An Indiana Ethics Opinion That May Kill Legal Start Ups, by Carolyn Elefant, myShingle.com
Via the Legal Profession Blog, comes a recent Indiana ethics decision reprimanding a lawyer who’d practiced 41 years without incident for participating Law Tigers, a site that helps members of the public find a motorcycle attorney. Trouble is, in pursuit of a single Tiger that may purportedly cause harm to the public, the Indiana Supreme Court now has the entire fledgling industry of legal matchmaking platforms by the tail.
Here’s the background. The American Association of Motorcycle Injury Lawyers (AAMIL) operates the Law Tigers website – one of dozens of lead gen platforms like the Nolo Law Directory Total Attorneys that direct website visitors and prospective clients to participating lawyers who pay to receive leads within a designated geographic area. Naturally, to encourage site visitors to seek legal services, the Law Tigers website boasts ‘Exceptional Results: Settlements and Verdicts’ and links to glowing client testimonials. However, the respondent lawyers website, which could be accessed through a link on the Law Tigers site, included a disclaimer that a firm could not advertise past settlements or results. . . .