UK President Hires Attorney Not Licensed In Kentucky – This appears to violate Supreme Court Rules and KRS 524.130

The University of Kentucky President has appointed Tennessee Attorney Kim Vance to serve as
Acting General Counsel until a permanent Counsel can be identified.

Ms. Vance is not listed on the KBA Bench & Bar membership as being licensed in Kentucky.
Her VC lists her as being admitted to practice law in Tennessee, but not in Kentucky.
We have no doubt Ms. Vance is a very talented and qualified corporate attorney, but we find no
authorization for her to practice law in Kentucky.

One possible method UK could use to hire the Tennessee attorney is to seek approval through SCR 2.111. This rule was adopted to allow corporations bypass the rules that apply to other attorneys. One still wonders why the President of UK would have to go to Tennessee to hire a lawyer when there are hundred of qualified Kentucky lawyers.

SCR 2.111 Limited certificate of admission to practice law
(1) Every attorney not a member of the Bar of this Commonwealth who performs legal services in this Commonwealth solely for his/her employer, its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities, shall file with the Kentucky Office of Bar Admissions on a form provided, an application for limited certificate of admission to practice law in this Commonwealth. Such application shall be reviewed by the Character and Fitness Committee. If approved, a limited certificate of admission to practice law shall be granted, and shall be effective as of the date such application is approved, provided that the following prerequisites are satisfied.
(a) The applicant must be admitted to practice in the highest court of another state or the District of Columbia, and be a member in good standing at the Bar of such court, or in such state, at the time of filing such application.
(b) The attorney applying for limited certificate of admission to practice law shall sign a sworn statement certifying to the Court that:
(i) He/she has completed the study of law in an accredited law school;
(ii) He/she has been admitted to practice in the highest Court of another state or the District of Columbia;
(iii) He/she is presently in good standing at the Bar of such Court, or such state;
(iv) He/she will perform legal services in this Commonwealth solely for his employer, its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities.
(c) A statement signed by a representative of such applicant’s employer stating that such applicant is an employee for such employer, and performs legal services in this Commonwealth for such employer, its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities, shall be filed with the application.
(2) Such applicant shall pay to the Kentucky Office of Bar Admissions, at the time of submission of such application a fee of one thousand dollars ($1,000) and shall make payment of the current annual dues or fees to the Kentucky Bar Association, as authorized under SCR 3.040.
(3) Upon granting of such limited certificate of admission to practice law, and issuance of said limited certificate by the Clerk of the Supreme Court of Kentucky, such applicant shall be and shall remain, during the period the limited certificate of admission to practice law remains in effect, an active member of the Kentucky Bar Association, subject to all duties and obligations of members admitted under SCR 2.110, SCR 2.120 and SCR 3.661.
(4) The only restrictions and limitations applicable to such membership in the Kentucky Bar Association and to such attorney’s right to practice in this Commonwealth shall be:
(a) Such attorney shall perform legal services in this Commonwealth solely for his employer, its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities, and shall not provide legal services in this Commonwealth, to any other individual or entity.
(b) Such attorney shall not appear as attorney of record for his employer, its parent, subsidiary or affiliated entities, in any case or matter pending before the Courts of this Commonwealth, without first engaging a member of the Association, admitted under SCR 2.120 or SCR 2.110, as co-counsel, whose presence shall be necessary, when required by the Court, at all trials or other times specified by the Court. Nothing herein shall prevent such attorney from appearing on his/her own behalf or representing himself/herself in any case or matter to which he/she is a party, or appearing in the Small Claims Division of the District Court as otherwise provided in Rule 3.020.
(5) The performance of legal services in this Commonwealth solely for such attorney’s employer, its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities, following admission to the Kentucky Bar on a limited certificate shall be considered to be the active engagement in the practice of law for all purposes.
(6) The limited certificate of admission to practice law in this Commonwealth shall expire if such attorney is granted a certificate of admission to practice, or is admitted to the Bar of this Commonwealth under any other rule of this Court, or if such attorney ceases to be an employee for the employer or its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities, listed on such attorney’s application, whichever shall first occur; provided, however, that if such attorney, within thirty (30) days of ceasing to be an employee for the employer or its parent, subsidiary, or affiliated entities listed on such attorney’s application, becomes employed by another employer for which such attorney shall solely perform legal services, such attorney may maintain his admission under this Rule by promptly filing with the Clerk of the Supreme Court a statement to such effect, stating the date on which his prior employment ceased and his new employment commenced, identifying his new employer and reaffirming that he shall not provide legal services, in this Commonwealth, to any other individual or entity. In the event that the employment of an attorney admitted under this rule shall cease with no subsequent employment by a successor employer within thirty (30) days, such attorney shall promptly file with the Clerk of the Supreme Court a statement to such effect, stating the date that such employment ceased.
(7) Except as specifically limited herein, the rules, rights and privileges governing the practice of law shall be applicable to an attorney admitted under this Rule
HISTORY: Amended by Order 2009-12, eff. 1-1-2010; prior amendments eff. 1-1-04 (Order 2003-
4), 1-1-02 (Order 2001-2), 2-1-00 (Order 99-1), 8-1-92 (Order 92-1), 1-13-86; adopted eff. 7-5-85

This is an issue due to the strict attitude the KBA and Bar Counsel’s Office have regarding to the
Unauthorized Practice of Law. Perhaps there are plans for Ms. Vance to become licensed in
Kentucky, but until that happens, we believe this is an issue that should not be overlooked.
LawReader interperts Ky. Practice rules to prohibit a lawyer not licensed in Kentucky to practice law in Kentucky, and giving legal advice to the President of the Univ. of Kentucky is clearly defined as the practice of law.
Countrywide Home Loans v. Kentucky Bar, 113 S.W.3d 105 (Ky., 2003)
August 21, 2003
Our Supreme Court rules define the practice of law as “any service rendered involving legal knowledge or legal advice, whether of representation, counsel or advocacy in or out of court rendered in respect to the rights, duties, obligations, liabilities, or business relations of one requiring the services.” The General Assembly has criminalized the unauthorized practice of law, 12 and our disciplinary rules prohibit attorneys from “[a]ssist[ing] a person who is not a member of…
Unauthorized Practice of Law
Only licensed attorneys may practice law in Kentucky. The practice is regulated exclusively by the court. The compelling reason for such regulation is to protect the public against rendition of legal services by unqualified persons. Kentucky Rule of Professional Conduct (RPC) 5.5. The practice of law is defined by SCR 3.020 as any service: “involving legal knowledge or legal advice, whether of representation, counsel or advocacy in or out of court, rendered in respect to the rights, duties, obligations, liabilities, or business relations of one requiring the services.”
The “unauthorized” practice of law is the performance by those services contained in the definition by “non-lawyers” for “others.”
SCR 3.020.
KRS 524.130:
(1) Except as provided in KRS 341.470 and subsection (2) of this section, a person is guilty of unlawful practice of law when, without a license issued by the Supreme Court, he engages in the practice of law, as defined by rule of the Supreme Court.
(2) A licensed nonresident attorney in good standing, although not licensed in Kentucky, is not guilty of unlawful practice if, in accordance with rules adopted by the Supreme Court, he practices law under specific authorization of a court.
(3) Unlawful practice of law is a Class B misdemeanor.

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