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BizReport : Internet Marketing 101 : October 23, 2020

Personal Injury Lawyer Advertising Rules and Regulations

Like with any other profession or area of practice in this modern-day and age, lawyers now maintain websites and social media accounts to promote their services.

by BizReport

This is alongside print media, billboards, as well as advertisements in bus stop benches. However, personal injury lawyers need to be extremely careful when it comes to advertising their services to ensure that they adhere to the ethical rules designed to protect genuine accident victims. In line with this, below are some of the things that you should know about personal injury lawyer advertising rules and regulations.

Allowable Content
The advertising rules and regulations for personal injury lawyers may vary from one country or state to another. However, mentioning the name and contact details of the practitioner, as well as the information regarding their area of practice or specialty, are often considered as allowable content. In addition to this, the law practice where the practitioner is a member can also be included in the promotional material.

A list of legal services of the firm, which may include personal injury services, can also be included in the marketing materials used to promote the firm's services because this is considered to be details about their area of practice or specialty. In this case, according to a seasoned Houston personal injury lawyer, they are allowed to mention in their ad that they cater to sports injuries, medical negligence, as well as motorcycle injuries to name a few, as long as these are part of the service they offer. However, some states don't count the geographical area of practice as part of the information about their area of practice.

Prohibited Content
Some countries or states may be more stringent compared to others in terms of the restricted content, or the information that should not be included in a law firm's promotional materials, particularly for personal injury lawyers. In line with this, some countries don't allow photographs or images of any kind, including the photos of the practitioners and their offices. Some are also strict when it comes to the statements, as well as the logos that can be included in the marketing campaign. Nevertheless, for other states and countries, photographs, statements, as well as logos are already considered as allowable content, depending on the method of publication.

Allowable Methods of Publication
Like with the content of the promotional materials, the allowable methods of publication can also vary from one country or state to another. Nonetheless, it is often the case that personal injury lawyers can advertise their services in printed publications as well as in the digital form of yellow pages. They can also advertise in billboards and other printed documents such as flyers and brochures.

Prohibited Methods of Publication
Generally, personal injury lawyers are restricted from promoting their services due to ethical reasons. However, certain countries and states allow them to still do so, provided they leverage the appropriate method of publication. It is often the case that advertising on radio and television, as well as the public exhibition of photographs and recorded telephone messages, are deemed inappropriate. Overall, personal injury lawyers can still promote their services, for as long as their advertisements are neither false nor misleading.

Advertising on the Internet
Because of the advancements in modern technology that paved the way for the emergence of the internet, the rules and regulations governing the marketing campaign of personal injury lawyers need to be updated accordingly. The updates need to encompass the digital channels which are not widely used for marketing purposes. Some of these digital channels include the official websites of the law firm or the practitioner, online yellow pages or other similar directories, community agency websites, as well as websites that refer to inquiries regarding personal injury services.

Search Engine Listings
When it comes to advertising using search engines, the rules and regulations vary depending on how the information appears. Typically, search engines display sites that are eligible in garnering organic traffic because their site is optimized. Conversely, they also display sites that paid them to do so. In this case, if the website of a personal injury lawyer appears on a search engine because a web user entered the keyword that targeted their site, then some countries or states don't consider this as a form of advertisement.

However, when a law firm pays a search engine to display their website on the front page of the search results when web users enter keywords in their niche, then this is regarded as a form of paid advertisement. In this case, the clause about the allowed and restricted content about the marketing material often applies. Thus, law firms promoting the services of their personal injury lawyers should focus on the optimization of their website to garner organic traffic instead.

Social Media Promotion
More often than not, social media profiles, as well as the posts uploaded in these accounts, are regarded as lawyer advertising. Hence, the regulations that a country or a state impose regarding the allowed and prohibited content when it comes to social media platforms is followed. In this case, personal injury lawyers must exert extra precaution because they can still be held liable for the posts in their social media accounts, even if another person uploaded the content.

Personal injury lawyers must also be careful in terms of who they add as contacts or friends on their social media accounts such as Facebook or LinkedIn. This is because the automated features of these social media platforms may violate the solicitation rules that come with personal injury lawyer advertising.

In conclusion, even lawyers need to advertise their services to ensure that the people who need them will know how to get in touch with them. However, it is still necessary that they exert an extra effort to ensure that they are not violating the ethical rules that are intended to protect real victims. In this case, if you have a law firm, make sure that all your promotional posts, specifically for your personal injury lawyers, adhere to the ethical advertising rules and regulations.

Image source: Pixabay


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