(Question X, Legal and Judicial Ethics, 2017 Bar Exam)
Atty. Anna Kirmet was one of Worry Bank’s valued clients. The bank gave her a credit card with a credit limit of ₱250,000.00. Because of her extravagance, Atty. Kirmet exceeded her credit limit and refused to pay the monthly charges as they fell due.
Hence, aside from a collection case, Worry Bank filed a disbarment case against Atty. Kirmet. In her comment on the disbarment complaint, Atty. Kirmet insisted that she did not violate the Code of Professional Responsibility because her obligation to the bank was personal in nature and had no relation to her being a lawyer.
Is Atty. Kirmet correct? Explain your answer briefly. (4%)
Under the Code of Professional Responsibility, a lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on his fitness to practice law, nor shall he whether in public or private life, behave in a scandalous manner to the discredit of the legal profession. Under jurisprudence, a lawyer may be disciplined or suspended for any misconduct, whether in his professional or private capacity. Rule
In the case at bar, Atty. Kirmet’s inability to pay adversely reflects on his fitness to practice law, even if this concerns his private life. She may be disciplined for misconduct regardless of whether it is in a private capacity. Apply
Thus, Atty. Kirmet is not correct. Conclusion
(Notice: The suggested answers simulate those that a bar examinee may provide, and thus specific citations are not provided. Notwithstanding, in the reviewers, the bar exam question is answered under the appropriate topic which discusses the concepts and principles, as well as provide for specific citations. Accordingly, please refer to it on the reviewer or in the Library.)
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