Pro Bono Work Nourishes the Soul
A Savvy Approach to Finding Quality Leads
As long as the practice of law has been around, attorneys have been helping others. Legal services are valuable in our culture, but that value oftentimes makes them inaccessible to the underprivileged or to the organizations that may need them the most. The American Bar Association states that lawyers should aspire to render, without fee, at least 50 hours of pro bono legal services per year, with an emphasis that these services be provided to people of limited means or nonprofit organizations that serve the poor.
Helping others both nourishes the soul and works toward the common good. For some attorneys their motivating factor might be paying it forward in terms of education. For others it's shedding light on veterans' issues or even representing the wrongly accused. Reaching out to those in need through pro bono work can rebalance your work life, regenerate your spirit and help you gain a greater sense of connectedness with the law.
Far too often the attorney reputation gets maligned - from being called ambulance chasers to being characterized as unemotional legal robots. But contrary to popular belief, many attorneys actually cite the ability to make a positive change in society as the reason they attended law school in the first place.
According to a recent Super Lawyers survey, 46 percent stated working in a challenging field as the number-one reason they started practicing law.* Coming in second was helping others, at 30 percent.* Pro bono work addresses both of these ideas, often expanding an attorney's professional experience through volunteering for causes they feel passionate about. Pro bono involvement is also a great way to showcase your firm's expertise while providing a useful service to the people who really need it.
The idea of giving back can enhance firm morale and loyalty and can factor into better employee retention rates. Doing Good While Doing Well: A Road Map to Success with Pro Bono will shed light on some of the societal and altruistic benefits surrounding volunteer legal work and guide you through four simple steps to set the foundation for a sustainable pro bono program at your firm.
*2017 Super Lawyers Legal Trends Survey
From the Vault -- David Rudovsky
For Hunt & Tuegel, PLLC out of Central Texas, free legal consultations were becoming an issue. While they were offering advice and sitting down face-to-face with prospects, they weren't seeing a return with regards to high quality clients. To remedy this issue, they decided to use their FindLaw website and Super Lawyers list selections to pursue the type of client they were interested in.
Russel Hunt Sr., who founded the firm, is an eleven-time Super Lawyers selectee, and his partner, Michelle Tuegel, has been selected to the Texas Rising Stars list three times. Tuegel was also selected to the list of Up-and-Coming 50: Women Texas Rising Stars list in 2017.
Now, both Hunt and Tuegel use the SuperLawyers.com directory to promote their accolades and reach consumers who are searching for attorneys considered to be a step above the rest. They also added their attorney bios and video to their online profiles. To build on this increased exposure, they also advertised in the 2017 Texas Super Lawyers Magazine which is distributed throughout the state.
On top of the publicity they receive through local television and radio interviews, their partnership with FindLaw and Super Lawyers has helped the firm reach more qualified leads that moved from the consultation phase to actually becoming a client.
Download the case study to learn more about how Hunt and Tuegel used an integrated legal marketing approach to find higher quality clients.
One generation always paves the way for the next. In the 2006 issue of Pennsylvania and Delaware Super Lawyers Magazine, we profiled civil rights pioneer David Rudovsky, who himself learned from another civil rights legend. An excerpt:
Rudovsky graduated from Queens College in 1964 and enrolled in New York University Law School. Living in Greenwich Village, Rudovsky soaked up the social ferment of New York in that era. During the summer after his first year of law school he went to Albany, Ga., to intern for legendary civil rights attorney C.B. King.
"We had a number of disturbing experiences," Rudovsky says. "We had a cross burned where we were staying, and there was always a low-level fear in the office. There wasn't a day that went by where there wasn't some crisis over a civil rights issue. It opened my eyes to the degree of oppression in the South at that time, and to the possibility that legal responses to those kinds of conditions might make a difference."
Rudovsky is not only a 14-time Super Lawyers list selectee, he also teaches law in the areas of civil liberties, civil rights, and criminal justice. His work concerns the protection of the constitutional rights of individuals and groups. Rudovsky's litigation, writing, and teaching have centered on the issues of governmental misconduct, discrimination issues, the abuse of police power, prisoners' rights, and governmental surveillance.
Read the rest of Rudovsky's story in the full feature article on SuperLawyers.com. And be sure to check out the latest edition of Pennsylvania & Delaware Super Lawyers Magazine here.