That judge is actually the chief disciplinary judge for lawyers in 1/4 of New York State, and it is through her efforts that the attorney monopoly for court representation is maintained and reinforced, blocking indigent people's access to justice and making sure that the regulation "serves" only the rich who can afford a lawyer without any regulation and do not need protection against their own lawyers because they have enough money to obtain that protection through malpractice lawsuits and political pressure.
In the same "Law Day" splurge of articles by judges, yet another remarkable article appeared, authored by Chief Administrative Judge of the State of New York Lawrence Marks, with this intriguing headline:
In that article, Chief Administrative Judge Marks
stated this (among other things, of course):
But, that was a predictable - and desirable for lawyers - result of attorney monopoly. Any economist worth his salt will tell you that a monopoly creates:
- a shortage of providers of goods and services;
- an increase in prices; and
- a never licensed paralegal;
- a licensed attorney;
- a consumer of legal services;
- a suspended or disbarred attorney; or
- a nonlawyer "helper", like Judge Marks is describing in his article.
But, wait a minute - isn't such an "aid of a trained non-lawyer" a crime of unauthorized practice of law?
It is, according to Matter of Castillo, and Matter of Brandes, and the latter was affirmed by New York State's top court.
Yet, Judge Marks marches right on:
So, Judge Marks tells you that appearing in court with an unlicensed individual, a "non-lawyer", "can greatly improve a litigant's court experience and also affects outcomes".
Committing a crime on both sides (litigant and non-lawyer) of unauthorized practice of law or aiding and abetting UPL greatly improves outcomes of a court case - that's what the Chief Administrative Judge of the State of New York advises litigants on Law Day?
Judge Marks plunges right through, admitting now that courts, the very same branch that regulates the undefined "practice of law" and enforces criminal laws against unauthorized practice of law, actually break that same law themselves by doing this - courts are "harnessing" (whatever that cute word means) "the skills of non-lawyer volunteers to assist people in need". In other words, courts that are supposed to enforce the law, are aiding and abetting unauthorized practice of law, in order to help the public overcome the justice gap created by regulation of the undefined "practice of law".
If ANY of these "services" would be provided by me, my husband, or any other suspended attorney, we would be immediately dragged out of court in handcuffs, for unauthorized practice of law. So, why the "navigators", whose educational level is not known, who may not have even a high school diploma, allowed to work as substitute lawyers, and practice law without any license?
Why do we need regulation of the "practice of law" at all, if it causes the "justice gap", and if courts themselves disregard it by allowing this "bypass solution" of unlicensed "law navigators" practicing law in violation of New York Criminal Code?
Because regulation is for the rich?
Because representation by "navigators" are for the so-called "needy" people?
Then, what prevents the State of New York to just cancel regulation of the practice of law, so that the "needy people" can simply choose whoever they want to represent them in court?
Why control people's private choice of their own providers?
Chief Administrative Judge Marks writes:
Helping litigants file answers in Housing Court may be the practice of law in New York. At least, it will be if I (a suspended attorney) try to do that.
Since there is no "navigator" exclusion in the UPL criminal statute in New York, Judge Marks is praising people committing the crime of UPL.
Moreover, Judge Marks points out that advice from nonlawyers may "improve outcomes" for litigants in court.
Of course, there are questions to such a hilarious approach to court representation.
- Why did it suddenly stop being a crime of UPL for "navigators", "Legal Hand" and such like "helpers"?
- Who amended the UPL statute so that it is no longer a crime - Judge Marks? He has no authority to do that;
- Why it is OK, under the current scheme of attorney regulation that established attorney monopoly specifically to protect consumers from incompetent service providers that in "consumer court" especially, people will be represented by non-attorneys, "consumer advocates", while opposed by licensed attorneys represented banks? So, Judge Marks finally recognized that representation by a licensed attorney is the privilege of the rich? If that is so, who does attorney regulation protect? Those rich people who can afford to protect themselves?
- did law school education, bar exam, fitness committee and law license become obsolete because, as Judge Marks confirmed, as "research shows", representation by non-attorneys is just as good and improves outcomes of otherwise unrepresented parties?