Lawyer advertising has always been a controversial subject, so much so that state officials and bar associations have taken to creating rules for what images can be shown and what can and cannot be said. Apparently aliens with “car” insurance problems, pit bulls with spiked collars and law firm slogans are unacceptable. Today, Nathan Koppel of the WSJ wrote about how amusing legal ads have drawn criticisms in some states.
Public Citizen attorney Greg Beck and his colleagues argued a case in 2007 claiming that New York state’s legal advertising rules violated attorneys’ right to free speech. The federal court agreed, and put an end to many of the restrictions in New York’s state law, though the state is currently appealing. A similar case is going on in Florida, where attorney ads aren’t allowed to have slogans, descriptions of quality, background noises and other common advertising techniques.