Category Archives: Document Assembly

Thoughts on the Shriver Study

It is now several months since the California Shriver Pilot Report was issued.  The findings and recommendations concerning benefits of counsel have been widely disseminated. (Report announcement summary here) So, I want to here highlight some of the findings that … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Counsel, Access to Justice Generally, Court Management, Document Assembly, E-filing, Legal Aid, Self-Help Services

Google Home May Help Us Understand the Definition of “Legal Advice,” and Therefore of What Activities Falls Under Regulatory Authority.

This is sort of fun. We have been struggling now for over two decades to find the most useful and access-expanding ways of explaining when an interaction is the giving of information, not generally subject of regulation as the practice … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Artificial Intelligence, Child Support, Document Assembly, Family Law, Legal Ethics, Non-Lawyer Practice, Plain Language, Public Education, Remote Services, Self-Help Services, Systematic Change, Technology, Triage | 1 Comment

National Academy Report On Need for Strategy to Understand Impact of Technology on Economy and Employment Suggests Need to Go Further

As reported in the New York Times, and elaborated in Nature, a panel of the National Academies has called for a national approach to data to understand and manage the impact of technology on the economy and jobs.  As Nature … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, Court Management, Document Assembly, Non-Lawyer Practice, Research and Evalation, Science, Simplification, Systematic Change, Technology, Triage

Guest Blogger Claudia Johnson: What I’ve learned in the past 9 years of helping legal aid, courts, and other non-profits create online forms to promote Access for All

What I’ve learned in the past 9 years of helping legal aid, courts, and other non-profits create online forms to promote Access for All Claudia C. Johnson* While working across the U.S. in supporting states and courts adapt online forms … Continue reading

Posted in Document Assembly, Guest Bloggers, Self-Help Services, SRLN, Technology, Tools | 2 Comments

SRLN Announces Forms Competition

The SRLN Forms & Technology Working Group is holding its first ever Civil Legal Problems Forms Contest.  There are two categories in the competition: Best Static Form Best Automated Form This is a great opportunity to be part of an … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, Access to Justice Generally, Document Assembly, Forms, SRLN

The New HHS Child Support Regs Will Increase Child Support Payments and Strengthen the Argument for Expanded Self-Help Services

There is additional good news in the new HHS Child Support regs, which are to be effective Jan 19, 2017 (analysis and link to full text of regs here).  They will increase payments to custodial parents, and they also strengthen … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Debt Collction, Document Assembly, Family Law, Federal Agencies, Forms, Funding, Non-Lawyer Practice, Self-Help Services

New York Times Highlights Access to Justice, the Self-Represented, Technology and LawHelp Interactive

In a recent Year of Big Ideas in Social Change piece, the Times highlights almost the full area of what we all do: Another example [of using tech to democratize] is civil legal aid. Even though people involved in civil … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Boards, Court Management, Document Assembly, expungement, Forms, Legal Aid, Technology

DOJ and FTC Weigh In on Exempting Websites from the Practice of Law

On June 16 of this year, North Carolina passed a law creating a limited carve-out from the definition of the practice of law for websites that met certain requirements.  The bill is here.  There has been robust critique of the … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Business Structures, Anti-Trust, Bar Associations, De-Regulation, Dept. of Justice, Document Assembly, Federal Agencies, Forms, Non-Lawyer Practice, Plain Language, Rules Reform, Technology

On Waking Up From a Nightmare that was About Trying to E-File in the Supreme Court– Maybe We Can Use the Idea!

I just woke up this morning in a panic from a nightmare that would be funny if it were not so scary. There I am in the dream trying to e-file a pleading with the Supreme Court.  Naturally it is … Continue reading

Posted in Document Assembly, E-filing, Supreme Court

Integrating the ABA Futures Report and the Justice For All Components

Its finally here, the ABA Future of Legal Services Report. As expected, it covers a lot of ground, and is a lot to read. As an aid to speedy integration into other projects, I have prepared this table that compares … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, ABA, Access to Counsel, Access to Justice Generally, Alternative Business Structures, Attorney-Client, Bar Associations, Court Fees and Costs, Court Management, Document Assembly, E-filing, Incnetives, Law Schools, Legal Aid, Legal Ethics, LEP, Mediation, Middle Income, Mixed Model, Non-Lawyer Practice, Outcome Measures, Plain Language, Planning, Referral Systems, Research and Evalation, Rules Reform, Self-Help Services, Simplification, Systematic Change, Technology, Transparency, Triage, Unbundling | 2 Comments

Claudia Johnson Guest Post: Appellate Courts show willingness to reverse decisions where due process and decisions are not explained in SRL cases—Are DV cases the canary and a natural for innovation?

Multiple decisions have come to my attention where appellate courts are reversing trial courts on cases where one of the parties did not have a lawyer. All cases come from Domestic  Violence dockets. Is this a new trend for DV … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Appellate Practice, Document Assembly, Domestic Violence, Family Law, Guest Bloggers, Judicial Ethics, Self-Help Services | 1 Comment

Does the Concept of “Entity Regulation” Provide an Entry Point for Access Contribution Requrements

The ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Services has just released for comment an Issues Paper Concerning Unregulated LSP Entities.  The basic idea is that currently unregulated legal services provider entities, such as online document assembly services, might be … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, ABA, De-Regulation, Document Assembly, Incnetives, Metrics | 2 Comments

Important Paper On Impact of Technology On Need For Lawyers May Answer One Question, But Ask Bigger Ones

A recent New York Times article reports on a just drafted study on the potential impact on legal employment markets of the spread of technology. As explained in the Times: . . . [T]here are many human activities that cannot … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Attorney-Client, Bar Associations, Document Assembly, Metrics, Non-Lawyer Practice, Research and Evalation, Rules Reform, Simplification, Technology

Answering a Law Professor’s Worry that Free Online Access to Caselaw Will not Help Access to Justice

Brian Sheppard, who teaches at Seton Hall Law School, in an interesting blog post on Bloomberg, raises the question whether the Harvard Law School digitization project I blogged about recently, might not really help access to justice. His worry is … Continue reading

Posted in Document Assembly, E-filing, Libraries, Self-Help Services, Technology | 8 Comments

New York Making Big Progress on Multi-Lingual Court Orders

Many of us have long believed that creating multi-lingual court orders could have a big impact on compliance and court efficiency. The New York courts have recently started taking big steps in that direction.  As the press release says: In … Continue reading

Posted in Court Management, Document Assembly, Domestic Violence, LEP, Technology | 2 Comments