Is LSR Right for You?

November 1st, 2018

By Lori Lindsey

Limited Scope Representation is a wonderful offering for clients because it gives them a convenient and affordable way to get the legal assistance they need from licensed attorneys. Briefly, Limited Scope Representation involves an attorney assisting a client by preparing the necessary paperwork (for example, a will, a divorce petition, an adoption or guardianship petition, or business formation documents) or by providing a brief legal consultation. From there, the client takes over and represents himself or herself in court as a pro se litigant, like for a divorce, or holds onto the documents until they are needed, like for a will.

However, not every matter is suited to Limited Scope Representation.

An example of a matter that is not suited to Limited Scope Representation is a criminal matter. This is because criminal matters are highly complex and require an expert understanding of the law and trial procedure. There are so many small technical parts to a criminal matter that it is advisable for a client to retain traditional, full-scope legal counsel to represent them.

On the other hand, a simple divorce (meaning that the parties mostly agree on the division of property and a child custody arrangement) can easily be handled by a pro se litigant with paperwork prepared by a licensed attorney. Uncontested adoptions and guardianships are also easily handled by pro se litigants.

Some matters don’t involve going to court at all—such as preparing a will or trust, powers of attorney, business formation documents, demand letters. Matters such as these are extremely ripe for using Limited Scope Representation.

Similarly, not every client is suited for Limited Scope Representation.

At MyVirtual.Lawyer, our business model is set up to operate entirely online. Our attorneys have a thirty-minute phone consultation with clients to find out more about the matter and evaluate its appropriateness for Limited Scope Representation. After that, the rest of the matter is handled online through the client portal. This certainly makes it more convenient for the client because the client can fill out the intake form when it is convenient for them, even if that’s at midnight or on the weekends. However, it requires the client to be computer savvy and to have reliable access to the internet.

With Limited Scope Representation, the attorney simply prepares the legal documents. The attorneys are not going to go to court with the clients to file documents or attend hearings on the matter in front of the judge. Once the documents are completed, the client must be able and willing to file them with the court, if needed (for example, divorces, adoptions, and guardianships must be filed at the court; demand letters are mailed to the recipient, and wills are kept until the death of the individual). The attorneys at MyVirtual.Lawyer provide written instructions about how a matter is typically handled in the state, but individual counties might have certain requirements of their own. A client must be able to ask questions at the district court where they are filing to make sure that they have in fact completed all of the necessary steps and that there aren’t any special directions for that county.

If you have a matter suited for Limited Scope Representation, are computer savvy, have a reliable internet connection, can follow directions, and are able to file paperwork at the courthouse (if needed), then Limited Scope Representation just might be right for you. If you have any questions about whether your matter is suited to Limited Scope Representation, please do not hesitate to set up a consultation to ask.