Sunday, July 13, 2014

Legislative Update,7-13-2014= Governor signed HB590 Unauthorized Practice of Law

This Legislative Update has been provided by Nick Norman, Director of Legislative Affairs for the RPOA

Howdee everyone,


I will be doing more coordinating of volunteers for next season soon & we need more volunteers for the legislative effort in general and more core team volunteers.  We only need 15 minutes per week per person during the busy times to make this legislative effort extremely effective.

Please contact Nick at to help out. 

I also am coordinating a Property Rights Friendly and Property Rights Unfriendly legislator list.  We hope this will be helpful as we approach time to vote for a new legislature.  Please also contact me if you have specific factual information to add to the list regarding any specific candidates for election.

Important Updates:Governor has signed HB590which allows an LLC etc, to be represented by a member of an LLC in district court (for evictions and small claims). (You will no longer be required to hire an attorney).

Action items this week:None; Enjoy this gorgeous weather.

Hearings this week:None

Hearings next week:None scheduled so far

Further below is:Bills Updated Status summary:
Full details on all bills above
(Which includes property owner position, contact info, talking points, and more)

Love & Light,
Nick Norman
RPOA Director of Legislative Affairs
We only list the committee reports on the most important bills affecting the real estate business.  If you want to get the committee report on one of the other bills contact me & I will show you how to get them on line.  Its not terribly hard to get but not straight ahead either.
Bills Updated Status summary:
HB590, Unauthorized Practice of Law    
Title: relative to the unauthorized practice of law.
Property Owner Position: For
General Status: Signed by Governor
Full details on all bills above:HB590, Unauthorized Practice of Law
05/22/2014 at 03:00 PM    LOB 208
Title: Title: relative to the unauthorized practice of law.

Summary: Allows a person who is not authorized to practice law but who is a member, or employee of a limited liability company, corporation, or partnership, which has 5 or fewer members, to represent the entity on civil matters (like evictions & small claims) in the circuit court of  New Hampshire.

Property Owner Position: For

Link to Committee Info:

Email to Committee:
Subject: HB590

Link to Bill Text:
Analysis Stated in Bill:

Talking Points:
HB 590 would amend RSA 311, the statute that enables the Supreme Court of the State of New Hampshire to regulate the practice of law within the state.  Under current law, any person may represent him or herself, or be represented by a person of good character.  All citizens are presumed to be of good character unless demonstrated otherwise.  However, no person shall be commonly permitted to practice as an attorney in court unless he or she has been permitted to do so by the court. (Current requirements are graduating from an accredited law school, which generally is a three year program on a full time basis and passing the New Hampshire Bar Exam, unless allowed to practice based upon reciprocity).

Basically, someone of good character can represent another person in court, but may not hold him or herself out as an attorney unless that person has been admitted to practice law in this state.

HB 590 changes the above to clarify that person of good character who is a member or employee of a limited liability company (an LLC), corporation, or partnership which has 5 or fewer members, shall, with the proper written authorization from the organization be authorized to represent the organization in Circuit Court.  However, there needs to be a new authorization for each appearance in court.

The bill, as amended, does not address properties held in a trust or an estate.  Also, a corporation has officers and shareholders and not members as does an LLC. I would think that the Courts would allow a corporation with 5 or fewer shareholders to make use of this bill, but not trusts or estates.

This bill is useful to the all businesses, including landlords, who are organized in LLC's, partnerships or corporations. It avoids the necessity to hire an attorney for evictions, collection suits both in small claims and circuit court level, other cases brought for and against the business person in circuit court. 

Most likely the authorization will have be given by the majority of the members of the LLC or shareholders of the corporation.  The acting or managing partners/members will likely have to give it for the partnership/LLC.

This allows any person of good character to represent the business in court with the proper authorization.  Note however, it does not, however, change any of the evidence required to prove a case. (The employee may not have personal knowledge that a tenant is behind in rent, but may have only been told that by the employer, which is hearsay and not admissible.)

We plan to propose a clarifying amendment to address corporations(not having members), trusts and also family LLC partnerships with more than 5 family members.

Being that different circuit courts presently interpret this situation differently from court to court, the bill would add clarity for circuit court judges.

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