Limited Scope Practitioners are creative, problem-solvers who look for ways to divide efforts and help people appropriately participate in addressing their personal civil legal matters. That is the “reactive” and responsive approach, triggered by demand and inquiry. It generally stays within the traditional boundaries of “barratry” and other anti-solicitation laws and rules across the U.S. and in other countries.
While advertising rules have changed over the years, and the American consumer has become less disdainful of lawyers who tastefully advertise, there still seems to be a reluctance on the part of many lawyers to undertake preventive maintenance for past, present and prospective clients. Some use anti-solicitation rules as a defense; others cite “traditional lawyer roles.” I think it is more often a discomfort with advertising legal services other than as passive, responsive, “supply-side” approach such as hanging out one’s shingle and sitting in the office, waiting for the clients to walk in.
There are a lot of shingles out there. There are also a lot of prospective clients who may not even know they need a lawyer. Why not recommend a legal check-up? It is acceptable under all rules of professional responsibility to contact present and former clients to advise them of changes in the law that you think are relevant to them. Start with that list. Send them a “legal check-up” checklist and enclose your LSR fee sheet.
For the rest of the world, try some of these:
- Post a generic or sample checklist–or, even be tter, a self-driven check-up system–on your website or social media page that stays within your jurisdiction’s advertising rules.
- Write short descriptions of real situations where a preventive review truly did prevent a larger legal problem (like that maintenance check can catch an engine problem before the car breaks down).
- Provide examples of how your LSR services can save money with the partnership approach and collaborative solutions available in certain circumstances.
Getting people to do preventive maintenance can be challenging, no matter what type of maintenance it is. Take a page out of the heating & air conditioning, bicycle, piano, automobile, and appliance repair marketing books by developing a reminder to people that a legal check-up is important and, importantly, affordable.