Utah’s new regulatory sandbox is off to a strong start with Rocket Lawyer as the first large legal services provider to reveal it’s going to take part in the program. Bloomberg Law reported on the announcement and noted that four other smaller legal services providers have signed on to handle consumer bankruptcy and family law matters. In its announcement, Rocket Lawyer noted that it is uniquely poised to work in Utah given its offices in Ogden, and having experience running a similar program in the U.K. “Unprecedented times call for new solutions,” said Charley Moore, founder and CEO of Rocket Lawyer. “There is no better time than now to reduce the friction for legal service providers.” Rocket Lawyer | Bloomberg Law 

Note, back in 2015 and 2016, the ABA Journal reported that several American companies, including Rocket Lawyer, were experimenting with alternative business services in the U.K. It’s a good bet that those companies will be among the first to apply to provide services in Utah, Arizona and whoever is next. Rocket Lawyer also joined with the ABA  for a short-lived pilot of on-demand legal advice service for small businesses before backlash from the organized bar tanked the partnership. ABA Journal | Law.com

Litigation finance has a public perception problem according to Bloomberg Law’s 2nd Annual Litigation Finance Survey. Some 87% of firms and finance companies involved in LitFi have a positive perception and view the option as enabling better access to justice. Yet, of those without LitFi experience, 34% have a positive view and 44% a negative view. Bloomberg Law wonders if the pandemic will change the equation. “As pandemic-related contract and insurance claims increase, litigation finance may level the playing field for potential claim holders. It is also an option for businesses needing funds to defend against lawsuits that could otherwise push them into bankruptcy.” Bloomberg Law

“Rise of the Warrior Cop” by Radley Balko

Reason magazine published an in-depth interview with Washington Post reporter Radley Balko who, as the publication notes, was ahead of his time reporting on the militarization of police and the critical need for criminal justice reform. Among the findings and observations, Balko shares that when he studied 100 no-knock warrants in Little Rock, Arkansas, about 95% were illegal. Balko said every warrant he looked at had boilerplate language that said all drug dealers are a threat to attack police, dispose of evidence, or flee if the police knock and announce. “The Supreme Court has explicitly said that that’s illegal,” Balko said. “The remarkable thing is the judges [who] were signing off on these warrants were completely oblivious to the fact that they were signing illegal warrants.”

Balko added that in Little Rock, police “were using explosives to blow doors off the hinges. If somebody’s on the other side of that door, they’re lucky to be alive.” Reason 

The National Juvenile Justice Center reports a disturbing trend in some parts of Oregon, with some youth entering into court agreements without ever speaking to an attorney. In other cases, youth charged with misdemeanors are routinely not using lawyers. And similar situations with probation violations. “What we saw was that, despite strong advocacy in some places, a young person’s ability to be defended strongly really depended on where they lived,” Mary Ann Scali, NJDC’s executive director, said. OPB (Oregon Public Broadcasting)