OPINION 140
March 1957

SOLICITATION -- ATTORNEY AS SURETY -- An attorney may not act as surety on his client's bond in a criminal case, unless specifically authorized by the Court. Opinion 46 to the extent that it conflicts with this opinion is overruled.

Canon 24.

Question

Does it violate any of the Canons of Ethics for a lawyer who represents a defendant in a criminal case to execute said defendant's appearance or appeal bond as surety, if given permission by the Court to do so?

Opinion

All members of the committee are of the opinion that there is no specific provision of the Canons of Ethics making this a violation. However, since Rule 142 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure now provides:

"No attorney . . . shall be surety in any cause pending in the Court, except under special leave of Court,"

it is felt, even though the above rule is one of civil procedure, that for an attorney to act as surety on his client's bond in a criminal case violates the spirit of the law and of Texas Canon No. 24 and should be condemned as unethical, unless specifically authorized by the Court, and that Opinion No. 46 of this committee to the extent it conflicts with this opinion is overruled. (9-0)