June 29th, 2012 by Gwynne Monahan
Technology like cloud computing, or devices like the iPad, are often pointed to as examples of disruptors. They demolish the status quo and leave us with a new way of doing things. And nowhere has the status quo been more steadfast than the legal industry.
While cloud computing has done its part to disrupt the legal industry, leading to state bar ethics opinions, and legal education is going through its own transformation, other areas of the industry remain the same. Continuing Legal Education (CLE), for example. Most lawyers get CLE credits by attending conferences like ABA TECHSHOW, or state bar solo and small firm conferences. A fair amount of time is needed to arrange being out of the office, accommodations and travel. And what if you have a trial and can’t make the conference?
As Bob Ambrogi points out on Lawsites, Lawline.com has redesigned, and retooled itself. It’s extensive library of CLE courses is now free. Solo and small firm lawyers, as well as the general public, can browse and access programs in audio or video format. For free. To earn CLE credit, however, payment is required. Lawline lets you watch or listen to the course first, and if you like it and want credit, you just have to click the “Get Credit” button to pay.
While the method is intriguing, it also serves a greater purpose: educating the public.
Technology itself is a disruption, and companies like Lawline leverage it to break out of the status quo and improve access to legal information for all.