Act Amending The Judicial Code In Relation To The Account For Quality Of Lawyers

Original Language Title: Loi modifiant le Code judiciaire en ce qui concerne le compte de qualité des avocats

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21 DECEMBER 2013. - An Act to amend the Judicial Code with respect to the quality account of lawyers



PHILIPPE, King of the Belgians,
To all, present and to come, Hi.
The Chambers adopted and We sanction the following:
Article 1er. This Act regulates a matter referred to in Article 77 of the Constitution.
Art. 2. In the Judicial Code, an article 446quater is inserted as follows:
"Art. 446quater. § 1er. A lawyer distinguishes between his own funds and third-party funds.
Funds received by lawyers in the exercise of their profession for the benefit of clients or third parties are paid on one or more accounts open to their name or on behalf of their lawyer company with reference to their quality or quality. These accounts are opened in accordance with the rules to be fixed by the Order of the French-speaking and German-speaking Bars and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies.
The lawyer manages the funds of customers or third parties through this account. It always asks customers and third parties to pay exclusively on this account.
This account is managed exclusively by the lawyer, without prejudice to the additional rules concerning the handling of funds of customers or third parties established by the French-speaking and German-speaking Bar Association and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies.
§ 2. The accounts referred to in § 1er include third party accounts and rubricated accounts.
The third party account is a global account on which funds are received or managed that must be transferred to customers or third parties.
The rubricized account is an individualized account opened in a specific folder or for a specific client.
§ 3. The third-party account and the rubricized account are accounts that are open to an institution approved by the National Bank of Belgium on the basis of the Act of 22 March 1993 relating to the status and control of credit institutions or to the Caisse des dépôts et consignations and which meet at least the following conditions:
1° the third party account and the rubricized account can never be debited;
2° no credit, in any form, may be made on a third party account or on a rubricized account; they can never serve as a security;
3° any compensation, merger, or stipulation of an account between the third party account, the rubricized account and other bank accounts is excluded; no netting agreement may apply to these accounts.
The Order of French-speaking and German-speaking Bars and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies can set complementary rules regarding the handling of customer or third-party funds.
§ 4. Except in exceptional circumstances, the lawyer shall transfer to the recipient as soon as possible the funds received on his third party account.
If, for substantiated reasons, the lawyer cannot transfer the funds to the recipient within the time limit provided by the Order of the French-speaking and German-speaking Bars and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies and, at the latest, within two months of their receipt, it pays them on a rubricized account.
Without prejudice to the application of mandatory legal rules, paragraph 2 is not applicable where the total of the funds received either on behalf of the same person or on the occasion of the same transaction or on file does not exceed 2.500 euros. The King can adapt this amount every two years, taking into account the economic situation. This adaptation comes into force on 1er January of the year following the publication of the adaptation order.
§ 5. The Order of the French-speaking and German-speaking Bars and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies establish and organize a decisive control regime at least by whom, on what, when and how control is exercised with respect to the provisions of §§ 1er 4. This control regime specifically determines the sanctions and measures that may be taken in the event of an offence. It does not prejudice other legal provisions that provide for control of the funds received on the accounts referred to in § 2.
§ 6. The lawyer shall pay to the Caisse all amounts, regardless of the amount, that have not been claimed by the person entitled or have not been paid to the Fund within two years of the closing of the file in which they were received by the lawyer. The deadline is suspended as long as these amounts are subject to judicial proceedings.
These deposits are registered on behalf of the entitled person designated by the lawyer. The Caisse des dépôts et consignations shall be held at the disposal of the person entitled until the expiry of the period referred to in section 25 of Royal Decree No. 150 of 18 March 1935, which shall coordinate the laws relating to the organization and operation of the Caisse des dépôts et consignations and make amendments thereto under the Act of 31 July 1934. ".
Art. 3. In the same Code, an article 446quinquies is inserted as follows:
"Art. 446quinquies. § 1er. The titles and values of the bearer entrusted to the lawyer on the occasion of a particular file are, within the time limit provided by the regulations of the Order of the French- and German-speaking Bars and the Orde van Vlaamse Balies and, at the latest, within three months, deposited to the owner, under a separate section open to an institution approved by the National Bank of Belgium on the basis of the law of 22 March 1993
§ 2. They were handed over to the Caisse deposits and consignations by the lawyer in accordance with section 5 of the ministerial order of 27 March 1935 of the execution of Royal Decree No. 150 of 18 March 1935 co-ordinating the laws relating to the organization and operation of the Caisse des dépôts et consignations and bringing amendments under the law of 31 July 1934, all the titles and values of the holder which are not
These deposits are registered on behalf of the entitled person designated by the lawyer. Without prejudice to Article 4, paragraph 1er, of the Act of 14 December 2005 deleting titles to the holder, the Caisse des dépôts et consignations shall make such deposits available to the holder until the expiry of the period provided for in article 26 of Royal Decree No. 150 of 18 March 1935 referred to in paragraph 1er".
Art. 4. This Act comes into force on the day of entry into force of the Act of 22 November 2013 amending the Act of 25 ventôse an XI containing organisation of the notariat with respect to the quality account of notaries and the mortgage law of 16 December 1851 with respect to the quality account of lawyers, notaries and judicial officers
Promulgate this law, order that it be clothed with the seal of the State and published by the Belgian Monitor.
Given in Brussels on 21 December 2013.
PHILIPPE
By the King:
The Minister of Justice,
Ms. A. TURTELBOOM
Seal of the state seal:
The Minister of Justice,
Ms. A. TURTELBOOM
____
Note
House of Representatives.
Documents: 53-3059. - Full report: 8-10 October 2013.
Senate.
Documents: 5-2288. - Annales of the Senate: December 5, 2013.
See also:
House of Representatives.
Documents: 53-1661. - Full report: 8-10 October 2013.
Senate.
Documents: 5-2287.