You’ve got to applaud Austin, Texas based lawyer, Lee DiFilippo.
Whereas many attorneys with experience in corporate transactions, not to mention a CPA degree in their back pocket might focus on representing Fortune 500 companies or sexy business start-ups, DiFilippo set out to assist moderate income folks in the state of Texas obtain access to courts. Yet in spite of DiFilippo’s willingness to offer unbundled legal services and affordable flat fees, he couldn’t find enough takers for his services, as he describes in his Testimony to the Commission on the Future of Legal Services on February 5, 2015.
According to DiFilippo, he first attempted to launch his firm through own grassroots marketing efforts, visiting local community centers, churches and YMCAs. When these efforts failed to yield a critical mass of clients, DiFilippo went to the source, reaching out to various legal aid organizations seeking referrals. Two of the groups were, according to DiFilippo, reluctant to refer limited scope clients to a private attorney, while one of the legal aid groups did not even have a formal referral program. Meanwhile, another group said that it could not refer limited scope clients to lawyers unless they were on a bar association-sponsored referral list.
Undeterred, DiFilippo reached out to the State Bar of Texas asking it to create a referral list so he could receive legal aid referral but as yet, he has had no response. Finally, DiFilippo stumbled across an article by Wayne Moore, a long-time purveyor of unbundled services (so much so that he doesn’t appear to have much internet presence!) who offered to assist DiFilippo in achieving his goals.
Still, search the web and you won’t find DiFilippo’s story or others like his. Instead, you’ll find the ABA President touting the potential for creating a limited license legal technician (sort of the equivalent of nurse practitioners in the medical profession). And you’ll also find lawyers – and indeed, the entire profession – castigated by non-practicing attorneys for our failure to unequivocally embrace the LLLT model. [click to continue…]