Unauthorized Practice of Law

In the past few years, the State Bar has increasingly been investigating and charging attorneys with ethical violations in situations where they involve themselves in “business arrangements” with non-licensed persons, especially where the services provided include loan modification services, debt consolidation and other services related to the purchase, sale or ownership of real estate.

Most attorneys understand that business arrangements with unlicensed persons who prepare common legal forms for the general public without proper supervision or who allow their names to be used on pleadings prepared by unlicensed persons or permit nonlawyers to prepare and file legal applications, pleadings, and other documents have been found to be aiding of the unauthorized practice of law in violation of rule 1-300(A). But sometimes the lines are not so clear and before you know it there’s a serious problem.

As a former Senior State Bar prosecutor, and a legal ethics, professional responsibility and compliance expert, I can assist attorneys in assessing such arrangements before you enter into them and before you’re facing down a State Bar investigation.