Pinetown advocate Edward Levin has been removed from the roll of admitted advocates, in terms of a consent order granted in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Monady.

As a condition of the removal, Levin undertook not to practise as an advocate and to not apply to any court in the country for readmission as an advocate or attorney.

In addition, he agreed to pay the costs of the application on the scale as between attorney and client.

The order came after an application for Levin to be struck off the roll of advocates for accepting work directly from the public as opposed to being instructed by an attorney.

Advocates Society chairman Marumo Moerane had said in court papers that Levin’s conduct could only be described as dealing directly with the public, acting in the absence of an attorney and/or performing the work ordinarily performed by an attorney and receiving direct payment of fees and disbursements from the public.

In replying papers, Levin, who practised from Mariannhill Park in Pinetown, said he was not a member of the KZN Society of Advocates and was not subject to its rules.

He accepted that when a matter became litigious, he could not act as an advocate, unless briefed by an attorney.

In those instances the client would be advised to select an attorney who might or might not brief him. He also said his conduct and practise were neither immoral nor fraudulent.

Regarding receiving direct payment of fees from people, Levin said he had claimed payments when he had functioned as a legal adviser.

In instances in which money was to be paid for the benefit of the client, it would be paid to the attorney to be administered through his or her trust account. - The Mercury