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North Cyprus Law | Advocates DO have a Duty of Care

North Cyprus Law | Advocates DO have a Duty of Care

The old, old chestnut that Advocates have ‘no duty of care’ in north Cyprus is just a myth, furthered by those who are Advocates in the main. It is NOT true. Advocates the world over do have a duty of care. If you can sue them for NEGLIGENCE, then clearly they have a duty of care, and sue them you can, even in north Cyprus.

Anyone taking money for providing a service has an obligation to perform that duty to the very best of their ability, anything less than that is not acceptable. If by not performing this task with ‘due diligence’ they cause you their client financial harm, you have every right to take legal advice and if necessary go to law for redress, It used to be in north Cyprus you would have difficulty in finding another Advocate prepared to take on such a case. The reason being that most have too many skeletons in their cupboards. Not any longer, there are those Advocates who kept their noses clean (the minimum you should expect anyway) who are more than willing take on such a case.

If you approach an Advocate with a particular case that they do not have immediate knowledge of, that is not a bad thing, the law is very wide and diverse and no one can be expected to know everything about the law. What is bad, is if they dismiss you telling you you have no redress without researching the subject. “Ignorance of the law is no excuse” is a well known idiom used often in criminal cases. How much worse then is it if an Advocate, does not know the law and cannot be bothered to find out. An Advocate cannot know everything, but they should at least know where to look and how to research the subject.

Furthermore there is a disciplinary procedure too and if you wish to report your Advocate to the Baro Council, this can be done too. This is the advice given in August 2011.

“Do you want to report your Advocate to the North Cyprus Bar Council?
Saturday, August 27, 2011 – by Name & Address Supplied

If you wish to submit such a complaint, and want our help, please do not hesitate to ask. If you prefer to send your complaint in directly that is fine also, we would ask that you to tell us so that we can progress your complaint for you.

I would like to thank Mr. Feyzi Hansel Secretary General at the Baro Council for providing us with this information.

1. To make a complaint against an advocate is very easy. We don’t have any application form for this aim. But the complainant shall write a letter to the related Local Bar Committee explaining the facts and the complaints. The letter shall contain the complete name and surname of the complainant and his/her full contact references.

2. It is preferable for us if the complaint and/or the letter will be in Turkish. Because the Disciplinary Board Members’ English may not be good enough for understanding the facts and/or complaints. But this is not compulsory.

3. According to Cap 2 Advocates Law, the complaints shall be made to Local Bar Committees. Let me give you the contact references of the Heads of Local Bar Associations:

A. Nicosia Turkish Bar:

Head of the Committee/Bar Mr. Erdaş ERBILEN (English Speaking) (Mobile Number: +905428848808) (E-mail: [email protected])

B. Kyrenia Bar:

Head of the Committee/Bar Mr. Buğra AKTER (English Speaking) (Mobile Number: +905338409944) (E-mail: [email protected])

C. Famagusta Bar:

Head of the Committee/Bar Mr. Ahmet DEMİREL (Mobile Number: +905428652565) (E-mail: [email protected])

D. Güzelyurt Bar:

Head of the Committee/Bar Mrs. Zehra DELİBAŞ (Mobile Number: +905338644784)

4. Procedure, Time Limit and Guarantee: The disciplinary procedure starts with the complaint. Upon a complaint, the Local Bar Committee shall decide whether disciplinary investigation is required or not. If it is decided that an investigation shall be started, Local Bar Committee shall appoint an investigation officer for the matter. The Local Bar Committee, shall complete the procedure as soon as possible, but not exceeding six months from the date of complaint. Within the six-month time period, the Local Bar Committee shall decide whether to send the investigation report to the Bar Council for disciplinary action or rejecting the complaint. If the complaint is rejected, the Local Bar Committee shall inform and/or notify the complainant about the circumstance and/or decision officially. Upon this notification, within a month period, the complainant may make an application to the Bar Council for reviewing of the decision made by The Local Bar Committee. In this condition, the Bar Council shall make a decision within two months. Otherwise the application is deemed to be rejected. If the Bar Council reject the application, it shall inform and/or notify the complainant officially. The complainant may start a litigation against Bar Council before to the High Court of Administration, if the application is rejected and/or deemed to be rejected. If the Local Bar Committee decide to transfer the matter to the Bar Council for disciplinary action, The Bar Council shall, within a month, appoint a prosecutor, prepare the charge sheet and transfer the matter to the Disciplinary Board for disciplinary trial. The disciplinary board shall complete the disciplinary trial and make a decision within six months. Disciplinary Board shall inform and/or notify the complainant from the decision. The complainant may make an application against the decisions of the Disciplinary Board before to the High Court of Administration.

5. According to the Cap. 2 Advocates Law, the decisions of the Disciplinary Board, can only be shared with the Bar Council, Chief Registrar, the related advocate and the complainant. So it’s not a public information.”

Since this was written some of the personnel have changed, but as far as I am aware, the procedure has not.

I was told that should report your Advocate to the Bar Council and the Council find you have a case, then their decision can be used in a Civil case, although probably not in a Criminal case since the presumption of innocence is the cornerstone of justice in criminal cases.

Power to the people

Citizen Smith

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