Hot answers tagged

82

Technically anyone can sit on a jury. Lawyers are not automatically excluded from juries anymore, as being called for jury duty is a right and a duty that the law abhors automatically excluding people from. That is the official line on this. However, in reality, lawyers will always be stricken from serving by one of the lawyers trying the case. Each lawyer ...


65

Don't write back to them. Pass any direct communication on to your lawyer and let your lawyer handle it.


48

Another possible answer: The legal profession is a cartel, protected by laws. "Unlicensed/Unauthorized Practice of Law" is a big enough issue that its acronym (UPL) is well known among people who discuss law. Non-lawyers may decline to provide legal advice because they don't want to be charged with UPL. Likewise, as a matter of policy (at least in the U.S....


43

In some jurisdictions it's against the code of ethics. For example, in the united-states, Model Rule of Professional Conduct 5.4(b) says: A lawyer shall not form a partnership with a nonlawyer if any of the activities of the partnership consist of the practice of law. The idea has to do with independence: Lawyers are officers of the court and—as members ...


41

The law is known to everyone in theory. But as various people are said to have said, In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not. Starting from zero and actually finding out what law is applicable to your circumstances is not a trivial matter. To have an answer you can rely on you need to do the following: Find out what law ...


37

In most jurisdictions, practicing law without a bar license is a serious offence, which, inter alia, is the primary reason why a non-lawyer would use this disclaimer. Lawyers also use this disclaimer to avoid any 'constructive implication' of attorney-client relationship.


32

There is a firm difference between giving advice on "what the best decision is likely to be" and "what decision to make". The former is what lawyers must do, which comes from: Conduct and Client Care Rules: Whatever legal services your lawyer is providing, he or she must— discuss with you your objectives and how they should best be achieved: ...


27

This is not legal advice. If I say "this is not legal advice", and you rely on what I say, and try to sue me if everything goes pear shaped, then a judge will laugh you out of court. If I don't say "this is not legal advice", there is a 99% chance that the judge will laugh you out of court. I'll cover the one percent.


21

Your lawyer will likely advise you to keep direct communication to a minimum. There is good reason for this – they can cherry-pick from what you say, to find only those aspects of your communication that work in their favor, and potentially find ways to spin other aspects of your communication in their favor also. Therefore generally speaking, any ...


21

There are four similar answers here already, all about why it's a good idea to involve an expert. There isn't much engagement with the apparent discrepency you're asking about; the discrepency between high standards of qualification for lawyers and the suggestion that the law is understandable for the typical citizen implied by the claim that "ignorance is ...


16

I'm a high school student. I've written around 43 answers so far, but there's a couple reasons I wouldn't want to answer the question... The situation is too specific There's too many details to consider, and lots of precedence that may change my thought Different jurisdictions Canadian law (which I know lots about), can be very different from Dutch, or ...


13

There's a few reasons, and I'm not sure that they've been covered thoroughly. Also, note that this relates to common law and an understanding of Western societies, rather than civil law systems. We live in an incredibly litigious society Making it clear that you should ask a lawyer, in the minds of those saying it, dispels the notion that you might infer a ...


13

Show the correspondence to your lawyer and discuss what to do So, you've both hired lawyers and that means that your respective lawyers will be looking to protect your legal interests. They should, but may not, be protecting your best interests as well which may not be the same thing. This is not a failing of your lawyer - when you're a carpenter every ...


12

You can jointly hire a lawyer Yes, they can jointly hire a lawyer, coming at the lawyer essentially as one single entity: a partnership. The lawyer will research both sides of the question, and give the partnership a fair report. The fee you pay may not deliver to one definitive answer, but it'll discuss all the likely angles. However, if one of them ...


11

A Lawyer In A Court Case Needs Court Permission To Withdraw Once a lawyer is representing a client in court, the lawyer can cease to represent the client, either by "withdrawing" or in a "substitution of counsel" (which is far less regulated), but a lawyer can only withdraw and leave the client unrepresented if the lawyer obtains the permission of the court ...


11

I'll answer out of order for a more logical presentation. Why would lawyers "leave the practice altogether", "[b]efore these lawyers lower their prices further they will"? Only about 30% of people earn a four year college degree. A lawyer is a college graduate who had to be in roughly the top 50% of his or her undergraduate class to be admitted to law ...


11

Lawyers have what are functionally continuations of Medieval Guilds(they may be called State Bars, Legal Associations, etc, but that's just window dressing) that set rules(either as legally enforceable "ethics" violations or by successfully lobbying for these to be made into laws) that prevent the dilution of their members' power and collective financial ...


10

Let me turn this around, how would you find a doctor, plumber or hairdresser? There is nothing special about lawyers! Things you should consider when hiring a lawyer are the same as for any other profession or trade: The service you need them to perform Location Value Ability/Expertise References/Referrals As a simple procedure: Define your search. ...


10

Based solely on what you've described, what the lawyer did is inappropriate if, in fact, it occurred without any prior permissions. However, since you are not the actual client, it may be that you lack pertinent info, because this would be exceedingly rare behavior. Lawyers are allowed to make procedural and "expert"/professional decisions about your case ...


10

The law is way more complicated than the layman fully comprehends. You didn't specify which country, but in the U.S. the legal system is full of precedents: previous case decisions from which a lawyer can argue your case or against your case. A non-lawyer will not know all the loopholes that may be important to your case, and they may not understand the ...


9

Lawyers have two primary ethical duties: to the client, and to the legal system. I'm not going to tell you whether your lawyer was right in your case, because I don't know the specifics of your case. However, there are some decisions that are the lawyer's to make, even if the client disagrees. The allocation of responsibility, in most jurisdictions, is ...


9

According to Florida law 454.23: Any person not licensed or otherwise authorized to practice law in this state who practices law in this state or holds himself or herself out to the public as qualified to practice law in this state, or who willfully pretends to be, or willfully takes or uses any name, title, addition, or description implying that he or ...


9

How to resolve a bet on a question of law? should any of them later act in reliance on that answer and end up in a legal trouble, the answerer won't be liable. If said act[ion] in reliance on the answer is about a potential matter to which Bob and Rob would be the parties, Bob or Rob could consider filing suit for declaratory relief. The decision(s) in that ...


9

We are not (generally) required to be represented by lawyers in court. Many people do their own legal work. The requirement to be approved by the bar association is a separate consumer protection law, which is a more general instance of the fact that government reserves the right to limit things done as "commerce" that they do not limit when done as an ...


9

The answer depends on the jurisdiction, the court, and how the public defender system is set up. This answer addresses state court indigent defense at the trial level. In many jurisdictions, state courts are organized by counties. In many of these counties, particularly larger and urban counties, public defenders are a department of county government (like ...


8

The short answer to your question is: yes, but you shouldn't if you can possibly avoid it. You didn't specify which jurisdiction's law you were curious about, so in some jurisdictions (especially civil law jurisdictions, such as continental Europe), the the answer may be different. But under the law as it exists in most U.S. jurisdictions, a natural person ...


8

The UK does have free lawyers for those who cannot afford an attorney. In fact, it is even more liberal than the US, including representation in civil cases for the most part as well (there are a few exceptions, like libel, and from what I've read, even that is changing). Rather than the main source of free representation being called public defenders, ...


8

To add to jimsung's detailed response, some U.S. state ethics panels have issued opinions regarding the usage of the title "doctor." Over the last couple decades, formal positions suggesting that JDs ought not to use the title (including the ABA's own position) have begun to erode as the various states have relaxed the strictures (albeit with cautionary ...


8

The answer isn't really legal (though some jurisdictions regulate the use of such titles through statute), but academic. It depends on specific countries. Italy, for instance, allows all graduates, including undergraduates, to use the title doctor. However, in general the title doctor is reserved for those in medical professions, upon graduation, or holders ...


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