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On New York's Restrictions on Lawyer Advertising

New York's proposed restrictions on lawyer advertising are so onerous that they make Justin Patten glad that he practices in the United Kingdom. As reported yesterday by the New York Law Journal, the proposed rules are "so expansive and cover so many angles -- from soliciting mass tort clients to sponsoring pop-up Internet ads to using celebrity voice-overs -- that the justices have taken the unusual step of ordering a 90-day public comment period before the disciplinary standards take effect." This leads Patten to comment:

"Let us be quite blunt about it. The English & Wales Law Society does not have a good reputation amongst lawyers (and the public as well). ... Nevertheless I cannot believe that the Law Society of my country would be doing what is going in New York state with its proposed new advertising rules for lawyers."

Patten points to the comments of Dennis M. Kennedy at Between Lawyers, who says the proposal would bring about "a shocking number of draconian and micro-managing rules." Kennedy continues:

"This seems to be another in a series of recent regulatory efforts by state bar regulators that seem woefully out of touch with the Internet era."

Kevin O'Keefe at LexBlog is equally blunt in his criticism:

"[Y]ou can see why the legal profession has an awful profession. We go around passing rules that make us look like idiots and prevent us from helping you the consumer. Then to make matters worse, we'll spend years in hearings on grievances over alleged illegal conduct interpreting the new rules. Great stuff."

The comment period runs to Sept. 15. More about the rules and the procedure for commenting can be found on the court's Web site.

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on June 16, 2006 at 03:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)


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