. Legal ethics

You would have thought it would have been with Houston, but still…

Some interesting news today in the intersection of legal ethics and sports.  (And technically this makes two straight posts dabbling in that space.)  You might recall seemingly forever ago that I posted about a very short lived partnership between the ABA and a company called Rocket Lawyer.  If you don’t remember anything about that, you can read another bit about it here.

While the Rocket Lawyer and ABA deal may have died on the vine, Rocket Lawyer has not gone away over the last few years.  And, with today’s news, it is going to be in the media spotlight a good bit as it has announced a new partnership with the Golden State Warriors, an NBA franchise.

Rocket Lawyer’s mission is to try to make legal services more affordable for “middle-class” consumers, and the articles about this partnership make clear that Rocket Lawyer will not be providing legal services to the players or coaches but will be available to all of the behind-the-scenes employees that work for the organization.

I’d say that the best pull quote from the Rocket Lawyer press release ABA Journal article would be:

“Legal is expensive, and lawyers cost a lot of money. And so our mission is to get the everyday champions in the world the same kind of legal help and access to justice that rich people in big companies have,” [Rocket Lawyer CEO Charley] Moore says.

And Rocket Lawyer also clearly thinks this endeavor is going to be quite profitable for it in the long term (or thinks that the Warriors won’t be blocking too many shots on the court this season) because they’ve also announced that they will make $500 contributions to Generation Thrive (a charitable endeavor that is a joint collaboration of a charitable foundation established by the Warriors and Kaiser Permanente) for every blocked shot the Warriors register this season.

This development is just a reminder that, while the companies operating in the legal services space in less than traditional ways do not always make news, they are always out there and working.  And the services they deliver are definitely ones that consumers actually want – but can’t get affordably from lawyers like business documents, estate planning stuff, and legal document review.  Outside of places like Arizona and Utah, however, the kinds of models that companies like Rocket Lawyer are putting together are not necessarily easy to make work and be a part of … if you are a lawyer rather than just a regular person. It is also worth noting that Rocket Lawyer is among the approved entities in Utah operating in their regulatory sandbox. The company there is described as involving “lawyer-provided legal services to supplement software-provided legal document completion” and involving sharing of fees with non-lawyers and non-lawyer ownership.

And, speaking of regular people and finding ways to make things more affordable, I have been doing a little bit of seminar/presentation work with a company called Quimbee that has been providing custom animated CLE presentations.  The first two presentations I have partnered with them to put out are now up and live at their website.  You can get an hour of CLE credit in the ethics vein (in around 11-18 approved jurisdictions at the moment depending on which one you choose) for a little under $50 by taking either course.

I will say that I’m a little disappointed that my presentations ending up rolling out at a time when Quimbee is pivoting a bit away from the really cool stuff (at least I thought it was and was what originally intrigued me) they were doing with animated videos so the animation of my presentations is really just my very dry slide deck that I wasn’t expecting to be up on the screen, but the contents of the two presentations are still pretty decent I think – particularly for what they cost you.

I have one more still to come that hasn’t finished the production process, but it is a presentation I’ve only ever given in connection with the TBA Ethics Roadshow and that had its genesis in one of my more widely read posts on here, so stay tuned for that as well.

The first one that went live is a version of a talk I’ve given before called: “What Regular People Don’t Know About the Ethics Rules and What That Means for Lawyers.” You can view a preview of it and purchase it through this link.

The second one that is also available is a version of a talk I’ve given quite a few times in the past both solo and with co-presenters called “Breaking Away From Bad: Avoiding Troublesome Clients and Ethically Handling Mistakes Made For the Good Ones.” You can view a preview of it and purchase it through this link.