Advisory Opinion: 1535

Year Issued: 1993

RPC(s): RPC 7.2(c)

Subject: Solicitation; referral; restaurant gift certificates constitute giving something of value

The Committee reviewed your inquiry concerning the giving of [$25] restaurant gift certificates to real estate agents after they had referred real estate closings to the lawyer. The Committee was of the opinion that such conduct would be the giving of something of value for the recommendation of the attorney's services as prohibited by RPC 7.2(c). Similarly, if the lawyer were to give such certificates to either the buyer or seller for designating him as the closing officer, it would violate the same rule. The Committee was of the opinion that the lawyer could give gift certificates to both parties so long as the lawyer was certain that they were not being passed on to the real estate agent for the recommendation.


Advisory Opinions are provided for the education of the Bar and reflect the opinion of the Committee on Professional Ethics (CPE) or its predecessors. Advisory Opinions are provided pursuant to the authorization granted by the Board of Governors, but are not individually approved by the Board and do not reflect the official position of the Bar association. Laws other than the Washington State Rules of Professional Conduct may apply to the inquiry. The Committee's answer does not include or opine about any other applicable law other than the meaning of the Rules of Professional Conduct.