Presentation on theme: "Pro Hac Vice & the Unauthorized Practice of Law Kevin D. Balkwill, TBA UPL Committee Chair."— Presentation transcript:
Pro Hac Vice & the Unauthorized Practice of Law Kevin D. Balkwill, TBA UPL Committee Chair
A Quick Refresher: Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 19 governs Pro Hac Vice admissions in state court. Qualifications: ● Lawyer not licensed to practice or residing in Tennessee ● Lawyer licensed in good standing in all other jurisdictions ● Lawyer retained by client to appear in Tennessee case
Denial of Application: ● Lawyer’s conduct raises reasonable doubt about his or her compliance with Tennessee’s Rules of Professional Conduct or other rules or law. ● Lawyer has engaged in such frequent appearances as to constitute regular practice in the state.
Revocation: A court may revoke a lawyer’s Pro Hac Vice status upon notice to the lawyer and a finding that the lawyer has ceased to satisfy the requirements of the Rule. Upon revocation, the court shall set forth findings of fact and conclusions of law that constitute grounds for such revocation and forward the information to the Board of Professional Responsibility.
Requirements of Application: ● Lawyer must file a motion in the court or agency he or she seeks to appear ● Lawyer must file a certificate of good standing from jurisdiction where he or she primarily practices ● Lawyer must file a comprehensive affidavit containing a history of licensure, discipline, pro hac vice representation, information re: associate counsel, confirmation of payment of fees to the Board, and knowledge and consent to jurisdiction under the Rules of Tennessee.
Associate Counsel: ● Must sign all pleadings, motions, and other papers filed or served in the proceeding ● Must personally appear for all court or agency proceedings unless excused by the court or agency ● The court or agency may establish conditions relating to the participation of associate counsel in an order granting admission
How the Unauthorized Practice of Law Occurs after Admission: Lawyers are required to pay a registration fee with the Board of Professional Responsibility on a calendar year basis. Once a lawyer has been admitted pro hac vice, the Board has no way of monitoring whether the lawyer is continuing to actively participate in a matter. Many times, pro hac lawyers fail to pay their registration fees for subsequent calendar years, even though they continue to actively participate in a matter.
How the Board is Attempting to Combat the Problem: Beginning in March 2015, pro hac vice lawyers will begin receiving a Tennessee bar card acknowledging their current registration for the calendar year. Lawyers are also requested to state on their renewal registration forms whether or not they are continuing to actively participate as a pro hac vice lawyer in a matter.
How the Courts Can Help Combat the Problem: Caution associate counsel working with pro hac lawyers that they have an obligation to ensure they are complying with the Rules of Professional Conduct and can be held responsible for assisting a lawyer whose registration has expired. Check the Board’s database to determine whether a pro hac lawyer’s registration is current. Ask whether a pro hac lawyer’s registration with the Board is current if they have not previously appeared in your court during a calendar year. Report the misconduct of a pro hac vice lawyer or revocation of such admission to the Board for consideration.