Massachusetts Bar's Top Lawyer Speaks Out About Elizabeth Warren's 'Law licence Problem'

Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Warren

Photo: AP

Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren was assailed in the right-wing blogosphere Monday for practicing law in Massachusetts without a licence.But Conservatives may have gotten worked up over a non-issue.

The general counsel for the state’s regulatory body for lawyers told Massachusetts Lawyer Weekly he doesn’t think Warren broke any rules by taking cases sometimes while working as a full-time Harvard professor.

Law professors might break the rules if they “actually practice” in Massachusetts without a licence or have an office there, Massachusetts Board of Overseers GC Michael Fredrickson told Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

In particular, part-time professors who take on significant legal work might need to get licensed in the state.

“But being a professor at one of the large schools, their office is a professor’s office, and the fact that they tend to dabble in the practice of law doesn’t run afoul of our rule,” Fredrickson said.

Fredrickson said he didn’t think Warren would need to register in the state.

Massachusetts’ rules for lawyers require any lawyer “engaging in” the practice of law to register with the Board of Overseers and notify that board they’ve been admitted to the state bar.

Apparently, Fredrickson didn’t consider Warren’s “dabbling” to be the same thing as “engaging in” practice of the law.

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