OPINION 361
March 1972

TELEPHONE LISTING A listing of a lawyer in the alphabetical and classified sections of the telephone directory or directories for the metropolitan area in which the lawyer resides or maintains his office or in which a significant part of his clientele resides is proper.

DR 2-102(A)(5)

Question

  1. Is it improper for an attorney to contract for listings in the yellow pages of the telephone directories in a metropolitan area which is served by more than one telephone company and has more than one telephone directory?
  2. What constitutes a significant part of the clientele when used in connection with such listings?

Opinion

An attorney may have a listing in the alphabetical and classified sections of the telephone directory or directories for the metropolitan area in which the lawyer resides or maintains his office or in which a significant part of his clientele resides, but the listing may give only the name of the lawyer, the fact he is a lawyer, address and telephone number and shall not be in distinctive form or type and shall be in the classified section under the proper heading. See DR 2-102(A)(5) Texas Code of Professional Responsibility.

The telephone directory is to be used only for the purpose of facilitating communication between persons using the telephone and not for the purpose of permitting lawyers to advertise. Sub-section (5) of Section (A) of DR 2-102 being an exception should be strictly construed.

The determination of what constitutes a metropolitan or geographical area is a fact question to be determined by the Grievance Committee or other body passing on such question.

What is a significant part of the clientele of a lawyer, is likewise a fact question. One lawyer may have one client who has sufficient work to constitute essentially all of his clientele, while another lawyer might have a great number of clients due to the small amount of work from each.