be engaged in … Continue Reading

UPL and Legal Document Preparation by Non-Lawyer Providers

Posted in LegalZoom, Unauthorized Practice of Law
The ABA Standing Committee on Client Protection just released a survey it conducted on unlicensed practice of law programs ( UPL) in United States jurisdictions in 2011-12. Only 29 jurisdictions responded to the survey.  Twenty-three of the 29 actively enforce UPL regulations, although some jurisdictions indicate that insufficient funding or resources make enforcement challenging. Nine jurisdictions … Continue Reading

Law Startups in La La Land

Posted in Cloud Computing, Law Firm Productivity, Law Startups, Legal Referral, Venture Capital
I was at a panel in San Francisco this week titled: Law + Tech – The Unpopulated Multi-Billion Dollar Industry . By "La La Land" I don’t mean Los Angeles or California, but rather "to be in one’s own world" as defined by the Urban Dictionary.  As I listened to the founders talk, I couldn’t help thinking that … Continue Reading

Free Online Course on Digital Law Practice

Posted in Change, Document Automation, eLawyering Events, Social Networking, Training and Education, Unauthorized Practice of Law, Unbundled Legal Services, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) is offering a free online course on digital law practice, primarily for law students and law professors, but anyone can register.   I don’t doubt that most law faculty will find these topics to be irrelevant, but its connecting with law students, as over 500 law students have … Continue Reading

Legal Forms for the Price of a Song on iTunes?*

Posted in Change, Collaboration Tools, Competition, Document Automation, Law Firm Productivity, Legal Fees, Self-Help Law, Virtual Law Firms, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
Legal forms, without the legal advice or assistance of a lawyer, continue to decline in value. As a pure digital product, a legal form follows the price curve of other digital goods eventually approaching zero.  Several new start-ups in the legal industry will accelerate this trend. Docracy is a new legal document start-up, founded by … Continue Reading

Is LegalZoom Just a Self-Help Legal Software Company?

Posted in Competition, Document Automation, eLawyering Ethical Issues, Expert Systems, LegalZoom, Self-Help Law, Unauthorized Practice of Law, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
In a Fortune Magazine blog post by Roger Parloff just last week, entitled Can Software Practice Law?, writing about the class action suit against LegalZoom in Missouri for violating Missouri’s UPL statute, Parloff argues that LegalZoom is no more than a self-help legal software company, and therefore entitled to the same protections as a self-help legal software … Continue Reading

What Every Lawyer Should Know About Document Automation

Posted in Change, Cloud Computing, Collaboration Tools, Competition, Expert Systems, LegalZoom, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
For years some law firms, but not all, have used some form of document automation in their law offices. Ranging from an MS Word macro to long standing programs such as HotDocs, as well as automated forms distributed by legal publishers such as Willmaker by Nolo, some law offices have incorporated some form of document … Continue Reading

LegalZoom is Considering an IPO

Posted in Competition, eLawyering Ethical Issues, LegalZoom, Unauthorized Practice of Law, Unbundled Legal Services, Venture Capital
Apparently LegalZoom is in the early stages of planning an IPO, (going public),  according to an unnamed source at VentureBeat. Employing more that 500 employees, and having raised over $45 million in venture capital over the last few years, LegalZoom is clearly the leading non-lawyer legal document preparation web site. This is a good example … Continue Reading

60% of UK Survey Respondents Said They Would Buy Legal Advice From National Brands

Posted in Competition, Marketing On-Line Legal Services, UK Legal Reform
YouGov, a research firm based in Great Britain, in a survey of consumer preferences for legal services recently reported that 60% of respondents said they would buy legal advice from brands like Barclays, AA, Co-op and Virgin. The report states that  “Law firms build their business on their reputation not on their brands and, in … Continue Reading

The Law Wizard – from Great Britain

Posted in Document Automation, Pro Se, Public Sector eLawyering, Self-Help Law, Web Legal Advisors, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
I discovered an interesting web site called The Law Wizard,  still in beta, for pro se parties doing their own probate, in the United Kingdom.  The site promises to offer a unique package of online interactive tools, guides and videos. The Probate Wizard is initially designed for individuals who want to probate their own estates, … Continue Reading

Venture Capital Flowing Into Legal Enterprises: Total Attorneys Receives Infusion of Capital

Posted in Competition, Law Firm Productivity, LegalZoom, Marketing On-Line Legal Services, Outsourcing, Venture Capital, Virtual Law Firms, Virtual Law Practice
Private capital is beginning to flow into companies that are operating at the intersection of the delivery of legal services and the Internet. Total Attorneys, a Chicago-based company,  just announced that they received a multimillion dollar investment from BIA Digital Partners, a Virginia-based venture capital firm. Total Attorneys is most known for the marketing services … Continue Reading

DirectLaw is Becoming an Open and Multi-Sided Platform for Virtual Law Firms

Posted in DirectLaw Law Firms, Document Automation, Law Firm Productivity, LegalZoom, Unbundled Legal Services
The DirectLaw Virtual Law Platform is evolving into what is called a multi-sided and open platform. Our latest feature enables the sales of non-Rapidocs documents and HOTDOCS templates, in addition to Rapidocs automated document templates. We added this functionality in response to our #1 question from law firms — "Can I use my own documents?" … Continue Reading

Increase in Self-Help Divorce in Detroit; Calibre Law Offers Limited Legal Services for Divorcing Couples

Posted in Pro Se, Self-Help Law, Unbundled Legal Services
Detroit News just published an article on the decrease in divorces because of the recession – a national trend, and an increase in pro se divorces in Detroit, also a national trend. The article discussed the possibility that law firms could offer "unbundled legal services" as a way of reducing the cost of divorce, but … Continue Reading

DirectLaw Launches Ferraris Law Group – Its’ First Virtual Law Firm in Tennessee

Posted in Unbundled Legal Services, Virtual Law Firms, Virtual Law Practice, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
DirectLaw is pleased to announce the opening of a new virtual law practice by Tim Ferraris in Knoxville, Tennessee.   The firm will provide services in the areas of business, family and divorce, estate planning, landlord/tenant, and name changes over the Internet throughout the state of Tennessee. Tim founded Ferraris Law Group and its unique … Continue Reading

DirectLaw Launches Montreuil & Associates- Its’ Fourth Virtual Law Firm in Georgia

Posted in Unbundled Legal Services, Virtual Law Firms, Virtual Law Practice
DirectLaw is pleased to announce the opening of a new virtual law practice by Montreuil & Associates in Macon, Georgia.   The firm will provide services in the areas of business, family and divorce, estate planning, landlord/tenant, and name changes over the Internet throughout the state of Georgia. The firm provides both traditional legal services … Continue Reading

DirectLaw Launches SlatterLaw – Its’ Third Virtual Law Firm in Georgia

Posted in Unbundled Legal Services, Virtual Law Firms, Virtual Law Practice, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
 DirectLaw is pleased to announce the launching of SlatterLaw its third virtual law firm in the State of Georgia. SlatterLaw will provide online legal services to small businesses and individuals throughout Georgia. Kerry Slatter founded the law firm with the goal of providing convenient and cost-effective legal services to small business owners and individuals across … Continue Reading

Analyzing LegalZoom’s Advertising Practices

Posted in Competition, eLawyering Ethical Issues, LegalZoom
There is a blog post at For Connecticut Lawyers which analyzes LegalZoom’s deceptive advertising practices that are designed to persuade consumers that purchasing legal documents from LegalZoom is the same as a service from an attorney. The post examines the hidden nature of the disclaimer notice that LegalZoom cannot give legal advice, and questions what … Continue Reading

Automated Document Assembly as a Disruptive Legal Technology

Posted in Change, Click-And-Mortar, Competition, Document Automation, Expert Systems, LegalZoom, Self-Help Law, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
Richard Susskind, in his new book, The End of Lawyers? Rethinking the Nature of Legal Services, devotes a chapter to disruptive legal technologies and identifies automated document assembly as a leading example. A related analysis can be found in a paper produced by Darryl Mountain, a Vancouver attorney, that is titled "Disrupting Conventional Law Firm Business … Continue Reading

UPL Issue in On-Line Document Assembly

Posted in Document Automation, eLawyering Ethical Issues, LegalZoom, Unauthorized Practice of Law, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
Recently a prospect for our DirectLaw Web Service asked me whether it was the unauthorized practice of law for a law firm to use a legal document that is generated by our web-enabled document automation system (Rapidocs), because the legal form did not originate within the law firm itself. In this model, a client completes … Continue Reading

First DirectLaw firm in Georgia

Posted in Click-And-Mortar, Document Automation, Law Firm Productivity, Unbundled Legal Services, Virtual Law Firms, Virtual Law Practice, Web-Enabled Document Assembly
EssentiaLegal, based in Atlanta, Georgia, and founded by Robert Arrington, Latif Oduolo-Owoo, & Michael Mason, three alumni from large law firm practices in Atlanta, is a new style law firm, part virtual and part physical that is designed to serve the broad middle class with unbundled legal services. The physical office is located in a … Continue Reading

LEGALTECH NEW YORK 2009

Posted in Document Automation, eLawyering Events, Law Firm Productivity, Marketing On-Line Legal Services, Virtual Law Firms, Web Legal Advisors
We are exhibiting our DirectLaw Web Service at LEGALTECH in New York on February 2-4, 2009. This show is one of the largest legal technology shows involving over 450 legal technology vendors which attract over 13,000 participants. The show is at the New York Hilton at 1335 Sixth Avenue. We are Booth #1621 on Level … Continue Reading