|For immediate release||March 4, 2015|
Law Society takes action against individuals, business for unauthorized practice of law
Vancouver – Under the Legal Profession Act, the Law Society is responsible for licensing lawyers and regulating the legal profession. The Law Society also takes action against those who put the public at risk by illegally offering legal services or misrepresenting themselves as lawyers.
From November 25, 2014 to February 18, 2015, the Law Society obtained undertakings from seven individuals not to engage in the practice of law.
During that time period, the Law Society also obtained orders prohibiting the following individuals and business from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law:
On February 18, 2015 Robert G.D. Gallard and Gallard’s Collection Service Ltd., of Victoria was found in contempt of an order issued in 2007 that prohibited them from engaging in the practice of law. Gallard, his company and employees had performed various legal services for clients in small claims court in the expectation of a fee, contrary to the court order. The court fined Gallard and his company $7,500 and awarded the Law Society its special costs. The court also expanded the previous injunction to prohibit Gallard and his company from commencing, prosecuting or defending a proceeding on behalf of others regardless of whether a fee is charged.
On February 13, 2015 Kevin James Anderson, of Kelowna, consented to an injunction prohibiting him from representing himself as a lawyer, counsel or in any other manner that represents he is qualified or entitled to engage in the practice of law in BC. Anderson is also prohibited from engaging in the practice of law, including the drawing, settling or revising of corporate documents and giving legal advice for or in the expectation of a fee, gain or reward. The injunction will remain in force unless and until the Law Society permits him to practise law in BC.
On January 23, 2015 Boguslaw Bejm, of Coquitlam, consented to an injunction prohibiting him from engaging in the practice of law for or in the expectation of a fee. In 2013 and 2014, Bejm had offered legal services on the Craigslist website, including advice on family law and litigation matters, for or in the expectation of a fee.
To read the consent orders, see the Law Society’s database of unauthorized practitioners.
Under the Legal Profession Act, only trained, qualified lawyers (or articled students or paralegals under a lawyer’s supervision) may provide legal services and advice to the public, as others are not regulated, nor insured.
When the Law Society receives complaints about an unqualified or untrained person purporting to provide legal services, the Society will investigate and take appropriate action if there is a potential for harm to the public.
The Law Society of British Columbia regulates the more than 11,000 practising lawyers in the province, setting and enforcing standards of professional conduct that ensure the public is well-served by a competent, honourable legal profession.
For further information or to arrange an interview contact: