Lawyer Advertising in Arizona: The State Bar Run Amok
Laurence H. Winer
Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law
Arizona State Law Journal, Vol. 23, p. 741, 1991
The purpose of this article is to provide a perspective from which to observe both the result the Arizona Supreme Court reaches on lawyer advertising as well as the announced basis for its result. After describing the process in Arizona leading to the current proposed rules, I argue that the court should reject the proposed changes and maintain the basic touchstone in this area of simply regulating "false or misleading" advertising by lawyers. This standard, as applied in the context of lawyer advertising, comports with the governing law, and is both fully adequate and workable to achieve the appropriate objectives of such regulation. In so arguing, I emphasize the most regrettable aspect of the State Bar's petition, namely, the Bar's total failure to make any attempt to justify or demonstrate the need for the proposed changes. This alone should be fatal to the Bar's proposal, and reflects poorly on an organization that should be particularly concerned about appropriate legal procedure and substance. I also argue that the operation and effect of the new rules as a broad prior restraint on speech demand the utmost scrutiny by the court, which they cannot withstand. I then consider several of the more egregious of the proposed changes. These include: (1) the requirement that communications and advertising concerning a lawyer's services be "predominantly informational" ;(2) the special restrictions on electronic media advertisements; and (3) the "warning label" requirements on written solicitations." I close with a few comments regarding alternatives to the Bar's proposed heavy handed rulemaking.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 9
Keywords: Lawyer advertising, First Amendment, free speech
Date posted: May 21, 2009
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