Ethics Counsel on www.OKbar.org

OBA Ethics Counsel

Ethics Opinion No. 98

Adopted December 26, 1935

Query:

"A member of the State Bar pays for the privilege of placing his card in a weekly insurance magazine circulating primarily among insurance salesmen and claim men. The card states that the member specializes in handling insurance litigation. The magazine is published each week under the statement that it endorses and recommends the member.

Query:

Is the member of the bar guilty of unethical practice?"

In response:

The question must be answered in the affirmative. Rule 45 of the Rules of Professional Conduct permits the insertion of his professional card in a reputable law list. The magazine described is not a reputable law list for two reasons: (1) It is not a publication for the prime purpose of which is the listing of attorneys. (2) By circulating among prospective clients the names of its lawyer subscribers, it is engaged in the solicitation of business by advertisement for the lawyer subscriber in violation of Rule 29 of the Rules of Professional Conduct of the State Bar of Oklahoma. By that rule the lawyer is prohibited from the "solicitation of business by ... advertisements."