Faculty Author Type

In Memoriam [W. Wesley Pue]

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date



legal profession; professionalism; law and society; professional ethics; regulation; lawyers in colonial contexts


Periodic crises around the conduct of lawyers provoke moves in the direction of constituting the organized legal profession as a regulated industry, much like any other. Such proposals, whether for regulation through Legal Services Commissions or other structures, abruptly confront the historically embedded constitutional notion that liberty itself rests on the independence of the bar. This paper engages in a comparative review of the notion of an independent legal profession. Its particular focus is on widely agreed international standards and on the experience of Commonwealth countries and especially Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The paper draws on literatures from around the world including Hong Kong, Uganda, Liberia, Zimbabwe, India, Thailand and Sri Lanka.


Published in Law Society of Upper Canada, Task Force on the Rule of Law and the Independence of the Bar, In the Public Interest: The Report and Research Papers of the Law Society's Task Force on the Rule of Law and the Independence of the Bar (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2007).



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