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  • April 06, 2022

    Referral Service Connects Lawyers with Clients Virtually

    The State Bar's Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) helps you expand your practice. Join now and get April, May, and June free in 2022.
    lawyer talking on phone

    April 6, 2022 – Whether you want to grow your practice with new clients, add a new area of practice, or expand into another market, the State Bar of Wisconsin’s Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) connects lawyers with prescreened clients who have indicated a willingness and ability to pay for your legal services.

    LRIS is looking for lawyers of all levels of experience for its referral service. Memberships run annually from July 1 to June 30. Join now through June 2023, and receive registration free for April, May, and June this year.

    “LRIS is ideal for attorneys who lack the time to market their services or who are new to a region or an area of law,” says Laura Skilton Verhoff, chair of the LRIS committee.

    Legal services can be inaccessible to people for a number of reasons. LRIS offers attorneys the ability to bridge service gaps in their communities.

    “LRIS engages its members in needed public service while simultaneously giving them a way to increase their client base. LRIS therefore offers its members the ability to provide support to members of their communities,” says Skilton Verhoff.

    How LRIS Works

    Every year, LRIS legal assistants field more than 20,000 contacts from members of the public who are seeking legal information and referrals to attorneys.​

    When members of the public contact LRIS via the "I Need a Lawyer" LRIS​ webpage on, experienced legal assistants conduct a careful screening before referring matters to member attorneys. In 2021, assistants received 24,858 contacts that resulted in 12,735 referrals.

    When you become a LRIS panel member, you choose the areas of practice – up to 60 specific areas – and the geographic locations for client referrals, and choose whether to receive referrals only by phone, or by phone and online.

    LRIS Online Portal

    Panel members have access to LRIS Online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and there is no additional charge for participation. The portal allows panel members to more efficiently track LRIS referrals and manage their memberships.

    Accessible from anywhere via an internet connection, the portal allows you to:

    • get referrals via email;

    • receive automatic case tracking and status reporting;

    • keep track of settlement fees and payments;

    • submit quarterly reports digitally;

    • edit your demographic profile and update your availability to take referrals; and

    • renew your LRIS membership and pay online.

    New for LRIS Panel Members: Showcase your Superstar Legal Knowledge

    LRIS is partnering with the Wisconsin Newspaper Association to produce and distribute a new legal column – “Know Your Legal Rights” – to its 200+ member media outlets across the state.

    Panel members are invited to serve as a subject matter experts by writing for this column (500 to 800 words). Stories may appear in print, online, or both in publications across the state.

    Examples of topics include:

    • My Neighbor’s Tree Damaged my Fence, What are my Legal Rights?

    • The Legal Rights of Residential Tenants May Vary by County

    • My New Car is a Lemon, What are my Legal Rights?

    • Why Parents Need a Will to Establish Legal Guardians

    • Recreational Immunity: Laws May Protect Landowners from Snowmobile Accidents.

    A great example is an article on determining child custody in Wisconsin, by Waukesha attorney AnneMarie Sylla.

    “We believe this is an excellent PR opportunity for participating members and will be a great service to Wisconsin residents looking for topical legal help,” said Katie Wilcox, State Bar customer and consumer services manager.

    Know that:

    • Interested authors will be provided a copy of their writing guidelines and tips, an editorial calendar with deadlines for each topic, and a sample article.

    • Authors will be selected on a first come, first served basis. If you are interested in writing for more than one topic, please indicate your first, second, third etc. choices.

    • This is free!

    Please contact Mike Wiltse, State Bar public relations specialist, or 608-354-6385, to indicate your interest or ask questions.

    How to Join LRIS: Join Now and Get Up To 3 Months Free

    For more information and to join, visit the Lawyer Referral and Information Service webpage. There you’ll find membership rates and learn the rules of panel membership.

    Registrations renew July 1. Join now through June 2022, and receive registration free for April, May, and June this year. New lawyers receive a further discount off the registration price.

    Type Rate
    LawyerOne Year (expires June 30, 2022)$125
    Two Years (expires June 30, 2023) Register through June 2024 and save 10%$225
    New Lawyer* (expires June 30, 2022)$105
    Lawyer Admitted in 2022 (expires June 30, 2023)$60

    *New Lawyer: lawyer admitted to practice between July 1, 2020, and December 31, 2021

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