Unauthorized practice of law

Under the Legal Profession Act, only trained, qualified lawyers (or articled students under a lawyer’s supervision) 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 June 4 to August 9, 2011, the Law Society obtained undertakings from 12 individuals and businesses not to engage in the practice of law.

The Law Society has obtained court orders prohibiting the following individual and business from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law:

Advance Recovery Systems Ltd. and Peter Sandher, both of Vancouver, BC, provided legal advice and offered to draft court documents for a fee. The Law Society obtained an order permanently prohibiting both from engaging in the practice of law as defined in section 1 of the Legal Profession Act. The Law Society was awarded its costs.

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