11.03 Duty to report misconduct
A solicitor is under a duty to report to the Council, where necessary after having obtained his client’s consent, any professional misconduct or dishonesty on the part of another solicitor or a member of his staff, or of any other person purporting to represent or to be in the employment of another solicitor or firm. Commentary
Where a solicitor has reason to believe that another solicitor is in financial difficulty or where his integrity is in question, he should report the facts to the Council. 2
The principle that a solicitor must maintain the highest standards of professional conduct and ensure that those in his employment do likewise, extends to a duty to inform the Council of professional misconduct or dishonesty in his own or any other firm. 3
A solicitor should inform the Law Society where he is charged with an offence involving dishonesty or deception or any other serious criminal offence.
2.03 Principal’s individual responsibility
A sole practitioner and each partner is prima facie responsible for the acts or omissions of his firm and this extends to the acts or omissions of his partners and staff. Commentary
1. A principal cannot escape responsibility for work carried out in the course of his practice by leaving it to his staff, however well qualified.
2. Specific applications of this general principle are set out in the Solicitors’ Practice Rules with which all solicitors must comply. 3.
Every principal is personally responsible for complying with the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules (Cap. 159 sub. leg.) and the Accountant’s Report Rules (Cap. 159 sub. leg.). All the principals will be liable to disciplinary action if there is a failure to comply with these Rules.
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