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 Society will investigate and take appropriate action if there is a potential for harm to the public.
From February 22 to June 3, 2011, the Law Society obtained undertakings from nine individuals and businesses not to engage in the practice of law.
The Law Society has obtained court orders prohibiting the following individuals and businesses from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law:
Glenn Robertson and Colette Robertson, both doing business as Pinoy Paralegal, PinoParalegal.com and Divorce Made Easy, of Surrey, British Columbia, provided legal advice and offered to prepare divorce documents and a will for a fee. They have consented to an order not to practise law as defined in section 1 of the Legal Profession Act. They were further permanently prohibited from commencing, prosecuting or defending a proceeding in any court, except as permitted in section 15(1) of the Act.
Anoma Hettige, of New Westminster, British Columbia, provided legal advice and offered to prepare divorce documents and a separation agreement for a fee. She has consented to an order not to practise law as defined in section 1 of the Legal Profession Act.