December 1966


An attorney may not use any assumed name in connection with his law practice and he may not capitalize upon an assumed name by legally changing his name.

Canons 30, 24.


Attorney John Doe has engaged in the radio and television business for many years under an assumed name and has become widely known by his assumed name. He inquires (1) whether he can ethically conduct his law practice under the assumed name, and if not (2) whether he can legally change his name to the popularized assumed name and then ethically conduct his law practice in such name.


The answer to the first inquiry is clearly "no." Canon 30 expressly prohibits the use of any assumed name for the practice of law. (8-0.)

As to the second inquiry, one member of the Committee feels that an attorney, like any other person, may legally change his name to any name he desires and practice law in that name without violating any of the Canons of Ethics. The majority of the Committee, however, is of the opinion that a legal change of name for the purpose of capitalizing upon the popularity of an assumed name would constitute solicitation in violation of Canon 24. The Committee so rules. (6-2. )