New York Judiciary Law 470 requires that a nonresident attorney maintain an "office for the transaction of law business" within the state of New York. An open question is what is necessary to meet the law's requirements for nonresidents to practice law in NY. In the recent case of Schoenefeld v. Schneiderman (view here and here, both US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the New York State Court of Appeals (via a certified question from the Second Circuit), took up this issue. For your convenience, we have provided links to these decisions.
Pursuant to New York Judiciary Law Section 470: "A person, regularly admitted to practice as an attorney and counsellor, in the courts of record of this state, whose office for the transaction of law business is within the state, may practice as such attorney or counsellor, although he resides in an adjoining state."
This statute has recently been interpreted by the New York State Court of Appeals as "requiring nonresident attorneys to maintain a physical law office within the State." Additionally, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld this requirement as constitutional and The Supreme Court of the United States denied cert.. (No. 16-780)
Ambiguity remains in the minds of many in the legal community as to the precise requirements, but it is clear a physical office space in some form in NY is necessary for nonresidents attorneys. We believe, in good faith, the facilities and services we are providing satisfy the mandate of Judiciary Law 470, however, in the end that is a decision you must make as an attorney practicing law in NY.
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