Past advertising campaigns were to increase further the number of callers and included local and regional newspapers and radio, planned one-stop-shops and the concept of the “virtual law firm”. There were plans to renew advertisements in doctor’s surgeries and Advice Centres nationwide. Importantly those outlets were to promote the fact that the public can gain legal advice outside of normal business hours, which suits them. Some of those aspirations remain true today, but a major overhaul of the business, from top down, means that it has a different look today. It is worthwhile revisiting Telephone Legal Advice’s history.
Words like “Quest” and “Conquest” might provide reasonable allowance for equating Telephone Legal Advice’s history with similitude to the conquest of the Wild West. Excuse the connotations if they do not work for you:
The explorer phase
Our Chief Executive Officer is attributed with the vision, foresight and entrepreneurial flair to have surveyed the legal market in which he was both a consumer of legal services and subsequently as a provider. Tenacity is an apt term, in what was a traditional and fairly stayed legal profession.
He recognised a niche in the market for the provision of telephone legal advice and set about researching the sector, using his own knowledge as consumer and provider. There was much terrain to be explored and negotiated.
The pioneer phase
He recognised some further hurdles as he set about building a team of “advisors” to help him negotiate the territory. Not insignificant were the formidable and extensive Rules and Regulations governing the legal profession and time and time again, coming up against “no you can’t” – even from his own well-meaning team”
The gold digger phase
Undeterred and undaunted, he knew well that there could be no accumulation without speculation and so launched the telephone legal advice service in 1993, hoping to justify his intuition.
The cavalry phase
Modest services at the start, adverts were based on outlets through GP surgeries, Advice Bureau’s, Telephone Directories and the likes. Yet the small team saw exponential growth way beyond the boundaries of Greater London, such that within years it was covering Scotland & Northern Ireland, encompassing callers from all sectors of society gaining legal advice from Telephone Legal Advice’s own Barristers and Solicitors.
Repeat caller business became the mainstay of a steady stream of calls, even when capacity to cope with the influx of calls threatened the quality of the service, such that adverts had to be reduced.
The settler phase
The concept worked. It was now tried and tested. Thousands and thousands of calls and years later meant future growth and controlled development required an overall of the service, once it had bedded in. It was a simple matter to leave it as it was. After all it worked, and very well!
The stakeholder phase
Caller needs have always dictated the change. They confirmed and endorsed the need for such a revolutionary, user friendly and convenient service, which was welcomed as it challenged the mainstream. It brought Access-to-Justice to a wider audience – the stakeholders.
Some years ago refining and moving the service to the next level, was commenced and so all adverts ceased, so as to embark on that task. We are presently coming out of that phase with the launch of significantly expanded services, some 20 years since the original service was first launched.
Legal Compliance Statement
All Barrister advisors are regulated by the Bar Council. All Solicitor advisors are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. All other Legal Advisors are regulated by their respective Legal Bodies worldwide. All calls to the Premium Rate Telephone Legal Advice service are charged at a per minute rate from a UK domestic telephone line, with variations from destination and or legal jurisdictions. Call costs from other service providers may vary and calls from mobile phones may be considerably higher, you are advised to check with your telephone service provider. Calls may be monitored and or recorded for training and quality purposes. Telephone Legal Advice, access justice worldwide, we cover most areas of law and a variety of legal jurisdictions globally.