A Standards Committee concluded that a lawyer certified and signed a notice of claim instrument in circumstances where one of the certifications was not true and correct. It determined that was unsatisfactory conduct. The Standards Committee ordered the lawyer to pay a fine of $4,000 and costs of $1,000.
The lawyer, as a Conveyancing Professional, had certified and signed a notice of claim under the Property (Relationships) Act 1976. After considering a complaint about the lawyer’s conduct in that regard, the Standards Committee’s view was that the lawyer had failed to carefully review documentation before certifying and signing the instrument, resulting in a certification not being true and correct. The Standards Committee concluded that the lawyer therefore provided a false certificate in breach of r 2.5 of the Conduct and Client Care Rules.
The Standards Committee noted that public confidence in both the register of land and the legal profession risk being eroded where e-dealing certifications are provided hastily and without due care.
The Standards Committee determined that the lawyer’s conduct was unsatisfactory in terms of s 12 of the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006. For that finding together with another finding not included in this summary, the Committee ordered the lawyer to pay a fine of $4,000 and costs of $1,000.