Lawyers with little regard for their client’s interests will soon be prosecuted and will be entitled to pay a salary increase, according to a new law signed by President Donald Trump.
Lawyers with little respect for the interests of their clients, and the ability to make a quick buck at the expense of other legal professionals, will be rewarded, Trump signed into law Friday.
The new law, titled the “Presidential Appointments of Respect to Lawyers Act,” requires lawyers to report on their personal finances and give up any privileges they once enjoyed.
The law also requires attorneys who do not comply with the law to be fired and their clients’ rights to a court-appointed attorney.
The new law also imposes sanctions on attorneys who violate it, including a fine of up to $250,000 and up to three years in prison.
“We will not be intimidated by those who would silence the voice of their conscience and seek to silence our profession, ” Trump said in signing the bill, which was authored by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan.
“We will stand with those who respect our profession and will stand up for our rights.”
The legislation passed the Senate unanimously.
It has yet to be signed by the President, who is expected to sign it.
The legislation requires attorneys to provide annual financial disclosures that include how much they earned, how much their fees and expenses were, and whether they received bonuses, stock options, and other benefits.
They must also disclose their attorney fees, and their compensation packages, and disclose how much time they spend on personal expenses and legal fees.
The American Bar Association also is expected have its own review of the legislation, and it could take several months before a final version of the bill becomes law, said Amy J. Roper, a spokeswoman for the association.
Roper said the law has been vetted by its Office of Professional Responsibility and Ethics, which is charged with enforcing the rules and standards of conduct.
The ethics office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the law.
The move comes just days after a federal appeals court struck down a law that was a key part of the Obama administration’s “bailouts” of the financial industry.
The Obama administration had sought to block the law that would have required banks to report the financials of millions of Americans and bar them from taking a $1.3 trillion bailout from taxpayers.
The appeals court ruling did not address Trump’s veto.
The bill, however, was widely praised by Republicans who say it would strengthen ethics and law enforcement.
In a statement on Friday, the president called the decision “a win for the American people.”
“The president and his administration are putting America first by ensuring that those in law enforcement and in the financial services industry are not paid to break the law and steal from our fellow citizens,” he said.
The White House did not respond to requests for comment.