Monthly Archives: November 2013

What’s Stopping You?

After a blog post by Richard Zorza commented on Dr. Julie MacFarlane’s research, I read her full post.  Dr. MacFarlane summarizes her research into the lack of lawyers offering “unbundled” services (or what we call here “Limited Scope Representation,” based on the terminology in ABA Model Rule 1.2(c)).

Nutshell:  demand for these limited services far outstrips the supply of lawyers who offer them.  Surprise: many who sought LSR services did so not because of money, but out of frustration with prior representation or lack of trust in an open budget form of assistance. (See Part 2 of MarFarlane’s research report at page 38.)

Nutshell 2:  the self-imposed and vigorously-defended traditional culture of legal practice is the obstacle, not rules, liability risk, lack of prospective clients or judicial obstruction.

So my question to those of you who have not already tried this form of lawyering is: What is stopping YOU?

By now there are ample reports, articles, blog posts, bar journal editorials, court rulings, CLE courses and other materials that show how and when LSR services can be appropriately offered.  My book alone covers most of those topics (and for less than $10!), but there are others available as well.

Do you have an answer?  Is it an honest obstacle, or a self-imposed limitation?  Think about it and then ask yourself again:  what’s holding me back?

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Cleaning Up Behind Yourself

Your mother or father probably drilled it into your brain.  Your spouse or roommate probably reminded you (one way or another) why it is a good practice.  But do you do it in cyberspace?

I am talking about cleaning up after your cyberself.  How’s that MySpace page doing?  Your first Facebook page?  Got any old social media accounts out there or old websites and blogs?  You might find Lauren Goode’s blog post from last month’s “All Things D” very useful.

In A Handy Guide to Deleting Digital Accounts, Goode give specific instructions on deleting unwanted accounts in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Yahoo, AOL and Google+.  Another option is a tool like Delete Your Account, where you type in the service you from which you want to delete an account, and it presents the instructions for that account.  (E.g., search for “MySpace” and you get instructions for deleting accounts from MySpace.)  (If you don’t remember where you left your digital self, try Bing, Google or seeing a neurologist…)

Make sure you aren’t confusing your own prospective clients with old, out-dated and inaccurate digital accounts.  If you don’t check those profiles at least every month, you should consider deleting them.  You never know how long an unflattering comment might be there, harming your reputation because you were nonresponsive.

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