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II.

The lawyer and the Legal Profession


CANON 9 A LAWYER SHALL NOT DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY
ASSIST IN THE UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW.
Rule 9.01 A lawyer shall not delegate to any unqualified
person the performance of any task which by law may only be
performed by a member of the Bar in good standing.
Rule 9.02 A lawyer shall not divide or stipulate to divide a fee
for legal services with persons not licensed to practice law,
except:
a. Where there is a pre-existing agreement with a partner or
associate that, upon the latters death, money shall be
paid over a reasonable period of time to his estate or to
persons specified in the agreement; or
b. Where a lawyer undertakes to complete unfinished legal
business of a deceased lawyer; or
c. Where a lawyer or law firm includes non-lawyer
employees in a retirement plan, even if the plan is based in
whole or in part, on a profitable sharing agreement.






DONNA MARIE S. AGUIRRE vs. EDWIN L. RANA
FACTS:
Respondent is a successful bar passer in the 2000 bar examinations. He was able to take his oath
but not sign his name in the role of attorneys unless he is cleared for the complaint filed against him.
Petitioner filed for a petition for Denial of Admission to the Bar, on the grounds of the unauthorized
practice of law, grave misconduct, violation of the law and grave misrepresentation. Petitioner aver that,
prior to taking his oath, Respondent appeared as counsel to an election candidate before the Municipal
Board of Election Canvassers (MBEC) of Masbate, where he filed a pleading and represented himself as
counsel for and in behalf of Vice Mayoralty candidate, George Bunan he then signed the pleading as
counsel for George Bunan. And since mayoralty Bunan did not seek respondents services, he may
have filed the said pleading as a ploy to prevent the proclamation of the winning vice mayoralty. The
plaintiff also alleges that respondent is a municipal government employee and is not allowed by law to
act as counsel for any client in any court or administrative body. In his defense, respondent claims that
Bunan indeed sought for his specific assistance, but he did not sign the pleadings as a lawyer. He only
provided specific assistance and advice, not as a lawyer but as a person who knows the law. He also
state that he filed for resignation, as secretary of the Sangguniang Bayan of Mandaon, Masbate prior to
the elections. Respondent maintain that the administrative case filed against him is motivated mainly by
political vendetta since the petitioner is the daughter of the losing candidate for mayor.

ISSUE:
WON Respondent is fit, and may sign his name in the role of attorneys, for the admission to the
bar.

HELD:
Respondent did actively participated in the proceedings and signed as counsel for the candidate.
This was the finding of the Office of the Bar Confidant, who was tasked to investigate the minutes of the
MBEC. The court held that respondent did engage in unauthorized practice of law. The right to practice
law is not a right but a privilege extended to those morally upright and with proper knowledge and skills.
It involves strict regulation, one of which is on the moral character of its members. Passing the bar is not
the only qualification to become an attorney-at-law. Respondent should know that there are two
requisites still to be performed after passing the bar, before becoming a lawyer and those are, taking
the lawyers oath and signing his name in the roll of attorneys. The court finds respondent not morally fit
to be admitted in the bar, notwithstanding the fact that he already took his oath; he was denied
admission to the bar.

ALAWI VS. ALAUYA
FACTS:
A contract was executed through Petitioners agency, E.B. VILLAROSE, for the purchase on
instalments by respondents of a housing unit. A housing loan was also granted by the National Home
Mortgage Finance Corporation (NHMFC). Respondent wrote a letter to the president of the agency
advising to terminate his contract on the ground that his consent was vitiated by gross
misrepresentation, deceit, fraud, dishonesty and abuse of confidence by Petitioner and proceeded to
expound using acerbic language. Respondent also wrote a letter to NHMFC repudiating as void his
contract with Villarosas agency and asking for the cancellation of his loan. Respondent then wrote three
letters to the Supreme Court to stop deductions from his salary regarding the said loan. Petitioner then
filed a complaint against respondent for the commission of libellous and malicious charges and the
usurp title of attorney that he uses among his letters.

ISSUE:
WON Respondent violated the rule of conduct and ethical standards of public officials and
employees.
WON respondent has the privilege to use the title attorney.

HELD:
YES. Respondent being a member of the Sharia Bar and an officer of the court should not use
languages which are abusive, offensive, scandalous, menacing or otherwise improper. As a public official
and employee, he must at all times respect the right of others and refrain from doing acts contrary to
morals, law, public order and public safety and or interest.
NO. Respondent is member of the Sharia Bar which is not a full-pledged members of the
Philippine Bar. Respondent may only practice law only before a sharia court and may only use the title
of counsellor.





ULEP VS. THE LEGAL CLINIC
FACTS:
This is a petition for the Supreme Court to order the Legal Clinic to cease and desist issuing
advertisement similar to or of the same tenor as that of a Law Office. The respondent admits the facts of
publication of said advertisements. They however claims that they are not engage in the practice of law
but in the rendering of legal support services through paralegals with the use of modern electronic
machineries.

ISSUE:
WON the services offered by the Legal Clinic, constitute a practice of law.

HELD:
According to the IBP, legal support services and legal services is without substantial distinction.
The use of the name the LEGAL CLINIC gives the impression that the respondent corporation is being
managed by lawyers and that is renders legal services. The advertisements induce the performance
contrary to law, morals, public order and public policy. Any activity, in or out of the coury which requires
the application of law, legal procedures, knowledge, training and experience; and it is not limited to only
to the appearance made in court. Indeed the Legal Clinic constitutes the practice of law which is
unauthorized and illegal. CANON 9 A LAWYER SHALL NOT DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY ASSIST IN THE
UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW.










OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR (OCA) VS. ATTY MISAEL LADAGA
FACTS:
Respondent is a branch clerk of court of RTC Makati. He requested the court administrator that
he will represent himself in a criminal proceeding as a pro bono counsel before the MTC of Quezon City,
for and in behalf of his cousin who was accused for falsification of Public Documents. This administrative
case was filed against respondent for his failure to comply with the Administrative Code. It is alleged
that respondent appeared as counsel without the permission of the Court. Respondent aver that
extending his hand for his relative is for a humanitarian purpose. Every time he appears as counsel, he is
on an approved leave of absence and that he did not receive a single centavo from his client. Moreover,
the presiding judge of the criminal case was aware of his appearance as counsel for his cousin.

ISSUE:
WON respondents appearance as a pro bono counsel constitutes the practice of law as
prohibited by the Administrative Code.

HELD:
NO. The court ruled that respondents actions and representation as a pro bono counsel does
not constitute the practice of law. The Practice of law of should amount to customarily or habitually
holding ones self to the public as a lawyer. One must have presented himself to be in an active and
continued practice of the legal profession and demanding payment or compensation for such services.
Respondent was reprimanded due to his failure in obtaining permission prior to his representation as
counsel, from the head of the Department which is the Court as required by law.







FELIPE ECO VS JUAN DE G. RODRIGUEZ

FACTS:

Petitioner was granted a private woodland registration certification by the Bureau of Forestry
but the same was later cancelled by the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources due to
numerous oppositions and also by reason of petitioners refusal to submit to a formal investigation.
Petitioner questioned the decision before the court but the trial court affirmed the Secretarys decision.
Petitioner then filed a notice of appeal and also posted the required appeal bond. This was opposed
because he filed it out of time; he then argued that the delay is due to excusable negligence. The alleged
negligence consisted of the erroneous computation by Petitioners counsels clerk of the period within
which an appeal may be made, said clerk being of the impression that the prescriptive period to appeal
in certiorari cases is also 30 days like in ordinary civil actions instead of 15 days.

ISSUE:

WON the delay is excusable.

HELD:

No. What was delegated by petitioners counsel to his clerk was the computation itself of the
period within which the appropriate pleading may be filed. This act is hardly prudent or wise. The duty
to compute the period to appeal is a duty that devolves upon the attorney which he cannot and should
not delegate unto an employee because it concerns a question of study of the law and its application,
and the Supreme Court considers this to be a delicate matter that should not be delegated. The
negligence here cannot, therefore, be considered excusable.









TAN TEK BENG VS. ATTY. TIMOTEO DAVID

FACTS:
Petitioner, a non-lawyer and Respondent, a lawyer entered into an agreement whereby
Petitioner will supply clients for respondent in exchange thereof, petitioner will receive 50% of the
attorneys fees collected. Respondent also agreed not to deal directly with clients supplied by petitioner
directly without the latters consent. The agreement did not last due to mutual accusations of double-
cross. Petitioner denounced respondent and the court referred the case to the Solicitor general for
investigation, report and recommendation. Scheduled hearings and stipulation of facts did not
materialize due to Petitioners demised.
ISSUE:

WON Respondent and petitioners agreement is invalid.
WON Respondent is guilty for malpractice.

HELD:

Yes. Respondent is reprimanded for being guilty of malpractice. CANON 9 A LAWYER SHALL
NOT DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY ASSIST IN THE UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW. Rule 9.02 A lawyer
shall not divide or stipulate to divide a fee for legal services with persons not licensed to practice law.
Practice of law is a profession, not a business. The agreement between Respondent and Petitioner is
void because it is tantamount to malpractice which is the practice of soliciting cases at law for the
purpose of gain, either personally or through paid agents or brokers. Malpractice ordinarily refers to
any malfeasance or dereliction of duty committed by a lawyer. The lawyer may not seek or obtain
employment by himself or through others for to do so would be unprofessional.








FIVE J TAXI VS. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION (NLRC)
FACTS:
This is a special civil action for certiorari to annul the decision of respondent ordering petitioners
to pay private respondents, who worked for petitioners as taxi drivers, their accumulated deposits and
car wash payments, plus interest at the legal rate from the date of promulgation of judgement to the
date of actual payment, and 10% of the total amount as and for attorneys fees for the representative of
private respondents.
ISSUE:
WON respondents authorized representative is eligible for attorneys or services fees.
HELD:
NO. Non-lawyers may appear in any labor arbiter only if they represent themselves and if they
represent their organization or the members thereof. The authorized representative of the respondent
is a non-lawyer who did not fall in any categories. It is a statutory rule in the existence of attorney-client
relationship that an attorney shall be entitled to have and recover from his client reasonable
compensation for his services. Such relationship cannot exist unless the clients representative is a
lawyer. By clear mandate of the law, respondents representative is not a lawyer and therefore not
entitled to attorneys fees.