Badass personal injury lawyer Superbowl ad analyzed

Jamie Casino (whose surname at birth was possibly "Biancosino") is a personal injury lawyer in Savannah, Georgia, who bought airtime during the Superbowl for this totally badass advertisement telling the story of how he switched from criminal defense to personal injury after his brother and his brother's friend were murdered and the local law dismissed them as "no innocent victims." In a great Lowering the Bar post, Kevin Underhill investigates the ethics of the ad, and explains how it stays on the right side of the law.

For one thing, ads can get a lawyer in trouble if they are "likely to create an unjustified expectation about results the lawyer can achieve...." Here, I don't think the Super Bowl ad does this—I'm thinking more of the earlier one that briefly appears in which Casino is throwing money (gold pieces, even!) at the camera. That might be interpreted to suggest that hiring Casino is a sure-fire way to get paid, but that is probably well within the kind of "puffery" that is allowed in advertising.

Then there is the fact that the name of the firm is "Casino Law." Yes, it is named after Jamie Casino, but "Casino" may not be his real name, at least judging from the fact that his brother's last name was "Biancosino." If he changed it to suggest hiring him would result in a big "payoff," that might be an issue, but if anything I think it weighs in his favor because winning at a casino involves significant risk. People may not realize that, but that's not his fault.

As Rolling Stone suggests, it is a little problematic that the ad depicts him desecrating a grave and smashing a grave marker...

Some Words About That Badass Lawyer Ad [Lowering the Bar]