Sie sind auf Seite 1von 18

UNIT 2: THE LEGAL PROFESSION

The objectives of this unit are:

 

to develop skills in:

to teach and practise these language items:

Section

Speaking

Listening

Writing

Reading

A.

The Legal

Group discussion

 

Supplying a

Multiple-choice exercise to check the understanding of the main points

Intensive reading

finding synonyms

Profession in the UK

based on questions Negotiating

summary with the missing information from the text

Filling in a chart

providing legal

terms based on their

 

definitions

clauses

using relative

B. Choosing a Career

expressing opinions giving arguments pair discussion prompted by a text

   

Scanning

collocations the language of advertising

C. Notaries Public

eliciting/ providing

 

writing a list of

predicting

asking and

information role play (dialogue)

issues drawing up a power of attorney

Romanian text

scanning a

answering questions matching definitions with their corresponding legal terms

D. Round Up

   

transferring acquired information on a chart

   

UUNNIITT TTHHRREEEE:: TTHHEE LLEEGGAALL PPRROOFFEESSSSIIOONN

SSE

CCT

EEC

S

TTI IIO OON NN AA: ::

A

TTHHE

H

T

EE LLE

L

GGA

EEG

AAL

LL PPR

P

RRO

OOF

SSS

FFE

EES

SSI IIO OON NN IIN

I

NN TTH

HHE

T

EE UUK

KK

U

A 1

Pre-reading discussion

WWh

hha

W

Work in groups and try to answer as many of the following questions as possible:

aat tt ddo

d

oo yyo

oou

y

uu kkn

k

ww aab

nno

oow

a

bbo

uut tt tth

oou

hhe ee lle eeg gga aal ll ppr rro oof ffe ees sss ssi iio oon nn n RRo

t

l

p

iinn

i

R

oom

mma

nni iia aa? ??

aan

1. What are the main branches of the legal profession in Romania?

2. What is the difference between a lawyer, a public prosecutor and a judge?

3. What basic responsibilities and duties do the above mentioned professionals have?

4. Do you know the necessary steps one must take in order to become a lawyer in Romania?

5. How are Romanian lawyers organized on national and local level?

6. Are there any major differences between the legal profession in our country and in Britain?

A 2

You are going to read a text about the legal profession in the UK. Read the whole text and check your understanding of the main points by completing each sentence below with the correct alternative from a, b and c.

RRe R eea aad ddi iin nng gg

1. Lawyers may exercise their profession

(a)

as lawyers, solicitors and barristers;

(b)

as solicitors and barristers;

(c)

as solicitors, barristers and judges

2. The controlling body for solicitors is:

(a)

the Law Society

(b)

the Inns of Court

(c)

the Bar Council

3. All lawyers undergo an extensive period of education through:

(a)

practical training

(b)

formal academic learning

(c)

both

4. In the case of solicitors the practical training takes the form of:

(a)

one-year training

(b)

two-year training

(c)

three-year training

5. A barrister must join:

(a)

one of the four Inns of Court

(b)

the Inns of Court

(c)

the Law Society

6. The barrister’s task is:

(a)

to present the case

(b)

to express the arguments on the client’s behalf

(c)

both

7. Solicitors

(a)

deal directly with the client

(b)

ensure that the barrister chosen is properly and fully instructed

(c)

do both of the above and some other tasks as well

8. Barristers have:

(a)

limited rights of audience

(b)

full rights of audience

(c)

rights of audience in lower courts

2

The legal profession is divided into two branches, barristers and solicitors. The former are legal practitioners, who have been admitted to plead at the bar and who are engaged in conducting the trial or argument of causes; they have exclusive right of audience in the Supreme Court. The latter assemble the materials necessary for presentation in court and settle cases out of court. They may also practise in most inferior courts, such as county courts and certain proceedings of the Crown Court.

Each have their own controlling bodies - the Bar Council and the Law Society respectively - and an intending lawyer must decide, at a relatively early stage in legal training, whether to practise as a solicitor or a barrister, because apart from the initial period of legal education (usually a law degree course) the two branches are mutually exclusive in terms of personnel and training, although rather less so in terms of their work. The controlling bodies exercise strict codes of professional ethics and standards of practice: this is one of the ways in which the exclusivity of the profession, and its claim to produce high standards of work, are maintained. Both bodies act as disciplinary agencies to deal with any alleged breach of these codes, and for serious breaches a member of either branch of the legal profession may be “struck off”.

This exclusivity is further promoted by the impact of training and socialisation. All lawyers undergo extensive periods of education, both through formal academic learning and through practical training in legal work. In the case of solicitors, this practical training takes the form of a two-year period, after obtaining a law degree and completing the one-year Legal Practice Course, in a training contract with a firm of practitioners. For intending barristers, the period of training is rather more complicated and less financially secure, but possibly more intensive because of the immersion of the novice in the traditions and practices of the Bar. Apart from undertaking various examinations in the law, the prospective barrister must also join one of the four Inns of Court, where the life of the barrister is learned. The various rules and institutions of the Bar serve to socialise the novice into the established ways of that branch of the profession, where customs, traditions and etiquette play so great a part. Barristers’ professional, and often much of their social, life involves an exclusive and somewhat socially isolated experience where the company in which they move comprises, very often, other barristers and judges who are members of the same Inn.

For many people, the image of the typical lawyer and his work is that presented in the formal setting of the courtroom. Here, it is traditionally the barrister, in wig and gown, who presents the case and expresses the arguments on the client’s behalf; the solicitor’s task is to deal directly with the client, to ensure that the barrister chosen is properly and fully instructed, to collect and collate all relevant evidence (such as witnesses, statements, letters, photographs and so on) and to ensure that all relevant persons are present in court on the day of the trial.

This image of lawyers and their work is, however, somewhat misleading: the traditional division of functions in the courtroom has gradually been broken down. Although only barristers have full ‘rights of audience’ (that is, the right to address the judges’ bench directly on the client’s behalf) in all courts, solicitors have full rights of audience, too, in magistrates’ and county courts, and in some Crown courts.

Source: Harris, Phil (1997) An Introduction to Law, Butterworths

3

INFO BOX. Do you know what the following terms mean?

Inns of Court

Bar Council

Any of the four autonomous institutions, one or more of which English barristers must join to receive their training and of which they remain members for life: the Honourable Societies of Lincoln’s Inn, the Middle Temple, the Inner Temple, and Gray’s Inn. These powerful bodies examine candidates for the Bar, “call” them to the Bar, and award the degree of Barrister. Garner, Bryan A (ed. in chief) (1999) Black’s Law Dictionary St. Paul, Minn.: West Group

The common name for the General Council of the Bar of England and Wales which in 1894 replaced the Bar Committee. It comprised the Law Officers, the Chairman and Vice-chairman, 48 elected practising barristers, additional members appointed on account of their position or to represent any section of the Bar not adequately represented, and persons co-opted Honoris Causa. It was supported by contributions from the Inns of Court and subscriptions. It issued rulings and gave guidance on professional etiquette and conduct but had no disciplinary power. It was concerned generally with the independence, honour and integrity of the Bar and the improvement of the administration of justice. In 1974 it, and the Senate of the Four Inns of Court, was replaced by the Senate of the Inns of Court and the Bar and a new Bar Council came into existence exercising through its Bar Committee, exclusive jurisdiction in matters of professional conduct and etiquette falling short of disciplinary proceedings. Walker, David (1980) The Oxford Companion to Law OUP

Crown Court

An English court having jurisdiction over major criminal cases. Crown Courts date from 1971, when they assumed the criminal jurisdiction of the Assize Courts and all the jurisdiction of the Courts of Quarter Sessions. Garner, Bryan A (ed. in chief) (1999) Black’s Law Dictionary St. Paul, Minn.: West Group

The Law Society

A professional organisation in England, chartered in 1845, governing the education, practice, and conduct of articled clerks and solicitors. A clerk or solicitor must be enrolled with the Law Society to be admitted to he legal profession. Garner, Bryan A (ed. in chief) (1999) Black’s Law Dictionary St. Paul, Minn.: West Group

 
 

A 3

Fill in the blanks with words from the text.

The legal profession is divided into (1) branches: (2) and (3) Their controlling bodies are
The legal profession is divided into (1)
branches: (2)
and (3)
Their controlling bodies are (4)
to deal with any (6)
and (5)
Both bodies act as disciplinary agencies
of their codes. For serious (7)
a member of either branch
of the (8)
profession may be “(9)
”.
All lawyers undergo extensive periods of (10)
, both through academic (11)
and practical (12)
takes the form of a (13)
in legal work. In the case of solicitors this practical training
period. For (14)
the period of training is more
complicated. The prospective barrister must also join one of the four (15)
of the barrister is learned. Traditionally the (16)
and expresses the arguments on the client’s (18)
in wig and gown (17)
, where the life
the case
The solicitor deals with the (19)
,
and ensures that all relevant persons are present in (22)
chooses a properly and fully instructed (20)
,
collects relevant (21)
on the day of the (23)
Although only barristers have full (24)
in all courts, solicitors have rights of
audience in (25)
courts, (26)
courts and in some (27)
courts.

4

A 4 Study the following table and supply the missing information from the text.  

A 4

Study the following table and supply the missing information from the text.

 

SOLICITOR

 

BARRISTER

 

A

legal practitioner in the UK. The

A

member of the Bar, the professional body of

position and the rights, duties, obligations

barristers also known as Counsel or if the Counsel has taken silk to become a QC – Queen’s Counsel (or KC, King’s Counsel when the monarch is male), Senior Counsel. The

and privileges are now regulated by

statute. The UK still has a distinction on

the

one hand between the ordinary lawyer

who is a man of affairs and a generalists who (in England especially) does not essentially appear in courts, and on the other hand the barrister or advocate. However, the distinction is becoming blurred with the creation of the solicitor advocate. Stewart, W J & Robert Burgess (1996) Collins Dictionary – Law Glasgow:

Harper Collins, Publishers

barrister becomes such by virtue of being called

to

one of the Inns of Court (Lincoln’s Inn, Inner

Temple, Middle Temple and Grays Inn). His liability for mistakes is not the same as that of other professional persons because of the public interest in having litigation concluded. He is

bound by the ‘cab rank’ principle by which any barrister in practice must accept any instructions to appear before a court on a subject that he professes to practice and at a proper fee. he has a duty to the court that is paramount and so is not in any sense a ‘mouthpiece’. His fees are an honorarium not a contractually due payment and so he cannot sue for them but may refer a defaulting solicitor to the Law Society. Similar terminology is used in the Republic of Ireland. However a Senior Counsel there is a person called to the Inner Bar by the Chief Justice with the approval of he Government, and obviously

 

is

not to be designated QC or KC. Stewart, W J & Robert Burgess (1996) Collins Dictionary – Law Glasgow: Harper Collins, Publishers

Controlling

   

body

Education and

   

training

Duties

   

Rights of

   

audience

A.5. Group discussion

1. Individually, on the basis of what you have read in the text, write down in one sentence what you consider to be the most important difference between the way the legal profession is organised in England and Romania.

2. Then read out what you have written to the members of your group, while one person acts as a scribe, putting down the different ideas.

5

3.

Working together in your group, try to negotiate a single joint statement, which must then be read aloud to the entire class.

4. Continue negotiating until you reach a final conclusion.

A

A 6 1

6

LLaan

a

L

gge ee WWo

nng

ggu

aag

uua

W

oor rrk kk

gge ee AAw

LLa

L

aan

nng

ggu

uua

aag

A

wwa

aar rre een nne ees sss ss

Read the text once again and try to answer the questions on the left:

6

1. Does the underlined word mean

‘practising’ lawyer?

The legal profession is divided into two branches, solicitors and barristers. Each have their own controlling bodies - the Law Society and the Bar Council respectively - and an intending lawyer must decide, at a relatively early stage in legal training, whether to practise as a solicitor or a barrister, because apart from the initial period of legal education (usually a law degree course) the two branches are mutually exclusive in terms of personnel and training, although rather less so in terms of their work. The controlling bodies exercise strict codes of professional ethics and standards of practice: this is one of the ways in which the exclusivity of the profession, and its claim to produce high standards of work, are maintained. Both bodies act as disciplinary agencies to deal with any alleged breach of these codes, and for serious breaches a member of either branch of the legal profession may be “struck off”. This exclusivity is further promoted by the impact of training and socialisation. All lawyers undergo extensive periods of education, both through formal academic learning and through practical training in legal work. In the case of solicitors, this practical training takes the form of a two-year period, after obtaining a law degree and completing the one- year Legal Practice Course, in a training contract with a firm of practitioners. For intending barristers, the period of training is rather more complicated and less financially secure, but possibly more intensive because of the immersion of the novice in the traditions and practices of the Bar. Apart from undertaking various examinations in the law, the prospective barrister must also join one of the four Inns of Court, where the life of the barrister is learned. The various rules and institutions of the Bar serve to socialise the novice into the established ways of that branch of the profession, where customs, traditions and etiquette play so great a part. Barristers’ professional, and often much of their social, life involves an exclusive and somewhat socially isolated experience where the company in which they move comprises, very often, other barristers and judges who are members of the same Inn. For many people, the image of the typical lawyer and his work is that presented in the formal setting of the courtroom. Here, it is

traditionally the barrister, in wig and gown, who presents the case and

expresses the arguments on the client’s behalf; the solicitor’s task is to deal directly with the client, to ensure that the barrister chosen is properly and fully instructed, to collect and collate all relevant evidence (such as witnesses, statements, letters, photographs and so on) and to ensure that all relevant persons are present in court on the day of the trial.

This image of lawyers and their work is, however, somewhat misleading: the traditional division of functions in the courtroom has gradually been broken down. Although only barristers have full ‘rights of audience’ (that is, the right to address the judges’ bench directly on the client’s behalf) in all courts, solicitors have full rights of audience, too, in magistrates’ and county courts, and in some Crown courts.

Source: Harris, Phil (1997) An Introduction to Law, Butterworths

2. Can you replace this infinitive with

a that clause? Is it a good idea to do

this?

with a that clause? Is it a good idea to do this? 3. Can you say

3. Can you say ‘a two-years period’?

Why (not)?

3. Can you say ‘a two-year s period’ ? Why (not) ? 4. Can you rephrase

4. Can you rephrase this expression

using another one with the same meaning?

5. Explain the role of this construction.

the same meaning? 5. Explain the role of this construction. 6. Could you replace ensure with
the same meaning? 5. Explain the role of this construction. 6. Could you replace ensure with
the same meaning? 5. Explain the role of this construction. 6. Could you replace ensure with

6. Could you replace ensure with

assure?

LANGUAGE BOX

TO ASSURE = to tell (sb) positively or confidently [e.g. I assure you they’ll be perfectly safe with us] TO ENSURE = to make sure, guarantee [ e.g. The book ensured his success.

7

Please ensure that all the lights are switched off at night.] TO INSURE sb./smth. (against) = to make a contract that promises to pay somebody an amount of money in case of accident, injury, death, etc., or damage to or loss of something [I lost my camera on holiday and I wasn’t insured for it. All our household goods are insured against accidental damage.] Hornby, A S (1989) Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary OUP

A 6

11. 1

22. 2

33. 3

44. 4

55. 5

66. 6

77. 7

88. 8

99. 9

110 1

111 1

112 1

113 1

114 1

115 1

22 2

Find synonyms in the text for the following words or expressions:

authority having the power to control something

breaking or neglecting of a law/ agreement

to collect together and arrange

unwritten laws observed by members of a profession

hall in which a court is held

inexperienced person/ beginner

information proving something

involve oneself in something

person summoned to testify in court

removed from membership of a professional body

rules of conduct observed by professional groups

staff

stated without being proved

the seat of a judge in court

to work as a lawyer/doctor

e.g. controlling body

A 6 33 3

Further Vocabulary Practice

How many words have you learned so far?

Provide the legal terms corresponding to the following definitions:

1

11

e.g. Magistrate’s Court

aa

a

its principal function is to provide the forum in which all criminal prosecutions are initiated; it has limited jurisdiction in civil matters

2

22

 

bb

b

any of the civil courts forming a system covering all of England and

Wales

3

33

 

c

cc

the right of an advocate to be heard in legal proceedings

4

44

 

dd

d

part of the Supreme Court of Judicature which has an unlimited jurisdiction over all criminal cases tried on indictment and also acts as

a

court for the hearing of appeals from magistrates’ courts

5

55

 

e

ee

person who is trained and qualified in legal matters

6

66

 

ff

f

legal practitioner admitted to plead at the Bar, acting for parties in

a

courts and tribunals; s/he also undertakes the writing of opinions

7

77

 

gg

g

state official with power to adjudicate on disputes and other matters brought before the courts for decision

a

8

88

 

hh

h

a

and magistrates

body established by law for the administration of justice by judges

9

99

 

ii

i

justice of the peace (JP) sitting in the lowest court; most of them

a

are lay persons and have no formal legal qualifications

00

110

1

 

jj

j

the professional body for solicitors in England and Wales furthering the professional interests of solicitors

11

111

1

 

kk

k

legal practitioner who possesses a practising certificate; undertaking

a

the general aspects of giving legal advice and conducting legal

proceedings

8

22

112

1

ll

l

person who argues a case for a client in court

33

113

1

mm

m

a

representative organisation for furthering the interests of barristers

44

114

1

nn

n

ancient legal societies situated in central London; every barrister must belong to one of these societies

115

55

1

oo

o

a

person who judges less serious cases in a local lawcourt; a magistrate

Definitions adapted after Oxford Dictionary of Law (1997) OUP and Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary(1989) OUP

A 6 44 4

Grammar focus

Study the following examples from the text. What is the function of the underlined part in each sentence? Is it possible to remove the underlined words in either of the sentences and still retain the main sense?

1. … the prospective barrister must also join one of the four Inns of Court, where the life of the barrister is learned.

2. the company in which they move comprises, very often, other barristers and judges who are members of the same Inn.

Now check the following grammar box, in which the two types of relative clauses are defined.

RELATIVE CLAUSES

DEFINING A defining relative clause specifies which person or thing we mean. It cannot be separated from the person or thing it describes.

NONDEFINING

A non-defining relative clause contains extra information. In writing it is separated by commas, and in speech, if used at all, is usually indicated by intonation.

E.g. She despised men who were weak. [She despised those men who were weak.]

E.g. She despised men, who were weak.

[She despised all men; they were weak.]

Can you find any other examples of defining and nondefining relative clauses in the text?

First match the beginnings of the sentences in column I with their endings in column II. Then consider whether a comma is necessary to separate them. When both a defining and a non-defining relative clause can be used, try to find the difference of meaning between them. See the examples below.

a. The judge addressed the jury members whose attention had been captured by the defending lawyer. (only those jurors who were fascinated with the defence plea)

b. The judge addressed the jury members, whose attention had been captured by the defending lawyer. (all the jurors)

11 1 22

2

33

3

44

4

55

5

66

6

77

7

88

8

GG

G

             

9

I

II

1. The judge addressed the jury members…

2. Equity used to be administered in the Court of Chancery…

3. A barrister … … may be disbarred.

4. The solicitor owes a contractual duty of care to his client…

5. Solicitors have functions…

6. Judges have discretionary power…

7. Anyone… … must undergo training at one of the four Inns of Court.

8. A barrister is an advocate…

A. where people could take their cases if they were dissatisfied with common law rulings.

B. who is guilty of professional misconduct…

C. … for breach of which he is liable to an action for damages.

D. … which include giving advice to clients, and preparing legal documentation.

E. … to create new rules of law when none exists to solve the case.

F. …whose task is to present his client’s case effectively in court.

G. … whose attention had been captured by the defending lawyer.

H. … wishing to specialise as a barrister.

10

SSe eec cct tti iio oon nn BB

S

B

CCH

HHO

C

OOO

OOS

SSI IIN NNG GG AA CCA

A C

AAR

RRE

EEE

EER

RR

B 1

Would you like to work for a large or a small firm of lawyers? Scan the advertisements for legal

positions below and choose one such job that might appeal to you.

firm of lawyers? Scan the advertisements for legal positions below and choose one such job that

11

12

12

13

13

B 2

Present your choice in front of the class by supporting it with arguments including:

educational and experience requirements you might have/be able to meet advantages and disadvantages of accepting such a position responsibilities/duties involved specific skills required (computer and keyboard skills; communication skills; administrative and analytical skills) personal qualities (adaptability, decisiveness) financial/career benefits and satisfactions that working in that particular branch might offer you.

Has the presentation of the ad (choice of words, style, layout) influenced you in any way?

BB B 3

LLa

L

aan

nng

ggu

aag

uua

gge ee aaw

wwa

a

aar rre een nne ees sss ss

TTh

hhe ee aad

T

vve eer rrt tti iis sse eem mme een nnt tts ss aab

ddv

a

bbo

a

oov

t

c

vve ee cco

nnt tta aai iin nn cco

oon

c

ool lll llo ooc cca aat tti iio oon nns ss ((r rre eeg ggu uul lla aar rr cco

aar rri iioouus ss jjo

wwh

(

mmb

oom

c

hhi iic cchh

v

bbi iin nna aat tti iio oon nns ss oof ff wwo

h vve eer rrb bbs ss iin

c

s

o

oor rrd dds ss) )) dde ees ssc ccr rri iib bbi iin nng gg ssk

w

d

s

nn tth

i

hhe ee cco

t

ool llu uum mmn nn cca

aan

c

nn bbe ee cco

b

ppl lle ees

kki iil lll lls ss oor rr

o

bbi iin nne eed dd

mmb

oom

c

bbi iil lli iit tti iie ees ss rre eeqqu

aab

a

r

q

wwi iit tth hh tth

w

hhee

t

uui iir rre eed dd oof ff aap

o

ppp

a

ppl lli iic cca aan nnt tts ss ffo

f

oor rr vva

v

nn tth

hhe ee rro

oow

r

b

j

ww bbe eel llo oow TTh

ou

bbs

oob

DDe eec cci iid dde ee w

D

e nnoou

o

n

nns ss ppr rri iin nnt tte eed dd iin

uun

p

i

hhe een nn ssc cca aan nn tth

T

s

t

hhe ee tte eex xxt tts ss tto

t

t

f

oo ffi iin nnd dd sso

oom

mme ee mmo

m

oor rre ee eex

aam

xxa

e

mmp

 

recommen-

research

horizons

knowledge

matters

legal

case-

work-

Ability

dations

/development

team

load

load

make

               

undertake

                 

adapt to

                 

demonstrate

                 

contribute to

                 

handle

                 

decide

                 

extend

                 

do

                 

expand

                 

B 4

Read the following text and, in pairs, discuss the issues prompted by the questions

on the right. Then compare your answers with the rest of the class.

Even lawyers with the same qualifications and professional titles may be doing very different kinds of work. Most towns in the United States, for example, have small firms of attorneys who are in daily contact with ordinary people, giving advice and acting on matters such as consumer affairs, traffic accident disputes and contracts for the sale of land. Some may also prepare defences for clients accused of crimes. However, in both the United States and other industrialized countries, lawyers are becoming more and more specialised. Working in small firms, lawyers now tend to restrict themselves to certain kinds of work, and lawyers working in large firms or employed in the law department of a large commercial enterprise work on highly specific areas of law. One lawyer may be employed by a

Another may work for

(2). Another may be part of a

Wall street firm of over a hundred lawyers who specialise in

mining company just to a newspaper

(1).

(3).

As well as the type of work, the working conditions and pay among members of the legal profession also vary greatly. For some people, the image of a lawyer is someone who leads a very wealthy and comfortable life. However, it should not be forgotten that there are also lawyers whose lives are not secure.

The Wall Street attorney probably earns a high salary, but the small firm giving advice to members of the public on welfare rights or immigration

14

a. How do Romanian

lawyers practise law?

What is the general tendency nowadays?

b. Provide examples for

the type of work that lawyers in situations (1), (2) and (3) may have to

do.

c. Which branch of legal

procedures may have to restrict salaries in order to stay in business. There are lawyers in developing countries whose business with fee-paying clients subsidizes the work they agree to do for little or no payment for citizens’ rights groups. (…) In countries where the government ensures that all people have access to a lawyer in an emergency, there are firms that specialize in dealing with people who would not be able to pay for legal services out of their own pocket. For example, in England anyone facing criminal prosecution is entitled to choose a firm of lawyers to represent him. If his income is below a certain level he will not be asked to pay: the firm will keep a record of its costs and will apply to the government-funded Legal Aid Board for payment.

Adapted after Powell, R. (1993) Law Today Longman

SSe eec cct tti iio oon nn CC

S

C

NNO

N

OOT

AAR

TTA

RRI IIE EES SS PPU

UUB

P

BBL

LLI IIC CC

professionals enjoys the highest financial rewards?

d. Are Romanian citizens entitled to free legal assistance? In criminal or civil cases?

CC. C

1 1

In the definitions of the documents below, the headwords are missing. Supply them correctly, by

choosing from among the ones in the box.

power of attorney

will

affidavit

statement

instrument

codicil

deed

conveyancing document

1.

= official power which gives someone the right to act on someone’s behalf in legal

matters

2.

= written statement which is signed and sworn before a solicitor and which can then be used as evidence in court hearings

3.

= a general term for a legal document

4.

= declaration of fact; an allegation by a witness

5.

= legal document by which a person gives instructions to his executors as to how his property should be disposed of after his death

6.

= a later addition to a will, especially one that changes part of it

7.

= legal document which has been signed, sealed and delivered by the person making it

8. = document which legally transfers a property from a seller to a buyer Definitions adapted after Collin, PH (1986) Dictionary of Law Peter Collin Publishing and Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary(1989) OUP

CC. C

1 2

Which of the following legal professionals are entitled to perform notarial functions.

judges

barristers

notaries public

justices of the peace

counsels

consuls

solicitors

ambassadors

attorneys

lawyers

legal advisors

magistrates

C. 2. INFO BOX

In most civil law countries, the practising legal profession is officially divided to some extent, at least between lawyers and notaries. The notary occupies a special position in civil law systems. Unlike the common law figure with the same name, the civil law notary is an important legal personage. The notary has three major functions: drafting certain documents, such as marriage contracts, wills, mortgages, and conveyances; certifying documents which then have a special evidentiary status in court proceedings; and serving as a depository for the original copies of wills and the like. There are a limited number of notary’s offices established by law. A law graduate who wishes to be a notary must pass a special examination and then for a vacancy. Unlike the regular lawyer, a notary is supposed to be impartial and to instruct and advise all parties involved in the transactions he/she handles. Because of the nature of these transactions, the notary often becomes a trusted family legal advisor whose assistance is needed in connection with the property aspects of such major events as marriages, divorces and death of a family member. There are very few notaries public in England, and most are also practising solicitors. The few specialist notaries practise in London, where they deal mainly with the preparation of documents for use in foreign countries.

15

Sources: Glendon, Mary Ann, Michael Wallace Gordon & Christopher Osakwe (1994) Comparative Legal Traditions St. Paul, Minn.: West Publishing Co. &Litigation 2000: Courts , Judges and Lawyers???

A notary public has functions that in the UK are performed by solicitors or government departments. (A)Can you draw up a list of the main responsibilities of a Romanian notary taking into account the information in Romanian below? (B)On what conditions may a law graduate become a notary public in Romania?

LEGEA NR. 36 DIN 12 MAI 1995 A NOTARILOR PUBLICI ŞI A ACTIVITĂŢII NOTARIALE

Cap. 1 Dispoziţii generale Art. 3 Notarul public este investit să îndeplinească un serviciu de interes public şi are statutul unei funcţii autonome. Art. 4 Actul îndeplinit de notarul public, purtând sigiliul şi semnătura acestuia, este autoritate publică şi are forţa probantă prevăzută de lege. Art. 5 Actele notariale pot fi efectuate şi de misiunile diplomatice şi oficiile consulare ale României, precum şi de alte instituţii în condiţiile şi limitele prevăzute de lege.

Cap. 2 Competenţa notarilor publici

Art. 8 Notarul public îndeplineşte următoarele acte notariale:

a)

redactarea înscrisurilor cu conţinut juridic, la solicitarea părţilor;

b)

autentificarea înscrisurilor redactate de notarul public, de parte personal sau de avocat;

c)

procedura succesorală notarială;

d)

certificarea unor fapte, în cazurile prevăzute de lege;

e)

legalizarea semnăturilor de pe înscrisuri, a specimenelor de semnătură, precum şi a sigiliilor;

f)

darea de dată certă înscrisurilor prezentate de părţi;

g)

primirea în depozit a înscrisurilor şi a documentelor prezentate de părţi;

h)

actele de protest al cambiilor, al biletelor la ordin şi al cecurilor;

i)

legalizarea copiilor de pe înscrisuri;

j)

efectuarea şi legalizarea traducerilor;

k)

eliberarea de duplicate de pe actele notariale pe care le-a întocmit;

l)

orice alte operaţiuni prevăzute de lege.

(…)

Art. 16 Notar public poate fi cel care îndeplineşte următoarele condiţii:

a) are numai cetăţenia română şi domiciliul în România şi are capacitatea de exerciţiu a drepturilor civile;

b) este licenţiat în drept – ştiinţe juridice – sau doctor în drept;

c) nu are antecedente penale;

d) se bucură de o bună reputaţie;

e) cunoaşte limba română;

f) este apt din punct de vedere medical pentru exercitarea funcţiei;

g) a îndeplinit timp de doi ani funcţia de notar stagiar şi a promovat examenul de notar public sau a exercitat timp de cinci ani funcţia de notar, judecător, procuror, avocat sau o altă funcţie de specialitate juridică şi dovedeşte cunoştinţele necesare funcţiei de notar public.

16

C 3

Notary public/client role-play

A foreign businessman who has been working in Romania for some years has to return urgently to the UK. He has no time to sell his flat therefore, he must give power of attorney to a British colleague who will act on his behalf. One of you is the client and one of you the notary. You have a 15-minute appointment to discuss the situation and collect the necessary data. Use the information on the role cards given to you by your teacher. What kind of questions would the notary public ask the client in order to elicit this information?

Eliciting information

USEFUL PHRASES:

Asking for an expert opinion

How could I be of help to you? What can I do for you? Would you please enlarge upon …? Could you repeat that? Please say that again. Sorry? Pardon? I’m afraid I didn’t (quite) understand/ catch what you said. What exactly do you mean by XXX ? Tell me some more about … Would you care to detail the situation? What has led you to …? I would like you to define/ explain/ describe …

What would you advise me to do? I wonder if you could help me to …? What, in your opinion, would be the ….? Would you like to/be so kind (as) to explain …? How could I …? Where would I find ….? Do you really think I should …? Would you agree that …?

Making polite requests

Can you/will you/ would/could you …?

Would you mind …?

I wonder if you could …?

Do you think you could …?

I wish you would…

I would like you to …

I would appreciate it if you could …

Would you be good enough/so kind (as) to …? You should take into consideration …

You might consider …

17

C.4. Writing.

Now on the basis of your discussion draw up a power of attorney using the information you elicited. Guide yourselves after the following example:

SPECIAL POWER OF ATTORNEY KNOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS that I, ( name) of
SPECIAL POWER OF ATTORNEY
KNOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS that I,
( name)
of
(address) do hereby constitute and appoint my attorney (name and address)
as my Attorney in Fact, to act in my name, place, and stead for the purpose of
signing all documents of every nature, type and kind with regard to the sale of
land and premises located at
(address)
, for he total sale price of
(figures)
, said land and premises being more particularly described as
follows:
(description of the property)
FURTHER, my Attorney,
( name)
, is hereby authorised and
empowered to take such action and to sign and execute any and all instruments
of every nature and kind as may be required in order that the above-described
premises may be sold.
Dated at
(palce)
, this
(figure) day of (months), (year).
In presence of:
(Witness)
(Signature)
State of
,
County
At
(place)
, this
(figure) day of (months), (year).
personally appeared
(name)
who acknowledged the above
instrument, signed and sealed by her, to be her free act and deed.
Notary Public

Section DD D : ROUND-UP

Use this space to record useful language related to the topic of this unit.

e.g. conveyancing document
e.g. conveyancing document

18