Legal Ethics Case Digests – Misrepresentation and Non-payment of IBP Dues
Soliman M. Santos, Jr. v. Atty. Francisco R. Llamas
A.C. No. 4749. January 20, 2000
Facts: Complaint for misrepresentation and non-payment of bar membership dues. It appears that Atty. Llamas, who for a number of years now, has not indicated the proper PTR and IBP OR Nos. and data in his pleadings. If at all, he only indicated “IBP Rizal 259060” but he has been using this for at least 3 years already. On the other hand, respondent, who is now of age, averred that he is only engaged in a “limited” practice of law and under RA 7432, as a senior citizen, he is exempted from payment of income taxes and included in this exemption is the payment of membership dues.
Held: GUILTY. Rule 139-A requires that every member of the Integrated Bar shall pay annual dues and default thereof for six months shall warrant suspension of membership and if nonpayment covers a period of 1-year, default shall be a ground for removal of the delinquent’s name from the Roll of Attorneys. It does not matter whether or not respondent is only engaged in “limited” practice of law. Moreover, the exemption invoked by respondent does not include exemption from payment of membership or association dues.
In addition, by indicating “IBP Rizal 259060” in his pleadings and thereby misprepresenting to the public and the courts that he had paid his IBP dues to the Rizal Chpater, respondent is guilty of violating the Code of Professional Responsibility which provides: Rule 1.01 – A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful conduct. His act is also a violation of Rule 10.01 which provides that: A lawyer shall not do any falsehood, nor consent to the doing of any in court; nor mislead or allow the court to be misled by any artifice.
Lawyer was suspended for 1 year or until he has paid his IBP dues, whichever is later.
Legal Ethics Digests
Ateneo Central Bar Ops 2001
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