Pennsylvania Lobbying Disclosure Law

Lawyers who engage in legislative advocacy should be aware of the passage of the Pennsylvania Lobbying Disclosure Law, P.L. 2006-134 (November 1, 2006, effective January 1, 2007), 65 Pa.C.S. §13A01 et seq. Laura Mohney, staff counsel to the Disciplinary Board, reports, “The Act requires registration and reporting by any person or entity that is paid or pays to influence the actions of the General Assembly and/or the Executive Department. There are certain limited exceptions. For attorneys, the Act applies to activities that in the past have been considered to be the practice of law rather than lobbying. Attorneys will need to review the law to determine whether it is necessary to register as a lobbyist. The deciding issue is whether or not the attorney is carrying out any of the lobbying activities subject to registration under the Act. Attorneys who engage as lobbyists are on notice that they have no claim of lawyer/client privilege in this area. RPC 1.19 covers lawyers acting as lobbyists.

Currently, a committee is working on regulations pertaining to the act. Information regarding the Act and the Committee's activities is available at the Attorney General website and the Department of State.