Unbundling legal services is a term we lawyers have attached to the idea of assisting consumers by providing, by agreement, less than the typical traditional "turn key" legal service. This might involve drafting documents for a pro se litigant to take to court themselves or giving a client a training session on how to represent themselves effectively in small claims court.

In my view, for a variety of reasons, there will be more of this type of service provided by lawyers in the future. One obvious reason is that this method can be much more afforable than the lawyer going to the courthouse, as in the above examples. Some aspects of this practice have been controversial, with opponents complaining it is unfair for a litigant to appear to be "on their own" when they have had assistance. But there are a lot of reasons why this practice will grow and not all of the reasons are economic, but that is for another blog post. To me then the question is will these services be provided by lawyers with competence, training and ethical standards or by anonymous websites or shady characters operating in gray areas with no accountability, rules or regulations? (I do recognize California and some other jurisdictions have somewhat different systems.)

Today your attention is directed to Unbundling in the 21st Century: How to Reduce Malpractice Exposure While Meeting Client Needs in the Oregon State Bar Bulletin, authored by the extremely competent Beverly Michaelis. This is an emerging issue and a good read.