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Amendment to Ruling 7.03 of the Rules and Rulings of the Bar Council (Circular No 172/2018)

Circular No 172/2018 
Dated 13 July 2018 

To Members of the Malaysian Bar
 

Amendment to Ruling 7.03 of the Rules and Rulings of the Bar Council

Pursuant to section 57(a) of the Legal Profession Act 1976, the Bar Council has amended Ruling 7.03, as proposed by the Bar Council Small Firm Practice Committee.

The amendments to Ruling 7.03 are as marked below:
 
Bar Council Ruling 7.03: Sharing Office or Premises

Where an Advocate and Solicitor shares an office or premises with another person (“Person”), whether an Advocate and Solicitor or not, the office or premises must be partitioned off with separate and distinct entrances, with no connecting door between the 2 offices or premises.

This Ruling shall not apply to:
 
(a) Advocates and Solicitors of the same law firm; or

(b) an Advocate and Solicitor, or a partner or partners of his/her firm who has/have an interest in the Person, and the Person carries on such business as is permitted under Ruling 5.13A; or

(c) a law firm that is part of an international partnership that has been granted a licence under section 40F of the Legal Profession Act 1976; or

(d) a law firm that is part of a Group Law Practice established under the Legal Profession (Group Law Practice) Rules 2018;
 
provided always that the law firm, and the international partnership and the Group Law Practice preserve and observe at all times the duty of confidentiality in respect of privileged information owed to their respective clients.

The amended Ruling 7.03 took effect on 30 June 2018.

The amendments to the Ruling are in line with the introduction of the Legal Profession (Group Law Practice) Rules 2018, which permit small law firms to practise and operate through a Group Law Practice.  The Rules came into operation on 30 June 2018.  A copy of the Rules (in Bahasa Malaysia and English) is attached, and is also accessible here

For more details, please refer to Bar Council Circular No 166/2018 entitled “Legal Profession (Group Law Practice) Rules 2018 Came into Operation on 30 June 2018” dated 6 July 2018.  

The revised Ruling 7.03 therefore reads as follows: 
 
Bar Council Ruling 7.03: Sharing Office or Premises

Where an Advocate and Solicitor shares an office or premises with another person (“Person”), whether an Advocate and Solicitor or not, the office or premises must be partitioned off with separate and distinct entrances, with no connecting door between the 2 offices or premises.

This Ruling shall not apply to:
 
(a) Advocates and Solicitors of the same law firm; or

(b) an Advocate and Solicitor, or a partner or partners of his/her firm who has/have an interest in the Person, and the Person carries on such business as is permitted under Ruling 5.13A; or

(c) a law firm that is part of an international partnership that has been granted a licence under section 40F of the Legal Profession Act 1976; or

(d) a law firm that is part of a Group Law Practice established under the Legal Profession (Group Law Practice) Rules 2018;

provided always that the law firm, the international partnership and the Group Law Practice preserve and observe at all times the duty of confidentiality in respect of privileged information owed to their respective clients.
 
The updated Rules and Rulings of the Bar Council are accessible here on the Malaysian Bar website.

Should you have any enquiries, please contact Raz Ida Nadira Razali, Officer, by telephone at 03-2050 2090, or by email at raz@malaysianbar.org.my.

Thank you.

Roger Chan Weng Keng
Secretary
Malaysian Bar