In 2006, the Florida Supreme Court added a "licensing" scheme for attorney advertising on television or radio to its existing panoply of attorney advertising regulations. The new rule imposes a prior restraint on all radio and television ads by Florida attorneys: every ad must run the gauntlet of the Bar's censors prior to airing, and the ad may not air unless its content meets with the approval of the censors. Not content with its foray into regulating the broadcast medium, the Florida Supreme Court is now poised to add a rule that will regulate attorney speech on the Internet much more extensively than ever before. In the Spring of 2007, the Bar adopted a proposed rule that will allow it to regulate a much broader swath of attorney speech on the Internet.
This Article conducts an in-depth analysis of Florida's new and proposed attorney advertising rules and demonstrates that they are not only unconstitutional, but also fail to serve consumers' needs for legal services. The Article first provides the background necessary to assess the constitutionality of the rules and then addresses point-by-point their many constitutional flaws, both procedural and substantive. Additionally, this Article shows that Florida's new medium-specific regulations are flawed in their conception.
Lyrissa Barnett Lidsky & Tera Jckowski Peterson, Medium-Specific Regulation of Attorney Advertising: A Critique, 18 U. Fla. J.L. & Pub. Pol'y 259 (2007), available at http://scholarship.law.ufl.edu/facultypub/206