Lawyer Blogging and the First Amendment

Should lawyers be allowed to blog about their clients' cases without express permission from the client? Should lawyers be forced to add a "disclaimer" to a blog?

These are the issues over which battle is being waged in the Supreme Court of Virginia in a case called Hunter v Virginia State Bar.

Hunter, a criminal defense attorney, published a legal blog. In it he talked about national and local issues involving criminal law.

He also posted the details of many of his cases, most of which were wins.

Hunter only posted facts that had come to light in public trials. He posted nothing that was confidential. The Virginia State Bar said "you can't to that - it might be embarrasing."

Various news organizations have weighed in on this fight in the amicus briefs filed.

The Virginia State Bar also said "you are talking about "results", so you must post a disclaimer so that readers won't become confused and think that the result you got in "case A" will the the same result you get.

Hunter said "wait a minute, my blog isn't advertising, its news and opinion."

We have posted all of the briefs in this First Amendment -Lawyer Blogging Case here. Enjoy

Ben Glass
Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.
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