Crowdsourced Legal Advice

By on Aug 11, 2011

There are a number of websites that insurance agencies can go to ask questions and receive answers, such as LinkedIn Answers and Yahoo! Answers. But where do you go to ask a legal question about your agency?

A recently launched website called LawPivot hopes to provide the answer. Literally. It is a legal Q&A site in which small and medium-sized businesses can receive crowdsourced and confidential legal answers from relevant lawyers, and in the process find the right lawyers for all their needs.

This is how it works:

Step 1: You draft your confidential legal question and post it on the LawPivot website by entering the general subject matter and then your confidential legal question. You then tag your question with up to five relevant keywords so LawPivot can begin identifying the best lawyers for your question.

Step 2: LawPivot uses its lawyer search engine to find relevant lawyers that have signed up for a LawPivot account to answer your question — you can also specify characteristics that are most important to you, such as fast response or most detailed response. A list of up to 10 lawyers is displayed and you can then choose to send your question to all 10, or only to specific lawyers you choose based on LawPivot’s results and the lawyers’ profiles. For example, you might want to limit the responses to lawyers located in your state.

Step 3: You will be notified by email every time a lawyer has responded back to your question with their confidential answer. Both you and the lawyer can send follow-up messages to provide clarifications as needed.

You can ask questions in the various legal areas of concern for your company, ranging from contracts, employment and labor matters, stock issues, intellectual property, real estate to immigration, just to name a few.

For lawyers, LawPivot is a way for them to better market themselves to businesses like insurance agencies by answering questions and creating an online reputation. For agencies, LawPivot is a way to test drive a lawyer to determine if you would want to hire them for more in-depth work.

In addition to the confidential answers, LawPivot Public Answers is a collaborative legal answers site for businesses and lawyers to view general legal questions and expert responses, and to participate in these discussions. LawPivot Public Answers is free to access, and open to the public.

Following is a list of the states where LawPivot is notopen for attorneys as of right now. However, businesses can ask questions regardless of the states they are in.

Arizona, Delaware, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Nebraska,
New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, South Carolina,Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington


LawPivot is interesting both as a clear business model – charging money in a clearly-defined vertical, as opposed to the usual ad-supported business of general interest question sites – and as a potential shape of things to come. If it works for law, why not consulting or even financial services and insurance?


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