Can residential premises be used for Advocates office?

An advocate discharges professional services. In no way can the services of an advocate be deemed to be termed as commercial, since an advocate renders service, charges fees whereas in a commercial activity there is a practice of business/trade or commerce.

The question whether an advocates office requires registration under the Shops and Establishments Act has been dealt by the Supreme Court in the case of Sasidharan v Peter and Karunakar where the Court held that a lawyers office is not a commercial establishment, hence it need not be registered under the above act. An advocates office is not a business building.

It is therefore pertinent to note that an advocate can operate from his place of residence, however the same is subject to the local laws restrictions. Hence, residential premises can be used as an advocates office subject to restrictions imposed by local laws.

Click here to view judgement