Unauthorized practice of law
Under the Legal Profession Act, only trained, qualified lawyers may provide legal services and advice to the public. Further, non-lawyers are not regulated, nor are they required to carry insurance to compensate clients for errors and omission in the legal work or claims of theft by unscrupulous individuals marketing legal services. When the Law Society receives complaints about an unqualified or untrained person providing legal assistance, the Law Society will investigate and take appropriate action if there is a potential for harm to the public.
From September 1 to December 2, 2010, the Law Society obtained undertakings from 18 individuals and businesses not to engage in the practice of law
The Law Society has obtained a court order prohibiting the following individual and business from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law:
Auguste Christiane Frederich von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg (AKA Christiane von Pfahlenburg, AKA Walther Kay Diener, and his company Argento Metals Compagnie Ltd., AKA A.M. CIE. Ltd.) was found in contempt of a contempt order.
In 2006, the Law Society obtained an injunction against von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg, restraining him from engaging in the practice of law. The Law Society learned von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg continued to engage in the practice of law and brought contempt proceedings against him. In 2008, the Court found von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg in contempt of a court order and ordered him to serve 100 hours of community service and to pay the society’s costs. Von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg did not complete any community service and has not paid the Law Society’s costs.
The Law Society obtained information that von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg continued to provide legal advice and legal services for a fee, and appeared to be soliciting business from vulnerable members of the public. The Law Society brought an application against von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg for breaching the 2008 contempt order. In November 2010, the Court found von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg in contempt of the contempt order. Von Pfahlenburg-Marienburg was sentenced to 30 days incarceration and ordered to pay special costs to the Law Society.