The purpose of this article is to discuss the role of ethics and unauthorized practice opinions in regulating the practice of law, with suggestions for clarification and improvement.

The Kentucky Bench and Bar, the quarterly journal of the Kentucky Bar Association ("KBA"), prints "Advisory Ethics Opinions" and "Unauthorized Practice Opinions" over the signatures of the respective chairs of the Ethics and Unauthorized Practice of Law ("UPL") Committees. This article describes: 1) how ethics and unauthorized practice opinions are generated; 2) the legal effect of the opinions; 3) the relationship of ethics opinions to attorney discipline; 4) the Board of Bar Governors' role in shaping the opinions; and 5) the role of the Kentucky Supreme Court. The article concludes by suggesting that the Kentucky Supreme Court appoint the members of the Ethics and UPL Committees and that the court have the power to review opinions on the court's own motion.

Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 1998

Notes/Citation Information

Northern Kentucky Law Review, Vol. 25, No. 2 (Winter 1998), pp. 309-332