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The LII is launching a free lawyer-directory service.  The result of a year-long collaboration with Justia.com, the new service offers great value to those in our audience who are looking for legal help, and to the lawyers who offer it.

People looking for legal services now have a way to find public-spirited lawyers who support the goals and activities of the LII.  Of course, we don't offer endorsements or evaluations, but we can tell you whose heart we think is in the right place.  Lawyers who support the LII receive a special "badge" that lets you know who they are -- and they stand out in our search rankings.

For lawyers, the directory offers the opportunity to do well by doing good.  The service is very reasonably priced.  In fact, it's free -- every American lawyer we were able to identify has a basic profile in Justia's directory now (more on how this works with the LII's directory below).  And by buying an LII badge,  lawyers identify themselves to our audience of 2.5 million unique visitors each month as someone who supports our efforts.  A much more detailed picture of how the directory can help lawyers find clients is in Justia's announcement.

Over the years, the LII has been offered many opportunities for commercial partnerships.  This is the first that has seemed to offer something to our audience (and to us) without cluttering the site or offering the potential for conflicts of interest.  We're very, very excited about it, and we hope you will be too.

A big tip of the hat goes to Tim Stanley and the Justians (especially Vasu, Nick, and Dan) for all their help with this.

Where to find it:

  • See the directory here.
  • Get listed here.
  • Read the FAQ here.

How it works:

  • Every American lawyer we could identify has a free listing in Justia's directory.
  • Lawyers who register ("claim their profiles") at Justia are then listed in the LII's directory, and may put additional details into their profile, such as pointers to their websites, social-networking listings, and so on.
  • Lawyers receive credit for good works -- such as making a donation to us ("buying a badge"), creating online content via blogs -- that cause them to rise higher in directory search results.  We will soon add credit for contributing content to WEX and other LII resources.

The Supreme Court hears 8 cases this week, and 3 next (the imbalance is owed to the Inauguration next week).  Here's a quick rundown, with links to our analyses of each:

Monday, 12 January:

Tuesday, 13 January:

Wednesday, 14 January:

Wednesday, 21 January:

Normally we're asocial here at the LII -- our idea of a social-networking site is isolatr, as befits our somewhat withdrawn and geeky image.   But we recognize that a lot of you do have friends, and you like to send them stuff.  As of today, we've made that a lot easier to do with our Wex and LIIBULLETIN collections.  You can e-mail articles, and share them via an assortment of major social-networking sites like del.icio.us and Facebook.

We'll be adding this feature to more collections as the year goes on.  Right now, our US Code and caselaw collections operate in their own frameworks, which makes this more difficult to do, but we'll be upgrading them later in the year.  And we are thinking very hard about the relationship between legal information and Web 2.0 applications -- particularly around questions of crowdsourcing, authority, and expert participation.

You can expect a lot more from us on this in the coming year.  For now, we hope you'll take advantage of our first, small step in this direction.  Happy New Year!