Ethics Opinion 1969-7

October 27, 1969

SUBJECT: PUBLICATION IN SAN DIEGO MAGAZINE

I
QUESTION PRESENTED

May an article be published in a San Diego Magazine which praises a new law firm?

II
SUMMARY

It would be a violation of Rule DR 2-101 of the Code of Professional Responsibility should such an article be published.

III
STATUTES AND CANONS

Paragraph DR 2-101, Publicity in General, from the Code of Professional Responsibility Final Draft states in part:

"(A) A lawyer shall not prepare, cause to be prepared, use, or participate in the use, of any form of public communication that contains professionally self-laudatory statements calculated to attract lay clients; as used herein, 'public communication' includes, but is not limited to, communications by means of television, radio, motion pictures, newspaper, magazine, or book."

IV
ANALYSIS

Even if the article in question is well written and in good taste, such an article would be unprofessional and not in keeping with the canons of ethics concerning advertisements, without specifically pinpointing any particular canon, such an article smacks of flamboyance which is something that an attorney should scrupulously avoid.

It would be a violation of the rule mentioned above and should not, therefore, be printed.

One tiny facet of the problem here, I should point out, is that from the standpoint of an internal problem within the San Diego County Bar Association, there would be, I feel, some resentment for such good publicity to such a new firm.

This opinion is advisory only. It is not binding upon the State Bar, the Board of Governors, its agents or employees.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Publication of the article would also be a violation of Rule 2-101, California Business and Professions Code section 6076, which was derived from A.B.A. Disciplinary Rule 2-101. Please note that as of August 4, 1976, there is still pending before the State Bar a proposed change in the rules regarding advertising.

 

Disclaimer: This opinion was issued by the Legal Ethics Committee of the San Diego County Bar Association. It is advisory only and is not binding upon any member of the SDCBA, any other member of the State Bar of California, the State Bar of California or its Board of Governors, or any persons or tribunals charged with regulatory responsibilities. The SDCBA, its officers, directors, agents, and the Legal Ethics Committee members assume no responsibility or liability in rendering this opinion.