11 Docket Call 1 (1976)

handle is hein.journals/dcktcll11 and id is 1 raw text is: chairman's
James J. Bierbower

Some of the dust has settled, but the question of all-out
advertising by lawyers remains the most significant issue
facing the bar.
The midyear meeting of the House of Delegates in
Philadelphia produced a healthy debate on this issue. Al-
though some limited changes were made in the Code of
Professional Responsibility, it was and is clear that the
majority of the House was not panicked by the litiga-
tion filed by consumer groups, the recommendation of
the ABA Committee on Ethics and Professional Respon-
sibility, and the noises emanating from Washington.
After the votes were counted, there were immediate
continued on page 16

aba takes
limited action
on advertising
The ABA's House of Delegates has taken limited
action to permit more information on attorney fees and
services, but in so doing it rejected an ABA committee
proposal for drastic changes in the traditional restrictions
against advertising by lawyers.
Climaxing almost three hours of debate on February
17, 1976, the delegates amended the Code of Profes-
sional Responsibility to allow lawyers to list additional
details on their practices and some information on fees
in legal directories and the Yellow Pages. The House de-
bated the issue during its Philadelphia midyear meeting.
The ABA's Standing Committee on Ethics and Pro-
fessional Responsibility, chaired by Lewis H. Van Dusen,
Jr., of Philadelphia, had proposed sweeping changes
prior to the Philadelphia meeting. The committee
retreated somewhat but still its proposals were rejected.
At the end of the session, the House cast its weight
behind an amended proposal from the Standing Commit-
con tinued on page 2

1976 American Bar Association

IN THE SECTION ........10

virginia stands pat
Virginia has rejected any change whatsoever in
the anti-advertising rules in the Code of Profession-
al Responsibility.
In an unsigned order on April 22, 1976, the
Virginia State Supreme Court said only that ad-
vertising would not serve the best interests of the
public or the legal profession, and rejected any
The Virginia State Bar had petitioned the Court
to adopt substantially the limited changes adopted
by the ABA House of Delegates in February of
this year.
Under the proposal offered by the governing
council of the Virginia State Bar, lawyers would
have been permitted to list their fees for initial
consultation in telephone and legal directories,
whether they would accept credit terms, their
legal specialties, and membership in legal or-
gan izations.
The ABA standards are not binding on state or
local bar groups. In Virginia, as in most states, for-
mal adoption of such changes in the code is
determined by the State Supreme Court.


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