The State Bar certifies all lawyer referral service (LRS) organizations.
Certification protects the public by establishing minimum standards that each participating attorney must meet. It also serves the public by supporting activities to provide affordable legal services.
A lawyer referral service is an organization or group of private attorneys who have agreed to receive referrals for potential clients. This activity is controlled by statute (Business & Professions Code section 6155 and State Bar Rules Title 3. Programs and Services. Division 5. Providers of Programs and Services. Chapter 3. Lawyer Referral Services).
A group that wants to provide a lawyer referral service must apply for and receive certification from the State Bar to market their services to the public. Certification ensures that clients receive referrals for attorneys who are experienced, insured, qualified and committed to serving clients with a wide range of legal problems.
If you are interested in starting an LRS please make sure to do the following:
Business & Professions Code § 6155 et. seq.
Business & Professions Code § 6156 et. seq.
Rule 1-320 (Financial Arrangements With Non-Lawyers)
Nonprofit services: $1,000 for first county in which the service will operate, $500 for the second county, and $250 for each remaining county in which the service will operate, maximum of $10,000.
For-profit services: $5,000 for first county in which the service will operate, $2,500 for the second county, and $1,250 for each remaining county in which the service will operate (maximum $10,000.)
Organizations must be recertified every year they operate a lawyer referral service.
*Fee cap: Fees must be paid for each county where a service operates. However, no service will pay more than $10,000 in fees per year.
For questions about Lawyer Referral Service Provider Certification and fees, please contact Rodney Low at firstname.lastname@example.org.