The Lawyers Oath: Its Significance and Importance
This Essay re-examines the importance of the lawyer’s oath and espouses the belief that the lawyer’s oath is much more than a form of attestation. It is an embodiment of the fundamental principles that guide every member of the Bar and from it springs the lawyer’s duties and responsibilities. In order to fulfill these duties, every lawyer is expected to live by a certain mode of behavior which is not distilled in the Code of Professional Responsibility. The Supreme Court places much importance in these duties and responsibilities as reflected in several cases involving the violation of these duties and responsibilities.
Doctrines in several cases such as Vitriolo v. Dasig, De Guzman v. De Dios, Sevillano Batac, et al. v. Atty. Cruz, Jr., and Vda. De Rosales v. Ramos are briefly discussed in this Essay. Based on the rulings of the Court in these cases, it is apparent the importance placed on legal ethics. With the increasing number of administrative cases filed against lawyers, it is justified that legal ethics is prescribed as a subject matter under the Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE).
Indeed, the lawyer’s oath is not a mere ceremony or a formality for practicing the law. By swearing the lawyer’s oath, new lawyers become guardians of truth and the rule of law as well as instruments of justice. This is necessary in order to ensure that the practice of law remains an honorable profession.