It can sometimes be challenging to find a Pennsylvania lawyer, especially if you are working within time constraints.  Attorney referral services can be a way to quickly find a lawyer to help you with your legal issue. 

Attorney referral services are also called LRS, which is short for “Lawyer Referral Services”.  The Pennsylvania Bar Association is a statewide organization that offers lawyer referral services.  Pennsylvania’s LRS program covers just over half of all Pennsylvania counties.  If you need lawyer referral services in an uncovered area, you may wish to try contacting your local county bar association.  For example, the Philadelphia Bar Association and the Bar Association of Montgomery County also do lawyer referrals.

For specific legal inquiries, you can contact an attorney referral service that is more related to your needs.  Many different private associations can be found in the state of Pennsylvania.  The South Asian Bar Association (SABA Philly) and the Middle District Bankruptcy Bar Association are some examples of groups that offer more directed lawyer referral services.  However, these types of associations tend to be smaller and may have a more limited attorney base to draw from.

The majority of LRS programs operate by phone, though some of them use online internet services to make the referral.  The referral procedure typically begins when you call the service and provide them with a basic rundown of your legal issue.  The LRS association will then give you an attorney’s e-mail, whom you may contact for initial consultation.  Be aware that there are usually fees involved for the contact information and for the initial consultation. 

All lawyers who are participants in a lawyer referral service program must abide by Pennsylvania Rules of Professional Conduct.  These Rules are a comprehensive body of regulations that cover many aspects of attorney conduct, including fees and referrals.  Also, every LRS organization should have some sort of reporting mechanism for clients to report any concerns regarding referrals.    

You may wish to do some general research on any attorney referral service that interests you. You may also consider using LegalMatch to present your case to Pennsylvania lawyers - there's no cost to do so and you may get an offer of services within minutes or hours of posting it.  Lawyer Referral Services is a helpful website that makes side-by-side comparisons of different lawyer referral services.