My state bar association is supposed to act in the interests of all of its members, that is, the lawyers in my state. Can't I trust it not to issue regulations that damage rather than help my practice?

In an ideal world, yes, you can. In the real world, though, your state bar association isn't only beholden to its members: it also has to answer to the state government and get along with (or at least not get in the way of) other bureaucratic entities. The results are better in some states and worse in others, but often you wind up with a body that acts against the interests of a significant proportion of its membership whenever it issues a ruling—or simply doesn't grasp that many of its regulations no longer apply to the “real world” of lawyer marketing.

Another reason your state bar won't necessarily have your interests in mind is that it represents all kinds of lawyers, ranging from sole practitioners to small firms of three to five partners to large firms with dozens of partners and even more associates. The larger firms in your state will have a disproportionate amount of pull; so will the small practitioners, who make up a lot of the grass-roots membership (which the bar association may be eager to cater to). If you belong to a small firm, you're stuck in the middle, and the rules issued by your state bar may be a pesky hindrance rather than an active help.

What can you do? Well, first, you can lobby your state bar not to issue foolish or counterproductive regulations. And second, you can sign on with Great Legal Marketing, which will keep you abreast of what your state bar is up to weeks or months before it issues new regulations that interfere with your ability to make a living.

Questions? Call our legal marketing experts at 888-791-2150 to find out what we can do for you!

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