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Victims of Accidents Should Be Taken Care Of and Not Harassed

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The young boy who suffered from a serious brain damage because of a car accident was the reason why his mother received so many mailed solicitations from different lawyers asking the price that she wanted to get out of this case. Would parents who are distressed be offended by this inquiry for they were asked in a pushy manner? Definitely, no questions asked. Do methods like these bring discredit on the legal profession as a whole?Very much, yes. At the urging of the state’s bar association, the Florida Supreme Court decided to try to do something positive about the situation by taking a relatively modest and welcome initiative, in response to this situation. It announced that 30 days would be the waiting period for personal injury lawyers before they can actually solicit business by mail intended for victims of accidents or their relatives.The constitutionality of the rule however was challenged by a referral service whose main business is to look for clients to be referred to these personal injury lawyers by soliciting accident victims and their families. The Florida rule was overturned by the US District Court in Tampa, Florida and declared it a violation on lawyer’s rights to freedom of speech, under the First Amendment as applied to the States through the 14th Amendment. On the basis of the interpretation of the US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit in Atlanta of US Supreme Court precedents over the past two decades, those who have granted lawyers the right to advertise their services.Fortunately, the Florida rule has been upheld on a 5 to 4 vote by the US Supreme Court. Two convincing justifications covered the implementation of the Florida rule according to a female justice, while the case is being written. To protect personal injury victims against invasive, unsolicited contact by personal injury lawyers or their authorized agents is the first one.The second one on the other aims to prevent the state licensed legal profession from getting angry because the practice of direct solicitation took place only days after accidents. As what the lady justice said, a form of commercial speech is advertising which is subjected to reasonable government regulations. She added that the Florida rule somehow imposes a mild restriction that doesn’t touch a lot of alternative channels for communicating the needed information about attorneys.With this, she said that Florida allows lawyers to advertise on radio and on prime time television as well as in newspapers and other media. However, lawyers may be able to rent space on billboards as well as to other forms of outdoor advertisements. Also, letters may be sent to the general population or to some discrete segments of society.Their contact details are available in the listing under lawyers in the telephone directory.

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