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Executive Summary

McKESSON ENTERS "PHONE IN" PREPAID LEGAL SERVICES FIELD via American Legal Systems acquisition, the company announced in an Oct. 11 release. The 12-year-old Los Angeles-based firm, renamed LawPhone, "has become part of McKesson's Pharmaceutical Card System subsidiary" and will be headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, the release stated. The company had revenues of $500,000 last year. The legal service is currently marketed as "a low cost employee benefit through major insurance carriers, credit unions, trade associations and labor unions in 13 states," according to the release. McKesson plans to expand the service to the public through credit card companies, and offer nationwide service by the end of 1984. The service provides participating individuals with unlimited telephone access to an attorney. McKesson maintains that "telephone service combined with an attorney review of simple documents, writing a letter, making a phone call or preparing a simple will, can resolve virtually all the legal needs of an individual or his dependents." LawPhone attorneys will refer the members who have more specialized needs to area law firms which, under agreement with LawPhone, will provide subscribers with services at 25% below usual client fees. LawPhone attorneys are contracted on a market by market basis to provide the telephone service. A McKesson spokesman explained that individual lawyers and law firms take on LawPhone as secondary functions to their already existing practices. The legal services' principals, Blair Melvin and Stuart Baron, will continue as principals of LawPhone under terms of the acquisition agreement, a McKesson spokesman noted.

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