Last August, Arizona became the first state to eliminate the ban on non-lawyer ownership of law firms. In ordering that change, as well as a package of additional reforms, the Arizona Supreme Court acted on the recommendations of a task force that had called for fundamental changes in the regulation of legal services, all with the goal of enhancing access to justice.

In its statement announcing the order, the court described its move as making “far-reaching changes that could transform the public’s access to legal services.”

On today’s episode of LawNext, I am joined by Arizona Supreme Court Vice Chief Justice Ann A. Scott Timmer, who was not only among the justices who approved the changes, but who chaired the task force that recommended them. Justice Timmer discusses why the task force recommended such sweeping changes, why the court adopted them, the status of their implementation, and the implications for access to justice.

Justice Timmer was appointed to the Arizona Supreme Court in 2012. Previously, she served on the Arizona Court of Appeals from 2000 to 2012, serving three years as its chief judge, and where she chaired the court’s Legal Services Task Force. She is chair of the Supreme Court’s Attorney Regulation Advisory Committee, a member of the National Conference of Bar Examiners board of trustees and has been elected as a member of The American Law Institute.

Among her many honors, Justice Timmer was named 2020 Woman of the Year by the Arizona Capitol Times and she was recognized as one of the Most Influential Business Women in Arizona in 2020.

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Photo of Bob Ambrogi Bob Ambrogi

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal…

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.