Standing Committee on Unauthorized Practice of Law

Adam David Elfenbein, Chair

The Standing Committee on Unauthorized Practice of Law (Committee) is charged with two duties: 1) it investigates complaints alleging that individuals or business entities are engaged in the unauthorized practice of law; and 2) it issues opinions as to whether specific conduct constitutes the unauthorized practice of law.

This fiscal year, thirty-one (31) new UPL investigations were opened and of these new complaints, fourteen (14) have been closed with one (1) resulting in a signed letter agreement. Of these new complaints, three (3) have been referred to the Office of the Attorney General for civil prosecution or to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and one (1) has been referred to a commonwealth’s attorney for criminal prosecution.

A total of twenty-four (24) investigations were carried over from prior fiscal years. Of these, twenty-four (24) were closed with two (2) resulting in signed letter agreements.  There were three (3) referrals to the Office of the Attorney General.  There were six (6) referrals to a commonwealth attorney for prosecution, and one (1) referral was made to the United States Attorney’s office.

During this year, Assistant Ethics Counsel also reviewed twenty (20) complaints, seventeen (17) of which were determined by counsel, based on the information provided, not to be the unauthorized practice of law in Virginia warranting a formal investigation by the Committee. 

I would like to thank the Committee members, Liaisons and Staff — Guy Cameron Crowgey,  Roger Craig Hurwitz, William J. Viverette, David Brant Neumeyer, Nancy Rodrigues, Elliott P. Park, Susan M. Butler, Levar Stoney, James M. McCauley, Barbara B. Saunders and Kristi R. Hall for their hard work and dedication to the mission of the Committee during the past year.

Updated: Jul 06, 2015