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Industry Policy | National Lawyers Association Issues Statement: Lawyers Are Not Allowed to Provide Legal Services Free of Charge


As is well known, there is no free lunch in the world, but in reality, more people flock to free lawyer services.

Why do we come here? Some people have a mentality of wanting to make small gains, some believe that lawyers are just using their mouths and hands, and more importantly, I think it is people's unwillingness to measure the value of legal services with money.

The National Bar Association explicitly stipulates that lawyers are not allowed to receive free or reduced fees during their practice. Perhaps it is the huge impact of Internet legal services on the lawyer industry in recent years, which not only failed to improve the service level of lawyers, but also destroyed the entire fee system of the lawyer industry. After 10 years of inflation, the property market rose sharply, but the lawyer fees did not rise but fell.

From the legal services and fund business of quasi listed companies to traffic accident litigation, marriage and family litigation, it permeates all aspects of legal services. The National Association of Lawyers, as the regulatory agency for law firms and lawyers across the country, introduced this rule at this time, which is a major measure to promote chaos on the Internet.

Let's take a look together at how it is regulated.

Rules for the Promotion of Lawyer Business by the All China Lawyers Association (Trial)

(Approved by the 12th Executive Council of the 9th National Lawyers Association on January 6, 2018)

Lvfatong [2018] No. 5

Keywords: Prohibition of free or reduced fees, prohibition of promising case results

Article 10: Lawyers and law firms shall not engage in the following behaviors when promoting their business:

(1) False, misleading, or exaggerated advertising;

(2) Inconsistent with registration information;

(3) Explicitly or implicitly having special relationships with judicial organs, government agencies, social organizations, intermediary agencies, and their staff;

(4) Belittling other law firms or lawyers; Or compare and promote with other law firms and lawyers; (5) Promise to handle the case results;

(6) Declaring the winning rate, compensation amount, and subject matter amount may create unreasonable expectations among the public towards lawyers and law firms;

(7) Explicitly or implicitly providing kickbacks or other benefits;

(8) No charges or reduced charges (excluding legal aid cases);

(9) Customer information released without customer permission;

(10) Words, patterns, images, and audio-visual materials that are not commensurate with the profession of a lawyer;

(11) Using the position held by the Bar Association in activities that do not fulfill the duties of the Bar Association;

(12) Using the names of China, China, the whole country, or foreign countries, or using the names of international organizations, state organs, government organizations, or industry associations without consent;

(13) Other prohibited content stipulated by laws, regulations, rules, and industry norms.

Keywords: restrictions on advertising placement areas, restrictions on diversified promotion methods

Article 11: It is prohibited to publish business promotion information in the following ways:

(1) Using artistic exaggeration to create and publish business promotion information;

(2) Pasting and distributing business promotion information in public places;

(3) Promote business to unspecified entities through phone calls, letters, text messages, emails, and other means;

(4) Publish business promotion information in the vicinity of courts, procuratorates, detention centers, public security organs, prisons, arbitration committees, etc. in the form of billboards, mobile advertisements, electronic information display boards, etc;

(5) Other business promotion methods that harm the professional image of lawyers and the overall interests of the legal industry.

Keywords: This rule is binding on search engines such as "Baidu"

Article 13 Lawyers, law firms, internet platforms, mass media and other third-party media that cooperate in business promotion shall comply with these Rules regardless of whether the third party collects fees from lawyers and law firms.

Lawyers and law firms shall require third-party media to disclose the information specified in Article 6 and Article 7 of these rules to the audience.

Lawyers and law firms are not allowed to cooperate with third parties for business promotion by paying case introduction fees, sharing lawyer's fee income, or other means.

Keywords: Violation penalties

Article 17: For acts that violate these rules, the Bar Association shall order lawyers and law firms to make corrections within a specified period of time, and may investigate and punish them in accordance with the Rules for Disciplinary Actions against Members of the All China Bar Association.

Legal services are a job for lawyers, as one lawyer can handle the legal affairs of multiple clients simultaneously.

But things or disputes that happen to you may only last for a lifetime. If you can handle them yourself and mediate them, you won't have to look for a lawyer.

This means that your matter has reached a point where you have to find a lawyer, which is also a very tricky matter.

Since it is a problem that is difficult for oneself to solve, professionals who help you solve problems should receive the appropriate compensation.

If you need the help of a lawyer on one hand, who can help you solve your own problems, and on the other hand, you do not recognize the work of a lawyer and are unwilling to pay the price for the contributions of others, then I can only say that "there has never been a free lunch", and you will eventually pay the price for your "selfishness" in another form.

Source: First French Commerce