when cheap is (very) expensive

S. F.

MADRID

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The Spanish Association of Family Lawyers (AEAFA) has expressed today in a meeting with the president of the General Council of Spanish Lawyers (CGAE), Victoria Ortega, your alarm at the risk of misleading advertising in divorce campaigns at 150 euros, cliques or vans labeled with ridiculous prices. “Attending a divorce as a lawyer is not limited to downloading a form from the Internet and filling in the data. Family lawyers must offer complete advice to the client on the pros and cons of signing a document. When this is not the case, families run the risk of suffering serious consequences for their interests and those of their children, and may lose economic rights. For example, if a compensatory pension, compensation for work at home has not been requested in the regulatory agreement or a certain type of child custody has been agreed, then they cannot be modified in another subsequent procedure or it is very complicated ” The president of the AEAFA, María Dolores Lozano, has warned.

The best negotiation possibilities

“Lawyers are the first and most important protection barrier to prevent a regulatory agreement from being harmful to the interests of citizens and their children. The lawyer has to give comprehensive advice with informed consent of what the client’s rights are. The lawyer must take care of the documentation that the client has brought, verify it and study what are his best possibilities of negotiation to obtain what corresponds to him in a contentious procedure, “insists Lozano.

Malpractice: civil liability

“If a lawyer does not do this, the client can sue him for professional malpractice and risks civil liability. This civil liability subsequently affects all other colleagues because the civil liability insurance policies of the bar associations increase substantially when situations of this type occur, “he insisted. “From the AEAFA we are verifying that many clients feel cheated with the advertisements of divorces at 150 euros because, later, this amount shoots up or the legal service is deficient. These recruitment advertisements do not guarantee that this will be the final price, regardless of the procedure.», Stated María Dolores Lozano.

Platforms without a lawyer

Likewise, the treasurer of the AEAFA, Carmen López-Rendo, also warned the General Council of the Legal Profession about the increasing performance of internet platforms that offer legal services, without finally being able to verify the intervention of a lawyer, which would mean a professional intrusion, in addition to a great danger to citizens.

For couples who do not have financial resources, the president of AEAFA recalled that there is the possibility of attending the duty shift and receiving adequate professional care and with all the guarantees. AEAFA appreciated the predisposition of the president of the General Council of the Bar (CGAE), Victoria Ortega, who reported on the measures that the institution is taking in the face of these advertising campaigns that denigrate the profession.

Under the protection of the Law of Unfair Competition, the CGAE is developing a code to regulate advertising to meet the dignity of the profession. This code, of voluntary adherence (it is awarded with a quality mark), will have a conflict resolution body, reported Victoria Ortega.

The president of the CGAE recalled the difficulties of prosecuting and sanctioning these practices based on price due to the restrictions imposed by the National Commission of Markets and Competition (CNMC). For her part, the AEAFA member María José Sánchez asked the CGAE to convey to all the Spanish bar associations a uniform criterion “to dignify the profession, as has been done with the official shift.”

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