Solicitors Act, 1954

Restriction on drawing documents, etc.

58.—(1) This section applies to the following acts:

(a) the drawing or preparing of a document relating to real or personal estate or any legal proceeding,

(b) the procuring or attempting to procure the execution by an Irish citizen of a document relating to—

(i) real or personal estate, or movable or immovable property, situate or being outside the State and the United Kingdom, or

(ii) any legal proceeding, actual or in contemplation, of which the subject-matter is any such estate or property,

(c) the making of an application, or the lodging of a document for registration, under the Registration of Title Act, 1891, or any Act amending that Act, at the Land Registry or to or with a local registering authority,

(d) the taking of instructions for, or drawing or preparing of, documents on which to found or oppose a grant of probate or letters of administration.

(2) An unqualified person who does an act to which this section applies shall, subject to subsection (3) of this section and without prejudice to any other liability or disability to which he may be subject, be guilty of an offence under this section and be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds.

(3) The following acts shall be excepted from the foregoing provisions of this section—

(a) an act not done either directly or indirectly for or in expectation of any fee, gain or reward,

(b) an act done by a practising barrister,

(c) an act done by any public officer in the course of his duty,

(d) an act done by a duly accredited diplomatic or consular officer of another State in the course of his duty,

(e) an act done by a notary public as such,

(f) an act consisting merely of engrossing a document,

(g) an act done by a person in the employment of a practising barrister or a solicitor qualified to practise and while acting in the course of such employment by the direction and under the supervision of his employer.

(4) In this section, the word “document” includes a document under seal and a document not under seal, but does not include—

(a) a letter or power of attorney exclusively for the sale or transfer of stocks, shares, bonds, debentures or other stock exchange securities,

(b) a transfer of stocks, shares, bonds, debentures or other stock exchange securities containing no trust or limitation thereof,

(c) a purely banking document, or

(d) a purely commercial or mercantile document.