Should non-lawyers be allowed to own stakes in law firms? A resounding “no” is the opinion of many state bar association leaders.
An American Bar Association commission is once again studying the issue and sought input from the wider legal world. Those who favor lifting the restriction say the changewould expand consumers’ access to legal services, spur innovation and reduce the cost of legal help.
But resistance to the idea remains fierce among many state bar groups, judging by comment letters they submitted in response. “There can be no doubt that the public interest and integrity of the profession is best served when lawyers are owners of law firms,” wrote the New Jersey State Bar Association’s president, Miles S. Winder.
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