QualitySolicitors (QS) has today unveiled an exclusive partnership with online legal services provider LegalZoom – the most recognised legal brand in the US – ahead of an advertising campaign that will by openly hostile to supermarkets, banks and others entering the law.
The deal, which is slated to start in November, will mark LegalZoom’s entry into the UK more than a year after Legal Futures first revealed its ambitions. The site will be branded “LegalZoom – in partnership with QualitySolicitors”.
It will offer a wide range of private client and business documents that users can personalise, with local QS firms available to review or help complete the document and provide further face-to-face advice and representation where necessary. As well as the usual kinds of documents online services offer, contracts that such as those for home building projects and for au pairs or nannies will be on sale.
Businesses and individuals will also be able to join various subscription-based plans, one of which will provide unlimited access to business legal documents as well as telephone advice and access to the local QS firm.
There will be a heavy focus on the local nature of the QS firms to the consumer as a key differentiator from standard DIY and online legal services. They will be encouraged to have their document reviewed or even completed by the local firm.
At the same time, there will be a range of services to allow consumers and businesses to commence litigation themselves and then obtain support, advice and representation as necessary from their local QS firm. This will include divorce and ancillary relief, and also a special small claims instigation service.
QS chief executive Craig Holt said: “Making high-quality, personalised legal solutions this quick, accessible and convenient has the potential to completely revolutionise the way people and businesses deal with legal needs in the UK.”
LegalZoom co-founder Eddie Hartman added: “We are confident consumers and businesses will be extremely impressed with the high quality of our online legal solutions. More importantly, when so few people know where to turn for legal help, this is an ideal way to begin a long-term relationship with a local solicitor; specifically, a QualitySolicitor.”
LegalZoom will support its launch with television advertising, as it does in America, and may do some joint advertising with QS.
In any case, the next QS advertising campaign begins on 1 October, Legal Futures can reveal. As well as high-profile TV slots such as during Downton Abbey, there will be an outdoor campaign which Mr Holt said will be “openly ‘anti-supermarket law’, as well as ‘anti-bank law’ and ‘anti-breakdown company law’… Legal services offered by supermarkets and others will be faceless and entirely remote and miss the crucial local, personal element”.
Mr Holt said QS is now in over 400 locations and is working with LegalZoom to “research and identify suitable law firms in those remaining areas without a current QualitySolicitors firm, in order to ensure this partnership has comprehensive nationwide coverage”.
He added: “Those firms selected to apply to join the panel will be notified in the coming weeks. This is one of a number of exciting panel opportunities we expect to conclude in the coming months on behalf of our member firms, secured by virtue of being the only legal brand with an extensive local presence.”
Craig Holt and Chas Rampenthal of LegalZoom will be speaking at the Legal Futures conference, The cutting edge of law, on 19 November. The early bird discount period ends on Monday. For more information, click here.