Lawyers anonymity

Grace Haden made this Official Information request to Ministry of Justice

Response to this request is long overdue. By law Ministry of Justice should have responded by now (details and exceptions). The requester can complain to the Ombudsman.

From: Grace Haden

Dear Ministry of Justice,

I have noticed that lawyers hide behind undefined trading names. they do this on their letter heads in demands , trust accounts and in contracts ,

Effectively this allows them to hide and there is no way of knowing which legal person you are contracting to or communicating with especially when there is a non descriptive pp signature .

It is unlawful for nonpersons to provide legal services so when you are contracting for legal services with a so called firm hiding behind a trading name.. who are you contracting to ? How do you enforce the contract or is it only enforceable on the client ?

Please provide documentation and or legislation which allows lawyers and law firms to hide behind an undefined trading name . .

Please advise how lawyers are accountable to the public when a number of lawyers juggle a matter between them and are represented by a firm which is not a legal person.

Has the ministry seen this as an issue and will it investigate to make the contracts ,trust accounts and responsibilities more transparent.

this is especially vital given that a solicitors trust account is exempt from money laundering legislation so how do we know if a trust account is actually a solicitors trust account or not.

Yours faithfully,

Grace Haden

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From: Reception, CF
Ministry of Justice

Hello Grace,

Lawyers do not come under the Ministry of Justice, you would need to send your OIA request to New Zealand Law Society.

Kind regards

Alexandra Thomason
National Office Support Services | Support Services
Commercial & Property | Corporate
Justice Centre | Level 3 | 19 Aitken Street | SX10088 | Wellington
DDI: +64 4 918 8800 | Ext 58800|

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From: Grace Haden

Dear Reception, CF,

thank you for your response

It would appear that there is a gap in the law with regards to lawyers there is legislation which governs lawyers and the law society which all lawyers are members of

the act is administered by the Ministry of Justice. but is written and advised on by lawyers. there is therefore no real impartiality in this legislation and lawyers are the only group of persons who get to write and advise on their own legislation .

I have noted that there is a massive play on words and the act relies on the definition of person. frequently a trading name is used. a trading name when not defined is not a person and cannot represent a person.

Much of what lawyers do is done though this portal of anonymity please provide documentation which shows that the ministry of justice has considered the circumvention of the intention of the rule of law by lawyers through the use of undefined trading names.

Yours sincerely,

Grace Haden

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