The New York State Bar has filed a resolution with the ABA House of Delegates, to be heard at the Annual Meeting, calling for regulation of online providers of legal documents. The resolution states, in full:
RESOLVED, That the American Bar Association urges states to adopt General Provisions for Regulation of Online Providers of Legal Documents to establish reasonable standards of product reliability and efficacy, provide consumers with information and recourse against abuse, ensure consumers are made aware of the risks of proceeding without attorneys, inform consumers where affordable attorneys can be found, and protect confidential information; and
FURTHER RESOLVED, That until such time as the General Provisions are adopted, online providers of legal documents are encouraged to adopt the Statement of Best Practices to provide a common-sense approach to self-regulation of online providers of legal documents.
The report that accompanies the resolution argues that "there is a need for some form of regulation in order to (i) establish minimum standards of product reliability and efficacy, (ii) provide consumers with information and recourse against abuse, (iii) ensure consumers are made aware of the risks of proceeding without attorneys, (iv) inform consumers how affordable attorneys can be found, and (v) protect consumers’ confidential information."
The ABA annual meeting is in about a week. Stay tuned.
UPDATE (7/26/18): I just heard that the sponsors of the resolution are withdrawing it, but also that they anticipate filing it to be considered at the ABA Midyear Meeting next February. Again, stay tuned...