Alabama Rule 5.4 Professional Independence of a Lawyer
(a) A lawyer or law firm shall not share legal fees with a nonlawyer, except that:
(1) an agreement by a lawyer with the lawyer's firm, partner, or associate may provide for the payment of money, over a reasonable period of time after the lawyer's death, to the lawyer's estate or to one or more specified persons;
(2) a lawyer who undertakes to complete unfinished legal business of a deceased lawyer may pay to the estate of the deceased lawyer that proportion of the total compensation which fairly represents the services rendered by the deceased lawyer; and
(3) a lawyer or law firm may include nonlawyer employees in a compensation or retirement plan, even though the plan is based in whole or in part on a profit-sharing arrangement.
(b) A lawyer shall not form a partnership with a nonlawyer if any of the activities of the partnership consist of the practice of law.
(c) A lawyer shall not permit a person who recommends, employs, or pays the lawyer to render legal services for another to direct or regulate the lawyer's professional judgment in rendering such legal services.
(d) A lawyer shall not practice with or in the form of a professional corporation or association authorized to practice law for a profit, if:
(1) a nonlawyer owns any interest therein, except that a fiduciary representative of the estate of a lawyer may hold the stock or interest of the lawyer for a reasonable time during administration;
(2) a nonlawyer is a corporate director or officer thereof; or
(3) a nonlawyer
has the right to direct or control the professional judgment of a lawyer.
Alabama Code 1975, § 10-4-380, et seq.
(Supp.1986), allows the formation of professional corporations (P.C.) in
Alabama. Alabama Code 1975, § 10-4-
390(a) (Supp.1986), provides that "[e]very individual who renders professional
services as an employee of a ... professional corporation shall be liable for
any negligent or wrongful act or omission in which he personally participates to
the same extent as if he rendered such services as a sole practitioner."
Paragraph (b) is substantially identical to DR 3-103(A).
Paragraph (c) is substantially identical to DR 5-107(B).
Paragraph (d) is similar to DR 3-103(C).
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