|For immediate release||February 12, 2001|
Law Society suspends B.C. lawyer
VANCOUVER – Pursuant to its statutory duty to govern B.C.'s legal profession in the public interest, the Law Society of B.C. has disciplined the following lawyers (the lawyer's year of call to the B.C. Bar appears in parentheses):
Christopher Roy Penty (1983) of Kelowna was found guilty of professional misconduct for swearing a false affidavit saying a client had instructed him to abandon an appeal when the client had not done so. A hearing panel ordered that Mr. Penty be reprimanded, be suspended from practice for two months commencing June 1, 2001 and that he apologize to his former client and to another lawyer involved in the case.
The Law Society of B.C. was founded in 1869 and is the governing body of the legal profession in B.C. It is an independent organization funded by dues paid by all B.C. lawyers. Under the provisions of the Legal Profession Act, the Law Society is responsible for the licensing, professional conduct and discipline of the more than 10,000 lawyers in B.C.
The Law Society is governed by 31 directors who are known as "Benchers." Twenty-five of the Benchers are elected by lawyers from among the profession. In addition, the provincial government appoints six non-lawyers as Benchers to ensure the public interest is represented in all Law Society decisions. The Law Society's authorized spokespersons are its president, Richard Margetts, Q.C. and its executive director, James G. Matkin.
For more information on the regulation and discipline of lawyers see The Legal Profession Act:
- Section 3: Law Society duty to protect the public.
- Part 4: Discipline
The Legal Profession Act is available on the Law Society of B.C. website here or the B.C. government's website at http://www.qp.gov.bc.ca/statreg.
The Law Society of B.C. makes the following documents available to the media in discipline matters:
- Hearing report
- Penalty report
- Discipline Digest and Discipline Case Digest
Discipline hearings are generally open to the public; please check with the Law Society prior to the hearing if you wish to attend. A list of upcoming hearings is available on the Law Society's website.
Law Society of B.C. media contact:
Brad Daisley, Public Affairs Manager
Office: 604-443-5724 or 1-800-903-5300 toll-free in B.C.