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is it considered legal advice to help?

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gingerbread

Junior Member
What is the name of your state?What is the name of your state? WE ARE IN NC..
my friends Son wants to file pro se' he is single , has no property.little income, little expenses, he wants to file ch 7 on 8K.....does he have to mention if I help him with the forms, and if he does put my name down, can I get in trouble for practicing law without a license? I just want to help a friend.
 


Ladynred

Senior Member
does he have to mention if I help him with the forms, and if he does put my name down, can I get in trouble for practicing law without a license?
Let HIM prepare the forms. If the Trustee asks if he had any help, he can just say a friend helped him. I don't where they draw the line for the 'illegal practice of law', but just helping someone understand how to fill out forms isn't practicing law - you're not giving him legal adivce.
 

JETX

Senior Member
gingerbread said:
What is the name of your state?What is the name of your state? WE ARE IN NC..
my friends Son wants to file pro se' he is single , has no property.little income, little expenses, he wants to file ch 7 on 8K.....does he have to mention if I help him with the forms, and if he does put my name down, can I get in trouble for practicing law without a license? I just want to help a friend.
Though VERY unlikely to become a problem... What you describe DOES meet your state statutes on 'unauthorized practice of law' (UPL).

The following is from the NC State Bar site:
North Carolina statutes limit the practice of law to active members of The North Carolina State Bar and to professional corporations properly registered and qualified as law firms. N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 84-4 and 84-5. The Authorized Practice Committee is a standing committee of the State Bar charged with investigating and acting upon allegations of unauthorized practice of law. The Rules of The North Carolina State Bar state, “[t]he purpose of the committee on the authorized practice of law is to protect the public from being unlawfully advised and represented in legal matters by unqualified persons.” 27 N.C. Admin. Code 1D § .0201.

Assistance with the preparation of legal documents is an area in which this victimization commonly occurs. Bankruptcy debtors receive bad advice from non-attorneys helping them fill out bankruptcy forms. Couples seeking to obtain a simple divorce are misled by internet document preparation services about the legal grounds and requirements for divorce. Members of the growing Hispanic population are led astray by non-attorneys who claim they can help Hispanic individuals become American citizens.

http://www.ncbar.com/home/upl.asp
 

Ladynred

Senior Member
Interesting, I wondered where they draw the line. There would be an awful lot of people who fall into that category by helping friends and relatives fill out forms.

That's why I tell people who insist on doing a BK themselves to READ and learn what the process is. Some people are ill-prepared to handle the legalese and the papers and legal procedures that must be followed. I always recommend the Nolo book, if you have at least a high school education, you should be able to understand that book.
 

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