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The Florida Bar
www.floridabar.org
PROFESSIONAL ETHICS OF THE FLORIDA BAR

OPINION 62-72
May 31, 1963

There is nothing improper in an arrangement whereby a bank offers to permit local lawyers to write title insurance on real estate loans referred to the bank by such lawyers, with the bank charging the borrower for services and title insurance and remitting to the lawyer the service charge together with a fee for representing the bank, closing and protecting the bank.

Canons: 6, 34, 38

Chairman Holcomb stated the opinion of the committee:

A member of The Florida Bar submits a letter from the A. National Bank sent to lawyers of the area to permit such lawyers who refer clients to it for real estate loans to write title insurance with a charge by the bank to the borrower for services and for title insurance, the bank remitting to the lawyer the service charges together with a fee for representing the bank, closing and protecting the bank.

The majority of the Committee on Professional Ethics sees nothing improper in such a procedure. One member suggests that this would result either in rendition of non-legal services or in a division of fees, with a possible violation of Canons 6 and 34. This member believes the lawyer should make full disclosure to his client of the fact that he would be receiving payment from the bank.

[Revised: 08-24-2011]