December 1974

PUBLICITY NAME OF BUILDING The name "Justice Plaza" may not properly be given to a building which is owned by a group of attorneys although said building is occupied by the attorneys, as well as the County Legal Aid office.


May an attorney-building owner give to his building the name "Justice Plaza" even though such building is occupied by attorneys, as well as by the County Legal Aid office?


DR 2-101 prohibits a lawyer from preparing or causing to be prepared any form of public communication that contains professionally self-laudatory statements calculated to attract lay clients. Such prohibition includes any form of commercial publicity. To give a building such name as to imply that occupants of the building are lawyers is no more than commercial publicity. Such name serves no useful purpose, and is a mere form of indirect solicitation.

Canon 1 provides that a lawyer shall assist in maintaining the integrity of the legal profession. Canon 9 provides that a lawyer should avoid even the appearance of professional impropriety. The conduct in question would also violate the spirit of Canon 1 and Canon 9. Despite the numerous changes in business practices, the legal profession is not relaxing the standard against advertising, and should not.