In response to my post about the unauthorized practice of law, Andrew Perlman sent me a copy of his recent article, Towards the Law of Legal Services. This is an excellent piece, with several thoughtful insights. Andy suggests that, rather than continue fruitless attempts to define the "practice of law," we should identify the different legal services that consumers need, decide who should be authorized to perform each those services, and determine the appropriate regulation (if any) for those providers. This nuanced "law of legal services" would replace the binary "law of lawyering."
I like Andy's proposal for the reasons I explain below. I also explore the role that legal educators could--and should--play in achieving this reform.