If you’re looking for legal advice online, I encourage you to be aware of the risks in putting your information where anyone can find it.
Avvo is a wonderful service for attorneys and the general public. The public is able to see the attorney’s resume and professional standing, and attorneys are able to share their knowledge via legal guides and other posts.
However, I caution anyone from posting specific questions about their problems or their case. The worst thing you can do is write a letter to the Avvo universe (or the Quora universe, or other sites) about your situation, and then sign it with your full name and contact information. I have seen this done over and over again. The best case scenario is that you may get some free advice, and/or an attorney or two may find you and offer to set up a consultation.
Worst case scenarios are far more likely. Please keep a few things in mind before posting your personal legal matters on the internet:
1. Attorneys that you want to hire have experience and reputations that keep them extremely busy. Attorneys you want to hire are not searching the net looking for their next client.
2. Along those lines, the advice you receive via the internet is going to be limited. It is probably only worth what you paid for it, either in terms of a fee for the consultation or your own time and effort to sit down with an attorney.
3. A consultation online is not the same thing as a consultation in person! Injury attorneys typically offer free consultations. But there is a vast difference between two people sitting down to discuss all pertinent details, being fully focused on the matter, vs. an exchange in a public chat room (and Avvo questions and answers are essentially public chat rooms).
4. Once your personal business is out there, it’s there for anyone to find – opposing counsel included.
5. Outside of the legal world, you may be setting yourself up to be found by predators. For example, if I read a post from Jane Doe, jdoe@email, (xxx) yyy-zzzz, who lives at 1234 Lane in Fresno, California begging for help about her very specific ailments and concerns, detailing everything, including the parties involved…anyone can read that post. You are opening yourself up for contact by con-artists, scammers and identity thieves.
I probably will not be answering questions on Avvo, either. Even if a posted question is somewhat general and anonymous, I would hate to receive partial information, and then give bad guidance! Many attorneys do participate in these forums and they offer valuable perspectives. But I would prefer to spend my time connecting one-on-one with someone.
My consultations are free, and if you believe you have a claim, I encourage you to contact my office to schedule time for us to discuss your matter. 407-246-8488, 135 East Marks Street, Orlando, Florida.