Defense and representation in professional law
Advice and representation/defense of members of liberal professions with reference to professional law; criminal defense
The lawyers of our law firm focused on criminal law defend victims of liberal professions, such as.
- lawyers and notaries
- Tax consultants
- Architects and engineers etc.
not only in the run-up to a (threatened) or already started criminal proceedings, but - for very good reasons - even before and also in professional law.
From many years of experience as criminal defense lawyers, we know firsthand that the professional law must be included in the strategic considerations in any case, especially in the foresighted defense and comprehensive preliminary advice in the context of criminal defense.
The reason for this is simple: If a member of the liberal professions is accused of a criminal offense (or is threatened with such an accusation), the professional - in addition to criminal proceedings - can suffer quite considerable disadvantages from additional professional proceedings. In the worst case, these can be existentially destructive, such as the withdrawal of the license to practice law, the admission to the bar, etc. Our attorneys have successfully advised and represented numerous professionals and members of the liberal professions in the run-up to or during such criminal proceedings and in professional proceedings. We know what is important.
The following is important for basic understanding:
Members of the liberal professions, in particular lawyers, notaries, tax advisors and auditors, but also doctors and dentists, architects and pharmacists, are subject to the special rules of their own professional law. In addition to the access to the profession, the professional law regulates in particular the exercise of the respective liberal professions.
The regulations of the professional law can be found, for example, in
- the Federal Lawyers' Act (BRAO),
- the Federal Code of Notaries (BNotO),
- the Tax Consultancy Act (StBerG),
- the Wirtschaftsprüferordnung (WPO) as well as
- the (model) professional code of the Federal Medical Association in the respective design by the medical associations of the federal states.
In this context, professional law lies at the interface between the self-administration claim of the (professional) chambers and the state control of the liberal professions.
Minor violations of professional law are dealt with by the bodies of the chambers themselves and, if necessary, punished. In more serious cases, violations of professional law are decided before the ordinary courts. Special panels, some of which are staffed by members of the profession, are responsible for these cases. A special feature is found with regard to the legal profession - here there are separate lawyers' courts at the respective chambers before which decisions are made in non-public hearings, insofar as no application is made by the person concerned to make the proceedings public (Section 135 (1) BRAO).
The catalog of measures in the event of violations of the professional codes of conduct ranges, in somewhat modified form, from (reprimands) warnings or reprimands to fines to exclusion from the respective profession as ultima ratio.
The procedural regulations are partly laid down in the professional law itself and partly regulated by means of references to the Judicial Constitution Act and the Code of Criminal Procedure (see, for example, Section 116 BRAO). Thus, even in professional law, there is regularly the possibility to terminate proceedings against payment of a fine pursuant to Section 153a of the Code of Criminal Procedure (StPO).
Insofar as criminal proceedings are being conducted in the same matter, it is often the case that the professional proceedings are initially suspended. However, it is imperative to keep an eye on the consequences under professional law already during the criminal proceedings.
As a rule, the professional proceedings represent a considerable burden for the person concerned, both in personal and economic terms. The proceedings often endanger the professional and thus also the economic existence of the person concerned. In addition to the consequences under professional law, claims for damages by clients or patients may also be threatened.
In the case of professional law problems, legal advice should therefore be sought at an early stage, even if criminal proceedings are not (yet) imminent. We will gladly be at your disposal as competent contact persons in order to achieve a quick and positive outcome of the proceedings.