A Lawyer/Librarian’s Efforts to Avoid the Unauthorized Practice of Law

James Stephen Parks


As a new law librarian in an academic law library setting, I am faced with many types of reference questions during the times I sit at the reference desk. Serving law students, attorneys, and pro se patrons, I have to constantly guard myself in how I answer these reference questions. Dealing with legal related questions, I have to be sure I do not violate the prohibition against the unauthorized practice of law while at the same time doing my best at fulfilling my duty to help the library patron as best I can. This essay covers my experiences dealing with reference interactions with all three groups.

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