The ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility is in the process of preparing a formal recommendation to amend ABA Model Rules 7.1, 7.2, 7.3, 7.4 and 7.5, which address how lawyers provide the public with information about legal services. Legal Marketing Association (LMA) has joined with the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers (APRL) and other members of the community to applaud these efforts.
In February 2018, LMA solicited input from members on the proposed changes as well as examples of the impact the current rules have had on their marketing activities. On March 1, 2018, LMA provided feedback on the proposed changes through a formal statement supporting this work and encouraging consideration of additional amendments to the proposed model rules. Additionally, at the request of the ABA Working Group, LMA submitted examples from members highlighting the negative impact the current rules have on firms' ability to effectively inform the public about the services they provide. The letter and examples provided to the ABA are linked below for your reference.
In March, the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility issued a formal report to amend the rules. The LMA responded with a letter on March 25, 2018 supporting adoption of the streamlined Model Rules of Professional Conduct and offered to assist the ABA in preparation for the vote during the House of Delegates meeting during the ABA Annual Meeting in August. This letter of support is linked in the Resources section below.
Thank you for your interest and support of this important work by the LMA Ethics and Marketing Working Group and the LMA Advocacy Advisory Council. Please check back in July for additional actions you and your firm can take to support adoption of these new rules.
If you would like additional reading on this matter, we recommend the following sources.
- LMA April 2018 Letter to ABA Standing Committee
- LMA March 2017 Letter to ABA Working Group
- LMA February 2017 Letter to ABA Standing Committee
- LMA March 2018 Letter to ABA Standing Committee
- Navigating Industry Change Via a Seat at the Table on LMA Strategies+ Blog regarding LMA participation in ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility Forum
- "ABA Attorney Ad Rule Revamp Picks Up Steam" by Law360
- APRL Proposed Amendments to Model Rules 7.1, 7.2, 7.3, 7.4 and 7.5 from AmericanBar.org
- Comments to APRL Proposal to Amend Rules 7.1-7.5 from AmericanBar.org
- 2015 Report of the Regulation of Lawyer Advertising Committee (June 2015) from the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers
- Regulation of Lawyer Advertising Committee Supplemental Report (April 2016) from the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers