Business of Law

Avvo offers fixed-fee legal services through an attorney network in 18 states

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Expanding on a fledgling plan to offer fixed-fee legal services through a network of lawyers, Avvo has announced that it is rolling out the program in 18 states beginning Tuesday.

“The beauty here is we get them the customer, we get the cash up front, and they don’t have to worry about billing or tracking time,” Avvo founder and CEO Mark Britton told Robert Ambrogi’s LawSites blog, explaining the services provided by Avvo Legal Services to its lawyer network.

“This is a shortcut to everything practice management software does,” Britton said. “You’ve been paid, and you know the services you’re delivering. What could be easier?”

Avvo defines the scope of services offered and sets prices, the blog post reports. Lawyers in the network can choose which services they want to provide.

Some observers have expressed concern that the arrangement might involve prohibited fee-sharing with a nonlawyer, the Ambrogi blog post notes. However, Britton and general counsel Josh King say there is no ethical issue because a marketing fee is paid to Avvo as a separate transaction.

Right now, the new legal business is operating in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Britton said he expects to expand to a substantial number of additional states before the end of the year.

Related coverage: “Avvo readies rollout of fixed-fee legal services” “Avvo launches service providing on-demand legal advice for a fixed fee”

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