Changing the way we regulate the legal profession is an incredibly ambitious undertaking—and one with lofty goals. While states are taking different approaches to their reregulation efforts, the goals are largely the same: to increase access to legal services.

But how will we know whether these efforts are successful in achieving their goals? Data, of course. As states move forward in planning and adopting new regulatory schemes, it is critical that they embed plans for data collection and evaluation from the outset, make the necessary data available to the evaluators, consider what questions they want an evaluation to answer, and make a plan for how they will use the knowledge gained from the data to improve their regulatory approach.

Using data to drive decision-making in the regulatory space is a time-intensive, often challenging process—but it is the only way we can be confident in the conclusions we draw about the efficacy of these innovations.
Logan Cornett, Director of Research
April 2021

March 2021: "Proposal for a Limited Practice Rule to Narrow North Carolina's Access to Justice Gap" by Justice for All Project

March 17:
"Arizona Supreme Court Approves First Alternative Business Structures" from the Arizona Supreme Court

March 22: "The legal system is broken; it's time for change" in the Daily Journal

March 31: "Let the Managers Manage and the Lawyers Lawyer" in JD Supra

April 6: "Global Law Leaders Said to Ignore Big Four Threat — For Now" in Bloomberg Law

April 14: "All Eyes on Utah: Launching the 'First Nonlawyer-Owned' Law Firm" on Law.com

April 15: "Professor Anna Carpenter Named Inaugural Recipient of IAALS’ Alli Gerkman Legal Visionary Award" on IAALS' blog

April 15: "Fingers Crossed for a Sandbox!" on Slaw.com

April 15: "Sometimes a lawyer is overkill" in the Seattle Times

April 22: "Law Society of Ontario approves regulatory sandbox for legal tech" in the CBA/ABC National Magazine
 
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Along with Dr. Alyx Mark, I’m running a long-term study of legal regulatory reform in the U.S. Our study currently focuses on Utah and takes an in-depth look at the creation and evolution of the state’s reform projects. We anticipate it will expand into a comparative project as other states experiment with reform efforts. This project leverages a few key sources of data, including our own interviews with a broad range of reform participants and surveys of key stakeholder groups. We began the work just over a year ago with a series of interviews with people involved in the development of Utah’s sandbox and Licensed Paralegal Practitioner programs, as well as reform leaders from states like California, Arizona, and Washington. Ultimately, we want to describe the forces that spark, drive, or constrain changes to how legal services are regulated. We hope our research will add value beyond academic circles and help inform and guide this new frontier in American law. 

Anna Carpenter is the inaugural recipient of IAALS’ Alli Gerkman Legal Visionary Award. The award is designed to encourage and showcase innovators, risk takers, visionaries, and emerging leaders who bring a different perspective and a reform-minded approach to the improvement of our legal system, and who are early in their legal careers.
    IAALS is a national, independent research center dedicated to facilitating continuous improvement and advancing excellence in the American legal system. Our mission is to forge innovative and practical solutions to problems within the American legal system. 


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