Friday, August 31, 2012
My friend and former Iowa disciplinary counsel Norman Bastemeyer used to refer to his jurisdiction as the "Advertising Gulag" for its restrictive rules on that area.
Well, the times they are achangin.
Iowa has just adopted advertising rules in line with the ABA Model Rules. The Supreme Court's web page reports:
Today, the Iowa Supreme Court approved amendments to the Iowa Court Rules governing lawyer advertising. The amendments bring the Iowa rules closely in line with the American Bar Association Model Rules of Professional Conduct governing lawyer advertising and communications to the public. The Iowa revision is designed to update, clarify, and strengthen advertising rules in the digital age while providing the public with useful information about Iowa lawyers.
The supreme court has the sole responsibility to admit persons to practice as lawyers in the courts of Iowa, to prescribe rules to supervise lawyer conduct, and to discipline lawyers.
"With more lawyers and citizens using the internet and social media it is important to update the advertising rules to clarify how lawyers can use these new technologies," Chief Justice Mark Cady said. "The ABA model code ensures a continuation of the high ethical standards Iowa lawyers follow, brings Iowa's rules in line with the rules in neighboring states, and will ensure that Iowans in need of legal representation receive reliable information about Iowa lawyers."
Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Wisconsin also follow the current ABA model rules
governing lawyer advertising.