Kansas Legal Professionals: The Rules of Advertising

There often comes a time when an attorney or a law firm wants to attract a larger client base. Maybe an attorney wants to start his or her own firm and needs to let the community know about the services the new office will provides. Or maybe a firm is looking to expand its practice into new areas of law. Whatever the reason, attracting new clients is usually not an easy task. Most attorneys, especially more senior partners, believe that the only way to obtain quality clients is through old-fashioned word of mouth and referrals from other attorneys who have different practice areas. Although both methods are tried and true, it can often take years to build up a solid client base.

Attorneys that are looking to attract new clients quicker and faster are often looking for new methods not traditionally used in legal circles. One such method is through advertising. Although thought to be taboo by some attorneys, advertising, whether in print ads, internet or television is a valid and often very successful way to draw new clients. However, before you put an advertisement in the local paper or on television, you need to be aware of the applicable rules regarding attorney advertising. In Kansas, attorneys should become familiar with the advertising rules which are set forth in the Rules of Professional Conduct. Violating these rules is sure way to encounter a problem with the Office of Disciplinary Administration. Here are a few key areas where attorneys who are not familiar with the rules related to advertising can encounter problems:

  • Advertisements cannot contain false or misleading statements: Attorney advertisements cannot contain false or misleading statements about the lawyer’s services. This includes statements that are considered likely to create expectations about the results an attorney can achieve. For example, statements regarding the amount of damages the attorney won for a particular client or a result that the attorney was able to achieve in a particular type of case. An attorney may also not compare his or her services to that of another attorney’s services, unless that comparison can be factually substantiated.
  • Advertisements that refer to the attorney as a specialist: An attorney can advertise that he or she does or does not practice in certain areas of law. However, an attorney cannot advertise that he or she specializes or is a certified specialist in an area of law, unless the organization that has given the certification to the attorney has been authorized to do so by the state and the advertisement contains the name of that organization. An exception to this rule is that attorneys that have been admitted to patent practice may designate themselves as a “Patent Attorney”.
  • Failure to name an attorney: In Kansas, attorneys may advertise their legal services through recorded, written or electronic communication, including public media. However, each advertisement must contain the name of at least one attorney who is responsible for its content.

If you received notice from the Office of the Disciplinary Administrator of a pending investigation, contact the Sanger Law Office today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a free and completely confidential consultation. Do not delay. Before you communicate with anyone, you need to speak with an experience professional license defense attorney. Trust the Sanger Law Office to provide you with quality legal services.