May 1963

SOLICITATION—ADVERTISING NEW OFFICES—OPEN HOUSE—A law firm may not directly, or indirectly by cooperation with contractors or suppliers, advertise to the public at large, either by newspapers or mailed announcements, that an open house will be held in its new law offices.

Canon 24.


A law firm is moving into newly remodeled, renovated and refurnished law offices in a building which it purchased.

1. Can it advertise in a local newspaper the change of address and an open house at a particular time when refreshments will be served?

2. Can it send out mail invitations to persons located in this city advising as to the removal and open house?

3. Can the contractors and furniture suppliers advertise in the newspaper that the building in question has been remodeled and the people are invited to an open house?

4. Can the furniture suppliers advertise in the local paper that they have furnished the offices in the particular building and invite the people to inspect the furnishings?


As Mr. Justice Frankfurter once pronounced, "This is a horse quickly curried." Opinions 102, 218, 221 and 223 require a negative answer to each of the four proposals; those opinions delineate the only possible announcements which maybe made. Proposals 1 and 2 obviously violate Canon 24. Proposals 3 and 4 inquire specifically as to the conduct of non-lawyers and they are not controlled by the Canons, but the lawyers of necessity would be parties to the advertising incident to proposals 3 and 4 and by permitting same they would just as obviously violate Canon 24 as if they conducted the advertising themselves. (9-0.)