The Legal Profession Act – Part 3 – Authority To Practise Law
Authority to practise law
20(1) Subject to any restrictions imposed by or under this Act, a practising lawyer may practise law in Manitoba.
Unauthorized practice of law
20(2) Except as permitted by or under this Act or another Act, no person shall
(a) carry on the practice of law;
(b) appear as a lawyer before any court or before a justice of the peace;
(c) sue out any writ or process or solicit, commence, carry on or defend any action or proceeding before a court; or
(d) attempt to do any of the things mentioned in clauses (a) to (c).
Activities deemed to be carrying on the practice of law
20(3) A person who does any of the following, directly or indirectly, for or in the expectation of a fee or reward is deemed to be carrying on the practice of law:
(a) draws, revises or settles any of the following documents:
(i) a document relating to real or personal property,
(ii) a document for use in a proceeding, whether judicial or extra-judicial,
(iii) a document relating to the incorporation, administration, organization, reorganization, dissolution or winding-up of a corporation,
(iv) a will, deed, settlement, trust deed or power of attorney, or any document relating to the guardianship or estate of a person,
(v) a document relating to proceedings under any statute of Canada or of Manitoba;
(b) negotiates or solicits the right to negotiate for the settlement of, or settles, a claim for loss or damage founded in tort;
(c) agrees to provide the services of a practising lawyer to any person, unless the agreement is part of, or is made under
(i) a prepaid legal services plan,
(ii) a liability insurance policy, or
(iii) a collective agreement or collective bargaining relationship;
(d) gives legal advice.
20(4) Subsection (2) does not apply to the following:
(a) a public officer acting within the scope of his or her authority as a public officer;
(b) a notary public exercising his or her powers as a notary public;
(b.1) a district registrar or deputy district registrar under The Real Property Act acting within the scope of the duties of a district registrar;
(c) a person preparing a document for his or her own use or to which he or she is a party;
(d) a person acting on his or her own behalf in an action or a proceeding;
(e) an officer or employee of an incorporated or unincorporated organization preparing a document for the use of the organization or to which it is a party.
(f) a person or a member of a class of persons set out in rules made under section 20.1 who is providing the legal services specified in those rules in accordance with any conditions or restrictions in those rules.
Rules re permitted legal service providers 20.1 The benchers may make rules permitting a person or a member of a class of persons set out in the rules to provide specified legal services, subject to any conditions or restrictions set out in the rules.
24 A member who practises law in a foreign jurisdiction must
(a) comply with the legislation, regulations, rules and code of professional conduct that apply to members of the legal profession of that jurisdiction; and
(b) on request by the authority that governs the legal profession in that jurisdiction, provide the authority with the names of all jurisdictions in which he or she is a member of the legal profession.
Rules re law firms
24.1 The benchers may make rules respecting law firms that
(a) permit and regulate different types of arrangements to provide legal services, including arrangements between lawyers and between lawyers and non-lawyers, and that establish conditions and requirements for the arrangements;
(b) require law firms to register with the society;
(c) require law firms to designate a practising lawyer of the firm who is to receive official communication from the society;
(d) specify what information the law firms must provide and keep current with the society;
24.2(1) This Act and the rules apply to members despite any relationship they may have with a law firm.
Obligations to clients not diminished
24.2(2) The fiduciary and ethical obligations of members, and their obligations respecting confidentiality and solicitor-client privilege, to persons receiving legal services are not diminished by the fact that the services are provided by a member through a law firm.
Authority to practise in limited liability partnership
25(1) A person who is authorized by this Part or Part 4 (law corporations) to practise law in Manitoba may carry on the practice as a partner of a limited liability partnership to which Part III of The Partnership Act applies.
Rules re limited liability partnerships
25(2) The benchers may make rules that are not contrary to The Partnership Act respecting limited liability partnerships.
Limited practitioners 25.1(1) The society may issue a limited practice certificate that authorizes the holder to carry on the limited practice of law as specified in the certificate, subject to the rules and regulations.
Eligibility 25.1(2) A limited practice certificate may be issued to a person who
(a) does not meet the requirements to become a member as a lawyer or student;
(b) has complied with the rules respecting applications for limited practice certificates;
(c) has satisfied all education and training requirements set out in the rules and regulations;
(d) agrees to practise law in accordance with the conditions and restrictions that apply to limited practitioners; and
(e) pays the fees specified in the rules.
Rules re limited practitioners 25.1(3) The benchers may make rules respecting the issuance of limited practice certificates and the regulation of limited practitioners, including rules respecting
(a) eligibility requirements to become a limited practitioner;
(b) applications for a limited practice certificate, including the application fee;
(c) criteria to be considered on an application for a limited practice certificate;
(d) education and training of limited practitioners;
(e) annual fees to be paid by limited practitioners;
(f) any insurance to be maintained by limited practitioners;
(g) conditions and restrictions on the practice of law by limited practitioners;
(h) measures to ensure the competence of limited practitioners;
(i) discipline of limited practitioners.
Code of conduct 25.1(4) The benchers may establish or adopt a code of conduct for limited practitioners.
Register 25.4(1) The chief executive officer must maintain a register of limited practitioners.
Additional information 25.4(2) The chief executive officer must record any change to the status of a limited practitioner and any conditions or restrictions imposed on a limited practitioner that do not apply to all limited practitioners.
Reference in other Acts and regulations 25.5 Unless expressly provided otherwise, a reference in any other Act or in any regulation, rule, by-law or order made under any other Act to a lawyer, barrister, solicitor or other person entitled to carry on the practice of law is deemed to include a reference to a limited practitioner, if the practitioner is authorized to provide the legal services referred to in that provision.
Employment or engagement of former or suspended member
26 No person shall employ or engage a former member or a member who is suspended from practice to perform, in any capacity whatsoever, services that constitute the practice of law, unless the employment or engagement is approved by the benchers.
27 No person shall falsely represent himself or herself, or another person, as being
(a) ) a lawyer, student or limited practitioner; or
(b) authorized to practise law in Manitoba.
28(1) A person who contravenes any of the following provisions is guilty of an offence:
(a) subsection 20(2) (unauthorized practice);
(b) section 26 (employment or engagement of former or suspended member);
(c) section 27 (false representation).
Offence by corporation
28(2) If a corporation commits an offence under this section, a director, officer or employee of the corporation who authorized, permitted or acquiesced in the commission of the offence is also guilty of an offence, whether or not the corporation has been prosecuted or convicted.
28(3) A person who is guilty of an offence under this section is liable, on summary conviction,
(a) for a first offence, to a fine of not more than $6,000.; and
(b) for a second or subsequent offence, to a fine of not more than $30,000.
Fine payable to minister
28(4) Every fine imposed under this section is payable to the Minister of Finance.
Prosecution by society or others
28(5) Anyone may prosecute an offence under this section, and the government may pay to the prosecutor, out of any fine recovered, an amount that the government considers an appropriate contribution toward the prosecution costs.
28(6) [Repealed] S.M. 2013, c. 47, Sch. A, s. 129.