LEO: Advertising and Solicitation  LE Op. 1242


Advertising and Solicitation - Letterhead: Name of Professional

Corporation not Indicating it is Engaged in the Practice of Law.


June 14, 1989


You have asked the Committee to consider whether a letterhead is

misleading where the firm name consists of several names of the partners

of the firm and a notation that the partnership is by and between

professional corporations, but does not include a specific indication that

the entity is a law firm. The appropriate and controlling disciplinary

rule relative to your inquiry is DR:2-102(A), which provides that a

lawyer or law firm may use or participate in the use of a professional

card, announcement card, office sign, letterheads, telephone and directory

listing, law list, legal directory listing, or similar professional notice

or device unless it includes a statement or claim that it is false,

fraudulent, misleading, or deceptive. The Committee is concerned that the

language "a partnership of professional corporation" does not clearly

identify the types of corporations comprising the partnership. Therefore,

the reader may be misled if, in fact, certain of the corporation are

organized for purposes other than the practice of law. Disciplinary Rule 3-

103 [ DR:3-103] provides that a lawyer shall not form a partnership with

a nonlawyer or lay corporation if any of the activities of the partnership

consist of the practice of law.


The Committee is of the view that if, in fact, the partnership consists

of separate legal corporations in business for the practice of law, any

communication to the public, including letterhead, professional cards,

announcement cards, office signs, telephone directories, and law lists,

should state that the partnership is so engaged. The Committee believes a

more appropriate disclaimer after the entity would be "a partnership of

professional legal corporations" which unequivocally identifies the



Committee Opinion June 14, 1989




See also LE Op. 1369.