February 25, 2014
Legal Brief Assignment No. 2
Dan is a trained paralegal who works for Erie Bank in Lakewood, Ohio. One day, Mary walks into the bank to apply for a mortgage loan to purchase a new house. She and Dan have a long conversation about Mary taking out a mortgage. Mary is concerned that were she to default on her loan, her credit would be destroyed. In response, Dan tells her:
Don’t worry about it. If you don’t pay your loan, the only remedy the bank has is to foreclose on the house. The bank cannot go after you personally and your credit score will be unaffected. I’ve been dealing with this issue for years and I’m telling you that this is the Ohio law on the matter.
Unfortunately, it turns out
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The Ohio State Bar Association, charged respondents, Terry and Eva Martin, their corporation (TELLR Corporation), their business (We The People of Cincinnati), their current franchisor (We The People USA, Inc.), and their former franchisor (IDLD, Inc.), with engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. The Bar alleged that respondents had advised individuals in regard to completing legal pleadings and other documents, provided advice to individuals about their legal rights, and charged fees for these services. In the case of Columbus Bar Assn. v. Purnell, 94 Ohio St.3d 126, 760 N.E.2d 817, (Ohio, 2002). A paralegal, Dellwin Purnell, who, without supervision of an attorney, advised and represented a minor claimant in a personal injury matter in the probate court, was engaged in “unauthorized practice of law.” Loc.R. 75.8(A)(2) of the Probate Division of the Common Pleas Court of Franklin County requires that an independent paralegal “shall be registered for each case in which the independent paralegal is performing services,” identifying, inter alia, a supervising attorney. That attorney must sign the registration, certifying that the independent paralegal is qualified to perform the services and that the supervising attorney will supervise and be responsible for all services of the