Ethics Counsel on www.OKbar.org

OBA Ethics Counsel

Ethics Opinion No. 120

Adopted September 24, 1936

The Board is in receipt of the following:

"I have in the past carried a card in several law lists. Through carelessness I have neglected to notify them to cease carrying the card, and my name appears in all of the 1936 books and will probably appear in some of the 1937 books, the forms for which are made up in 1936. Kindly advise me what I should do in regard to the matter."

In response:

Assuming that the law lists referred to have not been approved as reputable within the purview of Rule 45 as amended, (effective July 1, 1936), and that they have been published and circulated subsequent to July 1, 1936, it is the duty of the inquirer promptly to bring about the discontinuance of the advertising and solicitation of business so far as possible. See Opinion 62 A.B.A. Committee on Professional Ethics. See also the last paragraph of Rule 45, as amended, which provides that "a member of the bar who * * * permits his name or card to be continued to be published after notice of the publication thereof, in a publication which is not approved as reputable, is guilty of unprofessional conduct."

The publishers who have heretofore carried the name or card of the inquirer without his consent should be notified in positive terms to discontinue the listing of the inquirer in future publications, whether the forms are made up or not.

Should publishers of unapproved lists or directories continue to carry the name or cards of members of the bar of Oklahoma after having been notified to discontinue, or should other publishers of unapproved lists carry the names or cards of members of the bar, the members whose names are carried in those publications should notify the Secretary of the State Bar of the facts.

It is conceivable that those publishers may be enjoined by the State Bar, on the theory that the listing constitutes advertising of those members of the bar and the solicitation of business for them, contrary to law and to the ethics of the profession as declared by the State Bar of Oklahoma.