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REPUBLIC ACT NO.

9999

AN ACT PROVIDING A MECHANISM FOR FREE LEGAL


ASSISTANCE AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

"FREE LEGAL ASSISTANCE ACT OF 2010"


Declaration of Policy

to value the dignity of every human person and guarantee the rights of
every individual, particularly those who cannot afford the services of legal
counsel.
to promote a just and dynamic social order that will ensure the prosperity
and independence of the nation and free the people from poverty
through policies and programs that provide adequate social services and
improve the quality of life for all.
the State shall guarantee free legal assistance to the poor and ensure that
every person who cannot afford the services of a counsel is provided with
a competent and independent counsel preferably of his/her own choice,
if upon determination it appears that the party cannot afford the services
of a counsel, and that services of a counsel are necessary to secure the
ends of justice and protect of the party.
What are the purposes of R.A. No.
9999?

To encourage lawyers and professional partnerships to provide free


legal assistance
To solicit the assistance of lawyers and professional partnerships in
the private practice of law in providing quality legal assistance to
indigent litigants through a system of tax incentives
To provide relief to the Public Attorneys Office (PAO) and other
associations accredited by the Supreme Court from the numerous
cases it handles
To provide indigent litigants the opportunity to acquire the services
of the distinguished law firms and legal practitioners of the country
for free
What are the purposes of R.A. No.
9999?

To ensure that the right of every individual to counsel as mandated


in the Constitution is protected and observed
Section 11 of Article 3 of the Philippine Constitution provides that, Free
access to the courts and adequate legal assistance shall not be
denied to any person by reason of poverty.
Definition of legal services

the term legal services to be performed by a lawyer refers to any


activity which requires the application of law, legal procedure,
knowledge, training and experiences which shall include, among
others, legal advice and counsel, and the preparation of
instruments and contracts, including appearance before the
administrative and quasi-judicial offices, bodies and tribunals
handling cases in court, and other similar services as may be
defined by the Supreme Court. (Sec. 3, R.A. 9999)
How are the services availed of?

PAO, Department of Justice (DOJ) and other legal aid clinics accredited
by the Supreme Court shall refer pauper litigants to identified lawyers and
professional partnerships
PAO, DOJ and other legal aid clinics shall issue a certification that services
were rendered by the lawyer or the professional partnership under this act.
The certification shall include the cost of the actual services given.
What are the incentives given to lawyers
rendering free legal services?

A lawyer or professional partnerships rendering actual free legal services,


as defined by the Supreme Court, shall be entitled to an allowable
deduction from the gross income, the amount that could have been
collected for the actual free legal services rendered or up to ten percent
(10%) of the gross income derived from the actual performance of the
legal profession, whichever is lower: Provided, That the actual free legal
services herein contemplated shall be exclusive of the minimum sixty (60)-
hour mandatory legal aid services rendered to indigent litigants as
required under the Rule on Mandatory Legal Aid Services for Practicing
Lawyers, under BAR Matter No. 2012, issued by the Supreme Court. (Sec. 5,
R.A. 9999)
What are the salient features of R.A.
No. 9999?

The law will allow indigent litigants to acquire the services of renowned
lawyers and law firms for free
In exchange for the services rendered by the lawyer or the law firm, they
will be given tax incentives equivalent to the cost of the services rendered
to the indigent litigant
It will help relieve the Public Attorneys Office (PAO) of its numerous case
load involving indigent litigants who shall be referred to lawyers or law firms
in the private practice
It should entice renowned and distinguished firms and lawyers in the
practice as their services shall still be compensated commensurately
through the tax incentives
What are the salient features of R.A.
No. 9999?

Note: The DOJ, in cooperation with the Philippine Information Agency


(PIA), is hereby mandated to conduct an annual IEC (Information,
Education and Communication)campaign in order to inform the lawyers
of the procedures and guidelines in availing tax deductions and inform the
general public that a free legal assistance to those who cannot afford
counsel is being provided by the State (Sec. 6, R.A. 9999)