How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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Evan - you are right. This is an outrage. A reasonable consumer would think, "Well, the print book is $25.95, so it would make sense that they would sell me an electronic version for 50% off." Most disguisting of all is that the capsule summary comes free with the print version of full Black Letter book.

Alesai Tounri

What do you expect.
Crooks selling to crooks ( future lawyers )


Alesai: While there is a certain poetry to your comment, which is much appreciated, I should point out to anyone who reads your comment that I only raised the issue of the validity of StoreLaw's business practices and did not conclude that they were crooks. That question is still open. Unless you state otherwise, I'll assume you can't answer it.

The additional question of whether future lawyers are crooks is a matter of opinion. I don't happen to agree with yours, but thanks for reading anyway.

Lauri R.

I'm glad to find that I'm not the only one who has been experiencing the nightmare that is StoreLaw, Inc. I was recommended to buy their Outliner 4.0 software by my first-year law school professor here in CA, and when I paid my money to download the software (versus ordering the CD version), I received the TRIAL version, which is free to everyone. When I wanted to call them to get some phone help, of course I couldn't find a phone number anywhere (I've checked online, directory assistance, etc. etc.)

I called Thomson-West, which StoreLaw was associated with a few years ago, and no one there, even in top management, knows anything about them now. Someone thought they were associated with Aspen Publishers, but no one as Aspen knows about them either.

I've sent dozens of emails to both and, and have only received automated replies. Finally, begging for a communication from a real person, I received an email from, but whoever wrote the email refused to respond to my repeated requests for the CD version of Outliner 4.0 to be mailed to me, and kept trying to get me to download it again, which I explicitly said I did NOT want to do in my multiple emails. This so-called "support" person, who of course never gave his/her name, despite my repeated requests, also said s/he would have a so-called "sales rep" call me, asked for times when they could reach me, and then of course NEVER called me, despite numerous emails where I have begged for them to call me, and where I've also asked for a number which I could call: No one has ever replied to me.

I'm about to call American Express tomorrow to dispute the charge, get a refund, and see if AMEX has a number for them as well. I don't feel like springing for the $10 to get a Dun & Bradstreet report, but in the meantime, with a bit more research tonight, I found the home phone number of the President/Founder, Ross Elgart, and though I'm tempted to call him tonight (around 2am his time), I at least have something resembling integrity, and won't interrupt his beauty sleep (despite the fact that it would be sweet revenge, after the hours and hours I've spent dealing with the complete lack of integrity and non-existent 'customer service' which is the full scope of my horrible experiences with his company!)

I have never had a more negative experience with any company in decades of doing business with all kinds of corporations around the world. My professor is of course appalled, and is looking into recommending similar software from Aspen Publishers, so that she won't keep sending her law students to spend their dollars with StoreLaw.

I would of course love to hear from others who have had any other experiences with this pathetic group, and especially if anyone has a phone number for their offices (which supposedly are located in Boca Raton Florida, although apparently they ship products from Irvine CA, which of course doesn't have a phone number listed either!) It is truly an "outrage", as Mike said a couple of weeks ago on this blog...

Thanks, Lauri

Lauri R.

I did indeed call AMEX today, and they issued a credit for the $35 I paid online for their Outliner 4.0 software (which, as I noted last night, I never received), and AMEX is going to supposedly pursue my concerns with StoreLaw.

To add insult to injury, the only phone number which the AMEX agent has for StoreLaw, which is also printed on my statement, is a number in Irvine CA which has been disconnected/Not In Service! Unbelievable!

By the way, when I found your blog last night (after putting "StoreLaw" into Google and your site came up), I only saw the word "February", and didn't notice that the dates of your previous posts were two years ago, in 2005! (That's why I wrote about Mike's comment being "a couple of weeks ago"!) Oh well, unfortunately the company is still. 2 years later, having major problems of corporate responsibility and user-friendliness -- or the opposite of that!

Btw. most of my other law school classmates who have already purchased the software have not had problems, but NONE of them attempted to communicate with the company by phone or by email; they all received the software by CD in the mail or downloaded it online (like I tried to do), and despite having a few download problems, were able to work it out... God forbid they need to talk to a live person or get anything resembling tech support or customer support... At that point, they'll obviously encounter the ridiculous morass I've found, which I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy!

Anyone have suggestions about the value of trying to relate all this to the Better Business Bureau for Florida or any other group like that?

Thanks again, Lauri


These lawyers give the profession a bad name.

They jerked me around when my email changed and I tried to activate
programs. The program kept asking me to get a key from
the original email which was closed.

I called and after several attempts talked to a Ross Something, Esq.

He assured me he would send me all the links.

He never did and the phone was never answered and messages never returned again. disappeared from the Internet.

I hope these miscreants lose their licenses for fraud.

May they not have a Happy New Year.

Prison is more like it.


I have been using StoreLaw Outliner 4.0 for about 1 1/2 years. It took some time to push myself to really use it, but after I did I loved the product.
The PROBLEM is as a company they stink like a skunk after a workout. I once had a crash of my laptop and needed to reload the program. Since their Access database is locked with a password, there is no other way to get to the info if you have a crash. It took me 4 months, Yes I said 4, To get them to give me Registration info so I could activate the product on my new laptop. Well now I have switched Law Schools and had to buy a new laptop. Now I have been trying for longer than 4 months to get a registration number and in all that time I have not recieved ANY emails except the auto-response. As much as I like the product, I can not live with that. I am going to have to export all the data and put into something else.

My other issue with them was that during midterms I decided to try their Multiple Choice and Essay test aids and found after spending the money that they had only given about 4 or 5 questions for each product. Contacting them for this was just as fruitless. I did have the charges reversed. Good old Amex!

This is no way to do business. I strongly recommend that EVERYONE stay away from them and to those of you I have suggested outliner to in the past, I AM SOOOOO SORRY!!!!
Thanks, David


I'm with David. The software is great (well, almost great, it's not 100% professional and robust, but it's got a good basic design and was on it's way, maybe 2 versions away, from being a great piece of software).

The company is terrible. Well, it was, until it went out of business. I had a similar experience to David, except that I regularly (every day) backed up my outlines so I could restore them if the software crashed. I also hacked the old access database so I could access and alter the information directly if needed. Unfortunately, I have since changed operating systems and the company went out of business (as far as I can tell). So now I can't use the software because when I reinstall it, it doesn't let me use it without registering. My old registration codes don't work and there's nobody there anymore to respond to this concern.

Anybody know any other software that functions similarly? I especially like the mulit-pane feature, which is missing in most of the top competitors. It allows me to write a brief using 1 pane for notes, then drafts, then refine my points into a solid outline without losing the work I used to get there (which I often need to refer back to).

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