Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Avvo abandons its lowball legal services program.

http://www.abajournal.com/news/arti cle/accordingly_we_have_d snowday7507/06/18
I am bummed about this. I use it for criminal. Sure the $3 bigbossman07/07/18
What pisses me off about the whole referral service/fee spli onehell07/12/18
SPEAKING of AVVO caving: Did they do something to their "sc bigbossman07/14/18
snowday75 (Jul 6, 2018 - 2:46 pm)


A testament to the entrepreneur trying to illegally fee split (as a nonlawyer) part of a $20.00 consultation.

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bigbossman (Jul 7, 2018 - 8:17 pm)

I am bummed about this. I use it for criminal. Sure the $39 you make for a consultation is dumb but I got one full fee paying case out of it and that was cool. Unfortunately I wonder if it never took off, MONTHS would go by between being notified that someone used the service, and if you were notified, you and however many other people signed up had to claim the client fast as you could. We are talking 2-4 months between one single chance at a client, that's not real exciting.

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onehell (Jul 12, 2018 - 2:41 pm)

What pisses me off about the whole referral service/fee split prohibition is that if the bar just used plain English, they wouldn't even need a rule. A true referral means the referrer is personally acquainted with and vouches for the referee, so if you're paying someone to falsely say that it would be fraud anyway.

Just giving someone to the next rando who has paid to be on a list and who practices law in the jurisdiction and practice area the potential client has asked about is not a referral. It's advertising. And the flat fee services are, as bigbossman said, really just loss leaders for conventional representation, and Avvo's cut of the consult fee is really just a payment for an advertising "lead." The forty bucks or whatever just helps demonstrate that the client is not just a complete tire kicker.

The real motivation is that the bar hates advertising because it is unprestigious and competes with the older and more senior membership that is established enough to rely entirely on word-of-mouth. They hate the fact that SCOTUS stopped them from prohibiting ads entirely, as most of them did until the 1970s or 80s or something. So they put as much limitation on it as they think they can get away with, and one way of doing that is to basically label any service where you essentially pay for leads to be a referral service or unethical fee split.

Avvo could perhaps have won, but the acquirer didn't want to deal with the hassle and caved. Too bad.

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bigbossman (Jul 14, 2018 - 2:10 am)

SPEAKING of AVVO caving: Did they do something to their "scores?" I am not seeing them anymore this has to be a change in the last day or two (I do check the site a lot, or used to). I will say after the buyout it seems like the website has gotten worse and worse to use. But I had a lot of client reviews on there, it will be a pisser if I have to start shuffling reviewers elsewhere.

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