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Law Firm Criticized for Client Recruiting Technique

By George Khoury, Esq. on May 04, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

While marketing is important for law firms, the line between legal marketing and improper solicitation can often be a little bit fuzzy. When a law firm wades into the fuzzy areas, it's probably a smart move to take a step back and reassess the whole firm's marketing strategy.

In addition to a potential bar complaint, firms that employ questionable tactics to recruit clients could wind up the subject of a New York Times national news piece. And while you might think any press is good press, there are clearly exceptions to that rule. Potential clients will research their prospective lawyers online, and news stories that make it sound like your firm was exploiting clients and mass shooting victims is not what any firm wants a potential client to see.

Gunning for Shooting Victims

According the New York Times report, the law firm represented survivors of the Pulse nightclub shooting, and used those clients to help recruit other mass shooting survivors and victims. One such former client explained that he and others were flown to meet with other survivors under the guise that they were going to help by providing support. But when they arrived, they were explicitly told to try to convince their fellow survivors to sign up as clients of the law firm.

One of the law firm's non-lawyer employees even managed a Facebook page that purported to support victims of mass shootings, but really was designed to funnel victims into the law firm's client pool. One of the former clients shared explicit, direct messages from that employee, which ask the former client to reach out to a victim of a different shooting whom he had never even met.

Groff-ed Again

For the Law Offices of Conrad J. Bennedetto, this is not the first time that this non-lawyer employee, John Groff, has landed the firm in the limelight for the wrong reasons. Previously, it was alleged that Groff offered to exchange his sexual services for the firm's services. Sadly, that matter settled (confidentially) before a public trial could let loose the seemingly salacious details. 

As of yet, there has been no news of any actions being taken against the firm as a result of the most recent allegations.

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