Hello everyone and welcome to this Ethics Alert which will discuss a New Jersey lawyer’s request for formal advisory opinion regarding remote practice related to non-Florida matters from his Florida home. The lawyer’s request for the formal UPL opinion is here: https://www-media.floridabar.org/uploads/2019/12/Restaino_Request.pdf
The Florida Bar has provided notice that the Bar’s UPL Standing Committee will consider a New Jersey lawyer’s request for a formal advisory opinion on whether it constitutes the unlicensed practice of law for the lawyer, who is a Florida resident employed by a New Jersey law firm which has no place of business or office in Florida, to work remotely from his Florida home only on matters that concern federal intellectual property rights not Florida law) and without any public presence or profile in Florida as an attorney.
The Bar’s UPL Committee will hold a public hearing on February 7, 2020, at the Hyatt Regency Orlando Hotel, 9801 International Drive, Orlando, FL 32819 beginning at 9:00 a.m., to receive input on the question and testimony from interested individuals. Written testimony can also be sent to The Florida Bar, UPL Dept., 651 E. Jefferson St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-2300, or by e-mail before the hearing.
The February 7 hearing is the first step in the UPL formal advisory opinion process and, after the hearing, the committee will decide whether to issue a proposed opinion. The committee has not previously considered the question and is not required to issue an opinion after the hearing.
Bottom line: If the Florida Bar’s UPL Committee renders a formal opinion, it should provide guidance on the issue and any proposed opinion by the committee will be advisory only.
I will follow the issue and keep you advised…and be careful out there.
Disclaimer: this e-mail is not an advertisement, does not contain any legal advice, and does not create an attorney/client relationship and the comments herein should not be relied upon by anyone who reads it.
Joseph A. Corsmeier, Esquire
Law Office of Joseph A. Corsmeier, P.A.
2999 Alt. 19, Suite A
Palm Harbor, Florida 34683
Office (727) 799-1688
Fax (727) 799-1670