Interesting developments that will undoubtedly have an impact on the future of the profession – admittedly it may affect some practice areas more than others. This article asserts that Legal Zoom’s success is grounded in the fact that many are satisfied with legal services that are simply “good enough” (as opposed to good, better, or even superior). While I don’t doubt that is true, my experience in legal ethics suggests that those are the same people most likely to become disgruntled, and blame the proverbial “system.” Nevertheless, the legal profession is not altogether different than many other consumer driven markets. Client demands drive the end product.
While I would never begrudge an individual’s right to handle their own legal matters, I am reminded that bad facts make bad law. We should be mindful of the “greater good”. I wonder whether services such as Legal Zoom might actually cause an increase in legal matters, while at the same time driving results that are not desirable for society as a whole.
Just food for thought as we look into the future. As long as there is a demand for what has been termed “assisted pro se”, Legal Zoom (and its imitators/competitors) will continue to exist and will continue to have an impact on legal services. Think about what that means to the legal profession. Will it put solos and small firms out of business? Doubtful. What is more likely to happen is a forced evolution in the delivery of legal services.
What will evolve? How will the legal profession adapt? Our Future of the Profession Committee is discussing issues like this. Check it out. If you are interested in learning more or in being a part of the dialogue, be sure to sign up for the Committee.