Tuesday, June 10, 2014

VIRTUAL LAW OFFICE IN NEW YORK

According to a recent opinion from the New York City Bar Association:

"A New York lawyer may use the street address of a virtual law office ("VLO") located in New York state as the "principal law office address" for the purposes of Rule 7.1(h) of the New York Rules of Professional Conduct (the "New York Rules" or the "Rules"), even if most of the lawyer's work is done at another location. In addition, a New York lawyer may use the address of a VLO as the office address on business cards, letterhead and law firm website. Given the lower overhead, improved encryption systems, expansion of mobile communication options, availability of electronic research, and the ease of storing and transmitting digital documents and information, VLOs are becoming an increasingly attractive option for attorneys throughout the country. A New York lawyer who uses a VLO must also comply with other New York Rules, including Rules 1.4, 1.6, 5.1, 5.3, 8.4(a) and 8.4(c).

A New York lawyer may need to consider additional issues, such as whether the contemplated arrangement complies with relevant substantive laws and court rules, and the professional conduct rules of other jurisdictions. These additional issues fall outside the jurisdiction of the Committee on Professional Ethics (the "Committee"), which is limited to interpreting the New York Rules.[1]"

The full opinion can be found at the following link:

http://www.nycbar.org/ethics/ethics-opinions-local/2014opinions/2023-formal-opinion-2014-02

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