Bar Council of India through press release dated 19-3-2023 clarified that the foreign lawyers/ law firms in India will be restricted to advise clients on foreign laws and international laws.
To avoid any scope for misapprehension or misinformation regarding the entry of foreign lawyers and law firms in India, the Bar Council of India (BCI) has come up with the clarification:
“True Facts about BCI’s Rules regarding Entry, Rules and Regulations of Foreign Lawyers and Law Firms in India”.
The press release issued by Bar Council of India contains the following information:
Allowing foreign lawyers and law firms to advise their clients only regarding foreign laws and international laws.
To render advisory work about those laws only for their foreign clients.
To function in non-litigation areas only.
Not allowing foreign lawyers and law firms to appear in any Court, Tribunal, Board, Statutory or Regulatory Authority or any forum legally entitled for taking evidence on oath or having trappings of a Court.
Entry of foreign lawyers only on reciprocal basis (Permitting lawyers of countries where Indian lawyers are also permitted to practice). Reciprocity is the very esence of the BCI Rules.
Foreign lawyers to appear for clients in International Commercial Arbitration.
BCI rules allowing foreign lawyers and law firms not to be misconstrued to allow any non-lawyers or BPO, etc. To come to India and start practicing in any sphere if it amounts to practice of law as held in Bar Council of India v. A.K. Balaji, (2018) 5 SCC 379.
BCI press release also referred to the decision in Bar Council of India v. A.K. Balaji, (2018) 5 SCC 379 wherein, the Supreme Court desired the BCI or Government of India to frame rules allowing and regulating the entry of foreign lawyers and law firms in India in a restricted sphere not impacting the advocates in India. Thus, the BCI followed the directions of Supreme Court committing to the protection and safeguard the welfare of Advocates in India and requested the Advocate’s fraternity to welcome these rules.
Also Read – BCI allows foreign lawyers and law firms in India
Bar Council of India opens the doors for Foreign Lawyers and Foreign Law Firms in India