“This is fundamentally a question of providing the most opportunities for pro bono service”
WASHINGTON (July 31, 2019) — The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), a global legal association representing more than 45,000 members in 85 countries, has expressed its support of proposed Admission and Discipline Rule 6.2 of the Indiana Rules of Court. The proposed rule would allow in-house counsel practicing on a business counsel license to participate in pro bono legal services.
In its comments to the Indiana Supreme Court Rules Committee, ACC noted that it supports the proposed rule, but argued that the language needlessly restricts the types of pro bono projects that business counsel license holders can provide because it requires partnering with a pro bono or legal services organization. A 2016 survey by the Pro Bono Institute found that law firms, not legal services providers, are corporate legal departments’ most common pro bono partner.
Moreover, many companies have existing, fruitful relationships with community service organizations that stand to benefit from the legal assistance that in-house counsel can provide. ACC’s letter refers to Eli Lilly’s legal department, whose “Wills for Heroes” clinic drafts wills for Indiana’s first responders. The program operates through a partnership with area law firms.
“This is fundamentally a question of providing the most opportunities for pro bono service,” said Mary Blatch, senior director of advocacy at ACC. “We appreciate the proposal to allow in-house lawyers with business counsel licenses to provide pro bono and encourage the Court to go further by removing the requirement in Rule 6.2, Section 1(b), that pro bono services must be provided by a legal service or pro bono organization.”
To read ACC’s comments, visit https://www2.acc.com/advocacy/upload/ACC-Comments-Indiana-Rule-6-2-Pro-….
About ACC: The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is a global legal association that promotes the common professional and business interests of in-house counsel who work for corporations, associations and other organizations through information, education, networking, and advocacy. With more than 45,000 members in 85 countries employed by over 10,000 organizations, ACC connects its members to the people and resources necessary for both personal and professional growth. By in-house counsel, for in-house counsel.® For more information, visit www.acc.com and follow ACC on Twitter: @ACCinhouse.