The Florida Bar

Ethics Opinion

Opinion 76-6

FLORIDA BAR ETHICS OPINION
OPINION 76-6
February 15, 1977
Advisory ethics opinions are not binding.
Members of a Florida law firm that has offices in two counties may be listed in the classified
telephone directory for both counties if they do legal work for a substantial number of clients in
each county.
CPR:
Opinions:

DR 2-102(A)(5)
74-14, 74-19, 74-23

Chairman Sullivan stated the opinion of the committee:
A Florida law firm maintains offices in two counties. Four of the lawyers in
the firm who reside and primarily work out of the firm’s offices in the first county
frequently use the firm’s office in the second county in connection with legal
matters they handle in that county.
Those four lawyers ask whether they may properly be listed in the classified
section of the telephone directory for the second county. The listings would
include their designations in accordance with the standards established by The
Florida Bar.
The Committee is of the opinion that they may properly do so. In combined Opinions
74-14, 74-19 and 74-23 [all since withdrawn], we referred to DR 2-102(A)(5), which permits
listings in classified directories in areas in which a lawyer resides [or] has an office or in which a
significant part of his clientele resides. In those opinions, we were faced with the propriety of a
lawyer having a classified listing in an area where he did not maintain an office but where a
substantial part of his clientele resided. We concluded that it was permissible but emphasized the
need for lawyers to make a good faith effort in determining the boundaries of the “area” or
“areas.”
In reaching the conclusion we do here, we are not deciding that because the law firm has
offices in two counties all the lawyers in the firm have offices in the two counties within the
meaning of DR 2-102(A)(5).
We interpret the statement that the four lawyers are frequently in the office in the second
county in connection with legal matters they handle in that county to mean that a substantial
number of the firm’s clients for whom those four lawyers handle legal matters reside in the
second county, and it is upon that interpretation that we base our conclusion.