The revocation of lawyer monopoly will oversaturate the legal services market, but will not improve their quality, Head of Omerta Organized Law Group Yevhen Fedoseyev has said.
“The legal market will become even more oversaturated. The activities of a lawyer require adherence to high standards and rules of ethical conduct, which in turn eliminates unethical behavior in the process, which can be observed when a person acting under a power of attorney may abuse procedural rights, disrupt court hearings, and in some cases puts pressure on justice and he is not afraid of disciplinary action,” he said.
The lawyer said that one of the duties of a lawyer is to constantly improve his professional level. At the same time, he said that as a result of the abolition of the lawyer monopoly, “justice will open its doors to a wider circle of people who, due to their financial situation, could not turn to lawyers, but no one has canceled the fact that any lawyer will also not perform work for free.”
“An appeal to a layman who does not know the intricacies of accompanying cases will ultimately cost a lot more,” the lawyer said.
According to Fedoseyev, the introduction of the exclusive right of lawyers to represent interests in court or the so-called lawyer monopoly is an important step for a democratic state, which seeks to effectively and professionally protect the rights and interests of its citizens. In Ukraine, the lawyer monopoly was introduced in 2016 on the basis of a bill amending the Constitution of Ukraine.
“The lawyer monopoly has been building in our country for a long time. Previously, the need for a more professional approach to representation and defense in the courts was not an urgent issue. However, over time and the development of a democratic state, professional and, most importantly, effective defense and representation in courts have become a necessity, since many cases were reviewed only on the basis of the procedural errors in the documents,” he said.
Fedoseyev said that a lawyer is a person who is professionally involved in the defense and representation of citizens in courts, during investigative actions, and similar actions. “Imagine that it’s not doctors, but ordinary amateurs who will treat people. Or someone who wants to entrust a heavy operation to a person who is not a professional in this field? Perhaps this is a rhetorical question,” he said.
The lawyer also suggested that lawyers in criminal cases, who will be affiliated with inexperienced lawyers with whom the participants in the criminal process continue to communicate, may suffer from the abolition of the lawyer monopoly.
“Such “lawyers” in criminal cases will be incompetent to advise parties to criminal proceedings, prepare procedural documents on their behalf and the like. The Institute of Civil Lawyers will also lose a lot, because often only an experienced lawyer can observe ethical standards in civil proceedings, prevent conflicts of interest and “wimping out” of the opponent’s position,” Fedoseyev said.