Peer Review Ratings Explained

by Kathleen Delaney on October 23, 2009 · 12 comments

in martindale.com,Ratings

I wanted to address and hopefully clarify some confusion and misinformation floating around the blogosphere this week regarding fees/options for the display of the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating in 2010.

Starting in January of 2010, the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating will not be displayed on the profiles of lawyers at business to business law firms that are not members of martindale.com. These lawyers are free to promote their rating in their own marketing materials and on their own Web sites regardless of whether or not they subscribe to Martindale-Hubbell – however, a subscription will be needed to display the rating on the martindale.com web site.

The Peer Review Rating is a service that Martindale-Hubbell provides to the Bar.  We know that law firms and lawyers, both private practice and in-house counsel, value this service very highly. Lawyers are objectively rated by peers and receive a rating whether or not they or their firm maintains a paid listing on martindale.com.

Separately, this past summer, we piloted an “Individual Lawyer Package” program. This special program enabled lawyers who see value in Martindale-Hubbell at non-subscribing business to business law firms to benefit from the visibility and the resources available at martindale.com. The Individual Lawyer Package included a full listing and ratings display on the profile for an introductory price of $1,200 (discounted to $599 for the trial). We are evaluating the results of this offer to determine if, and at what price point, to offer a similar package in 2010. Some have confused this $599 pilot program offering as a “replacement” for our standard $59 ratings display fee – this is not the case.

LexisNexis has a strong commitment to the mission of the Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Ratings. Please note that nothing has changed for those law firms already benefiting from a subscription to martindale.com or lawyers.com.

I hope that this post clears things up a bit – and feel free to contact me with any questions…

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Michael Willis wrote onAugust 21, 2012 at 3:25 pm

I am curious when the new rating system will be implemented and completed for all rated lawyers?

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David Harrison wrote onJune 24, 2010 at 6:20 pm

Venality strikes again! You had always been a useful source for helping me to find competent lawyers for clients to contact in fields of law other than my own and in counties other than Northern California. Your new monetary policy effectively deprives the public of this kind of basic information, unless one happens to know a subscriber who is willing to provide this kind of information without charge as a public or private service. I am currently an administrative law judge, not a private practitioner, and I have in the past, without charge, assisted friends and acquaintances in finding qualified counsel for their needs.
Too bad you dropped out of being informative— instead, you’re just selling advertising in the form of your ratings for lawyers that are willing to pay for it. Excuse me — bah humbug!

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Sergey wrote onNovember 2, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Dear Kathleen,

I work for a law company with offices in the UK and Russia. I would like to use the martindale’s marketing solutions but find the website extremely confusing, far beyond my modest abilities. I have sent a request a few weeks ago, but in vain.

Is there any place where I could get information in plain English about the services and costs, in particular: how much does it cost for a non-US law company to be included in the directories and what is the procedure; how can we publish our legal articles, and etc?

With best regards,
Sergey

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John Molinelli wrote onOctober 28, 2009 at 5:40 pm

Hi Kathleen. I am in government now and, as you know, fees for such services are not chargeable to the taxpayer expense. Is this why my name has been removed from the Directory? I can understand not showing the Peer rating but my whole existence? When I was in private practice, I appeared in the registry. Any thoughts on that?

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Kathleen Delaney Kathleen Delaney wrote onOctober 29, 2009 at 12:27 pm

Hey John, thanks for your note! Our team looked into this and your profile should be live tomorrow (our systems update overnight). You were never removed from the directory, per se, but we didn’t know how to display your information after you left your law firm.

What’s even better is that I encourage you to join Martindale-Hubbell Connected (www.martindale.com/connected). You’ll be able to update your profile with current info, connect and collaborate with current & past colleagues as well as broader community. All of this is free, and won’t cost your taxpaying constituency a dime… Let me know if you have any questions…

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Kevin OKeefe wrote onOctober 27, 2009 at 2:05 am

As I understand it Kathleen, after 1/1/2010 there will no display of ratings for any rated lawyer unless they are a subscriber? And that the minimal cost of a listing for an individual lawyer is $599?

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Kathleen Delaney Kathleen Delaney wrote onOctober 27, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Hey Kevin,

Answer to first question: true for lawyers at large law (b2b-type) firms greater than 50 lawyers. Solos and others will be able to pay the $59 fee to have their Rating appear on their profile on either martindale.com or lawyers.com.

As for the second question, the $599 Individual Lawyer price you are referencing is not available at the moment. It was something we trialed to a very select group of prospects in June-Sept.

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Kathleen Delaney Kathleen Delaney wrote onOctober 26, 2009 at 12:23 pm

Hi Steve, thanks for you note.

Sounds like we need to have someone sit down and show you just what a subscription to MH can do for you. We get that LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are relevant and doing great stuff. But for someone in a practice like yours, you would really benefit from partnering with MH promote your website and profile to drive more quality leads to your firm. In addition to the exposure firms receive by displaying their profile on Lawyers.com – the legal web site most visited by consumers searching for legal services – you would also benefit from our seasoned digital marketing team to create and market your website on Google and other search engines. Also, as part of your MH partnership, you will be included in Martindale.com, where other lawyers would find you and send referrals. I think you’d be surprised by what we do bring to the table… hope you’d be open to the conversation.

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Kevin OKeefe wrote onOctober 24, 2009 at 6:01 pm

What is the “standard $59 ratings display fee?” What does a lawyer receive for that? Is it a monthly or annial fee. Thanks much.

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Kathleen Delaney Kathleen Delaney wrote onOctober 26, 2009 at 12:24 pm

Hi Kevin,

First off, thanks for your blog post that tipped us off that there was some confusion in the market around this issue.

To your direct question, The “standard $59 ratings display fee” has been a part of all Martindale-Hubbell contracts since 2007. It’s an annual fee that ‘turns on’ the display of a lawyers rating on the MH properties – martindale.com and lawyers.com. This option is no longer available to b-2-b customers that do not subscribe to Martindale-Hubbell.

Kathleen

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Steve Butler wrote onOctober 24, 2009 at 1:59 pm

This is why Martindale is losing relevance in today’s world. By trying to get more and more money out of attorneys for a service that should be provided for free, Lexis is hurting themselves. If you want Martindale to have relevance in today’s world, you should want as many attorneys and individuals to think of your site as the place to turn to for details about attorneys. There shouldn’t be a $60 charge or a $600 charge for a rating to appear on a website. Without attorney profiles, you will not have a website.

With so many better services available for free I would never pay to display a rating that has become meaningless. My generation of attorneys do not rely on Martindale, and with practices like this we never will. It is time for Martindale to start realizing that LinkedIn, Twitter & Facebook are now competition, and they are doing things much better. I have never used Martindale and even the $60 fee had discouraged me from doing so. Spend more time trying to create a great relevant product and less time trying to find more sources of revenue. Things like this make me upset that I even subscribe to Lexis Legal Research Services.

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Lovey Lewis wrote onOctober 28, 2009 at 11:15 am

I’m in total agreement with your thoughts of this website. Especially in the event a potential client is seeking representation from a attorney with expertise in their field of need the attorney will charge this fee back to the client. Presently, I am seeking a Labor attorney with expertise in EEO, Retaliation, Civil Rights and MSPB.

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