Law Firm Sues Thomson Reuters Over Failure to Launch New FindLaw Website After Exchanging 134 Emails

BY Jason Bland

This case is a paperless file UWY-CV24-6078305-S MOORE, OBRIEN & FOTI v. THOMSON REUTERS Et Al

The lawsuit filed by Connecticut-based law firm Moore, O’Brien & Foti outlines some nightmares experienced during their website development project with FindLaw. We’re going to talk about:

  • What the plaintiff is accusing FindLaw / Thompson Reuters of doing (or not doing.)
  • And some tips to help your law firm avoid a bad web design experience.


Connecticut-based law firm Moore, O’Brien & Foti has filed a lawsuit against Thomson Reuters and its subsidiary FindLaw, alleging a string of failures that left the firm without a functional website despite paying substantial fees. The case, filed on May 23, 2024, in the Superior Court of Connecticut, sheds light on the potential pitfalls law firms face when selecting a law firm marketing partner and website service provider.

A Year of Frustration

Moore, O’Brien & Foti’s troubles began in March 2023 when they entered into a contract with Thomson Reuters for the development of a new law firm website. The agreement stipulated a monthly fee of $2,336.03. According to court documents, the firm expected a swift and professional overhaul of their online presence. Instead, according to the lawsuit (which you can view here) they encountered delays and unfulfilled promises.

The lawsuit alleges that despite repeated requests and a staggering 134 email communications, FindLaw failed to implement necessary changes and updates to the website. The law firm contends that these delays were not only frustrating but also detrimental to their business operations.

On February 23, 2024, Moore, O’Brien & Foti asked FindLaw to launch the updated website despite several unresolved issues. When the request went unheeded, the firm sent a notice of material breach on March 4, 2024, citing specific contractual violations and demanding contract termination along with a pro rata refund. FindLaw’s silence in response to this notice exacerbated the situation.

Breach of Contract and Unjust Enrichment

The complaint outlines several breaches of the Website Contract. Key among them is FindLaw’s failure to deliver services within a commercially reasonable time and to issue a pro rata refund for services not rendered. The lawsuit claims these failures are direct violations of the contract's terms and conditions.

Additionally, Moore, O’Brien & Foti have accused Thomson Reuters and FindLaw of unjust enrichment. The law firm argues that they paid for services they never received, benefiting the defendants unjustly. Despite paying over $28,000, the firm never saw their new website go live.

Legal Implications and Industry Impact

This case underscores the importance of clear communication with your firm's marketing partner, adherence to contractual obligations, and responsive customer service in client-provider relationships. For law firms, a reliable and functional website is not just a digital presence but a critical component of client engagement and service delivery. It also can be a powerful lead generator and source of new business for your firm.

How to avoid a failure to launch

The lawsuit shines an unflattering light on one of the largest legal marketing companies in the industry and it might have some law firm's rethinking if going with a big corporation is better than a small agency.

Bigger Law Firm Magazine has been covering legal marketing for over a decade. Based on that experience, here are some tips to avoid having to file a lawsuit just to get your website launched.

Work with a Small to Midsized Dedicated Agency: Smaller, specialized agencies often provide more personalized and attentive service compared to larger corporations. A dedicated agency with a small team can offer a tailored approach, ensuring your specific needs are met without getting lost in the shuffle of bigger clients. Plus, small and midsized law firm marketing agencies typically enjoy lower employee attrition which means you get to build relationships with a consistent team that knows you and how your firm works.

Clear and Comprehensive Contracts: Ensure that the contract details every aspect of the project, including timelines, deliverables, and procedures for handling changes and updates. This clarity helps set expectations and provides a clear framework for accountability.

Effective Communication: Regular, transparent communication is crucial. Establish a single point of contact within the agency who is responsible for updates and addressing concerns. This reduces the risk of miscommunication and ensures your project receives the attention it deserves.

Post-Launch Support: Ensure the agency offers robust post-launch support. Websites require ongoing maintenance, updates, and security checks. A dedicated agency will provide these services, ensuring your website remains functional and secure long after the initial launch.

Performance Metrics and Accountability: Set clear performance metrics and milestones. Regularly review progress against these metrics to ensure the project stays on track. If issues arise, address them promptly with the agency to avoid prolonged delays.

While it is unfortunate that Moore, O’Brien & Foti had this experience, hopefully this can be a learning experience for other firms to avoid a negative experience when building a new website.

MOORE, OBRIEN & FOTI v. THOMSON REUTERS Et Al was filed in the Waterbury Judicial District of the State of Connecticut, case number UWY-CV24-6078305-S.

Jason Bland

Jason Bland is a Co-Founder of Custom Legal Marketing and a regular contributor to Bigger Law Firm Magazine. He focuses on strategies for law firms in highly competitive markets. He's a contributor on, is a member of the Forbes Agency Council, Young Entrepreneurs Council, and has been quoted in Inc. Magazine, Business Journals, Above the Law, and many other publications.


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