If I answer a question from an anonymous member on LawAdvisor, am I providing legal advice online?
No. Answering a question on LawAdvisor from an anonymous member does not constitute giving legal advice. It is providing legal information. LawAdvisor allows members to ask basic legal questions to help determine whether they need to see a lawyer. Answering such a question in general terms will not create a lawyer-client relationship, nor amount to legal advice.
Am I giving legal advice for free?
No. The replies that you post to legal questions from anonymous members are not legal advice, but rather basiclegal information that will allow the member to make a decision about whether they should retain a lawyer.
How does LawAdvisor deal with the risk of conflicts between clients?
LawAdvisor will provide lawyers with the opportunity to conduct proper conflict checks before accessing any confidential information about a potential case.
The anonymous questions from members will be moderated to ensure they contain no identifying information a member. This means that the initial stage of asking questions does not require a conflict check.
However, during the second stage, when members are seeking to engage a lawyer and are requesting a fee estimate, the member will be required to provide their name and the names of other parties potentially involved in the case. It is at this stage that a lawyer will conduct their own conflict check in the usual way.
Does LawAdvisor charge for its services, or will I have to pay to create a profile?
It will always be free for lawyers to create a basic profile on LawAdvisor. It is also free to answer questions, publish articles, and provide fee propsals to members.
LawAdivsor will charge $75 when a LawAdvisor Case is created with a member. A LawAdvisor case will be automatically created when a member accepts a fee proposal. This charge is for accessing the platform and using all of the tools and document services.
As LawAdvisor develops more features there may be additional charges for Lawyers to use the new parts of the platform.
Will I have to pay to answer a question from an anonymous member?
What does the case management page allow me to do?
The case management page provides a toolkit of interactive features which will allow you to share information and documents with your client and progress the case. This includes document sharing, interactive timelines so all parties can be on the same page, and direct communication options such as instant messaging and video conferencing.
What do I do if a client accepts my fee proposal but refuses to sign the costs agreement?
There is nothing that can be done to force a client to sign a costs agreement after they accept a fee proposal. While this might be frustrating from a lawyer’s perspective, it is no different from risks of ordinary legal practice: a client is always free to decide against retaining a lawyer once they have had full disclosure of the costs. This is why it is essential that any fee proposal or estimate accurately reflects the more detailed costs agreement.
How do I estimate the amount my work will cost, and where does the member see it?
The member requesting legal help will see your fee proposal appear under their job posting when you have submitted it. The full details of the proposal will only be available to the member, not other lawyers who have also provided fee proposals for the member.
A lawyer must use their best judgment when making a fee proposal. While it is not binding, it must be indicative of the fees that will be agreed to in the costs agreement.
Will other lawyers get to see my fee proposal?
No. It is only the member that will see the full detail of the fee proposal. Other lawyers providing fee proposals to the member will see an average/band of what the other lawyers have proposed.
Why should I go to the effort of writing articles, and what would I write about?
Publishing an article is a way of showing potential clients that you are a great lawyer. It will help improve your online visibility and attract more business to your practice.
An excellent article will display your knowledge and specialised skills to members. In addition, you will be contributing to the database of articles that will provide a valuable resource of legal information for our online community, both lawyers and members alike.
Will answers and articles written by lawyers be reviewed or submitted to any quality control before they are published for members to read?
No. It is the responsibility of lawyers publishing on the system to edit their own answers and articles.
Is there an obligation to answer questions?
No. Lawyers are completely free to pick and choose which member’s questions to answer.
What if I answer a job posting but then decide I want to back out and don’t want to give a fee proposal?
A lawyer is free to leave the process at any time before a cost agreement is signed, just as they are in the usual course of business.
Where are files stored, and how can I be sure they will be secure?
Files are hosted in Amazon Web Servers’ Cloud, using bank-grade security. LawAdvisor is using AWS S3, which is hosted in Sydney, to ensure all your files are stored in Australia. We chose this service as over 10,000 organisations in Australia and New Zealand are already using the same service with great results. Current clients include the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
What is “the Cloud”?
But I also want a hard copy of everything for my files or a copy for my own office system, can I do that?
Yes. All your files belong to you and you are free to use them in any way you wish, just as you would in your own office. LawAdvisor simply provides a platform to make using and sharing those files easier.
We know that keeping offline copies of documents is important to some lawyers. You will be able to download and save or print all the information stored on the LawAdvisor platform, including calendar entries, instant message chats, and uploaded documents.
If you would like aoffline copy of the documents you will need to ensure that you save or print these documents and file them yourself in your own offices. Likewise, if a document is created in hard copy, it will be your responsibility to upload it to LawAdvisor system by scanning it.
Will tech support be available if something goes wrong?
Yes. Online support will be available to all Lawyers who have created a case with a member.