46 terms

PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY - FLORIDA

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SALE OF LAW PRACTICE
Can sell but must meet requirements:
1) Can sell entire practice to one attorney - or
2) Can divide practice areas and sell them to different attorneys.
3) Attorney buyer must be AUTHORIZED to practice law in FL
4) Written notice of the sale must be sent to firm's clients informing them about their rights to retain other counsel.
5) Client presumed to consent if does not object within 30 days of notice.
6) Attorney buyer cannot increase fees.
UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW
1) Lawyers can only practice in state where admitted.
2) Lawyers NOT LICENSED IN FL = Cannot advertise to provide legal services in FL
3) Lawyer NOT ADMITTED IN FL = Cannot establish an office in FL or hold out to the public that is admitted to practice in FL.

EXCEPTIONS:
1) Federal law practice - taxes, immigration, patent
2) Lawyer admitted in another state CAN provide legal services in FL limited to specific areas of federal law.
OUT-OF-STATE ATTORNEY REPRESENTING SUIT IN FL
[Client hiring lawyer in MA to file suit in FL]
An out-of-state lawyer can provide TEMPORARY legal service in FL if:
1) Associated w/FL lawyer who actively participates in case - or
2) Reasonably related to a pending or potential proceeding where lawyer is admitted - or
3) Performed for a client who resides where lawyer is admitted - or
4) Reasonably related to lawyer's practice where lawyer is admitted
PRO HAC VICE
NON-FL Lawyer CAN appear in FL Court if FILES motion w/judge - for only that case
ISSUES:
1) More than 3 appearances within 1 year = presumed general practice of law in FL = not eligible for admission pro hac vice
2) No pro hac vice for inactive, suspended & former FL bar members
3) FL Resident not eligible unless applied for FL admission.
USE OF NON-LAWYERS
Paralegals & Law Clerks -
1) Lawyer CANNOT ASSIST
2) Lawyer MUST SUPERVISE - FL uses "specifically delegated" work [research law vs. handling all]
3) Lawyer CANNOT accept employment by a non-lawyer [individual/group] so that lawyer can supervise him/them
[paralegal group hiring lawyer = no no]
4) Lawyer CANNOT employ a suspended or disbarred lawyer
[Boss - disbarred = associate cannot supervise]
RESTRICTIVE COVENANTS
NOT ALLOWED IN FL
PRO BONO WORK
NOT REQUIRED IN FL - ONLY ASPIRATIONAL

20 hours per year or 350 hour donation
Reporting of pro-bono hrs. required - but don't lie!
FIRM NAMES
NO FALSE, DECEPTIVE, MISLEADING NAMES
[If attorney is not associated - don't use "Smith & Associates"]

TRADE NAMES -
Generally permissible - but:
1) NO deceptive names
2) CANNOT BE CONNECTED TO GOV. agency or public charitable legal services organizations

"LEGAL CLINIC" or "LEGAL SERVICES" - can use only if practice devoted to "reduced rates"

PUBLIC OFFICE ASSOCIATE - cannot use his/her name if not actively/regularly practicing law w/firm

"NONSENSE" NAME - ALLOWED FOR ADVANTAGEOUS POSITION IN TELEPHONE DIRECTORY [to catch attention] - but only if lawyer actually practices under that "nonsense" name
FEES
1) CANNOT be excessive

2) CANNOT be generated in violation of advertising and solicitation rules, or fraud.

3) CANNOT exceed a reasonable amount

4) In setting fee - MUST CONSIDER:
***Amount of time spent on matter
***Time limitation or pressure placed on lawyer by client or circumstances
***Complexity of issues involved
***Amount of $$$ involved
***Lawyer's skill, experience, and reputation
***Geographic area
CONTINGENT FEES
Lawyer is paid % of recovery if client is successful.

REQUIREMENTS:
1) IN WRITING & SIGNED BY CLIENT & EVERY PARTICIPATING LAWYER

2) If fee is non-contingent [flat fee or hourly] - NO WRITING REQ. - unless any portion is non-refundable.

3) METHOD OF CALCULATION must be stated in agreement.
**** % in settlements, trial, or appeal
****If expenses will be deducted before or after % taken.

4) At conclusion of case - CLOSING STATEMENT with calculations & final fee must be provided.

NO CONTINGENCY FEES ALLOWED IN:
***** DOMESTIC RELATIONS CASES
Divorce, alimony, custody, and child support cases.
Contingency fee OK if is to COLLECT POST-JUDGMENT BALANCE OF ALIMONY SUPPORT
[arrears owed]
***** CRIMINAL CASES
PERSONAL INJURY CASES IN FLORIDA
STATEMENT OF CLIENT RIGHTS:
1) Client has right to cancel within 3 days, and owe no fee - but obligated to pay reasonable expenses advanced by lawyer.

2) Statement must disclose:
****Lawyer's experience & education
****Whether lawyer will handle case alone
****Right to a closing statement
****Right to be kept fully informed
****Client's right to make settlement decision

LIMITS ON % RECOVERY PERSONAL INJURY:
1) BEFORE ANSWER
****Up to $1M - 33%
****Bet. $1-$2M - 30%
****Over $2M - 20%
2) AFTER ANSWER
****Up to $1M - 40%
****Bet. $1-$2M - 30%
****Over $2M - 20%
3) IF D ADMITS LIABILITY
****Up to $1M - 33%
****Bet. $1-$2M - 20%
****Over $2M - 15%
4) APPEAL - ADD 5%

MEDICAL MALPRACTICE
Contingency Fee - 30% for first $250K in Damages and 10% of all damages over $250K.
SHARING FEES
1) Sharing fee w/SAME FIRM - OK even if lawyer did not work on case.

2) Sharing fee w/DIF. FIRM - OK if:
***Total fee is REASONABLE and EITHER:
Fee is split based on amount of work - or
Written agreement with client - and
***Each lawyer assumes joint responsibility - and
***Each lawyer is available for consultation
***Basis of fee is disclosed to client
***Lawyer does not need to actually work to get the share of fee.

3) Advertisement must state any intention of lawyer to refer case to another lawyer.

SHARING FEES CAPS:
1) Personal Injury - 75% min. for lawyer w/primary responsibility
2) Waiver allowed w/court permission if equal participation

CANNOT SHARE FEES WITH NON-LAWYERS -
[Biz that provides both legal/non-legal services - not allowed]

NON-LAWYER CANNOT:
1) Invest in legal services business
[cannot have non-lawyer SH]
2) Control professional judgment of lawyer.

KICKBACKS FOR REFERRALS - NOT ALLOWED

BONUSES:
1) CAN be paid to non-lawyer employee for extraordinary effort if not based on generation of business or % of legal fee received
2) CAN share court awarded attorney fees w/non-profit pro bono organization that hired lawyer in that matter.
NON-CLIENT PAYING FEES
Non-clients CAN pay the fees for the lawyer's client - but:
1) Client must CONSENT
2) Non-lawyer must NOT INTERFERE w/Attorney-Client Relationship
3) Attorney cannot disclose confidential matters to non-client

ATTORNEY HIRED BY INSURANCE COMPANY:
If lawyer is paid by Ins. Co. to represent insured - insured must receive Statement of Client Rights informing insured that:
1) Lawyer will follow instructions from Ins. Co.
2) Lawyer can share confidential client info w/insurance co.
3) Insurance policy may give Ins. Co. right to decide whether to settle.
FORMS OF PAYMENT
1) Cash
2) Credit cards [can't charge handling fees]
3) Real property
4) Personal property

ISSUE WITH PAYING W/PROPERTY - ethics - fiduciary duties & obligations triggered -if lawyer has greater knowledge of value of property.

TRANSFER OF MEDIA RIGHTS PRIOR TO CONCLUSION OF CASE NOT ALLOWED
[Offering story as fee]
FIRM EXPENSES CHARGED TO CLIENTS
All expenses must be REASONABLE.
Consider actual expense & prior disclosure to client.
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST - ["COI"]
1) Business deals w/clients are allowed if:
***Deal is FAIR & REASONABLE TO CLIENT
***Deal is IN WRITING
***Client has REASONABLE OPPORTUNITY to get INDEPENDENT COUNSEL - and
***Client CONSENTS IN WRITING

2) Acceptance or solicitation of a substantial GIFT involving legal instrument to a lawyer or lawyer's family - NOT ALLOWED - unless lawyer is RELATED to client.
[lawyers cannot draft a will devising himself a gift that client intends & wants to provide]

If client insists on gift to lawyer - ENTIRE FIRM will be disqualified - cannot draft instrument.
COI - FINANCIAL HELP TO CLIENT
General Rule - NOT ALLOWED

Lawyer cannot pay client's bills & cannot lend money to client.

EXCEPTION - Lawyer CAN pay court costs and litigation expenses in contingency case or if client is indigent.
Pro-bono lawyers can pay filing fees.

Litigation expenses include - DIAGNOSTIC tests but NOT MEDICAL TREATMENT.
COI - LIMITING MALPRACTICE INSURANCE
1) Lawyers CANNOT limit malpractice insurance - unless client is INDEPENDENTLY REPRESENTED BY ANOTHER COUNSEL

2) CAN agree to MANDATORY ARBITRATION of fee disputes - if client is advised IN WRITING to retail independent counsel.

3) CANNOT SETTLE malpractice claims w/client w/o telling client in writing to get independent counsel.

4) Family members CANNOT ACT AS OPPOSING COUNSEL- include: parents, siblings, spouse, children - but CLIENT CAN WAIVE

Entire law firm is not disqualified - only disqualifies actual family member
COI - REPRESENTING MULTIPLE CLIENTS
REPRESENTING 2 CLIENTS IN SAME MATTER - NOT ALLOWED IF:
1) Adverse matters - or
2) Lawyer's rep. of one party creates substantial risk of material limitation of ability to represent the other.
3) Clients CAN WAIVE COI - but only if:
*** Attorney reasonably believes that there will be no adverse effect
*** WAIVER MUST BE IN WRITING

REPRESENTING GROUP OF CLIENTS IN SAME MATTER -
1) CIVIL - ALLOWED
Watch out for AGGREGATE SETTLEMENT OFFER = ALL CLIENTS MUST CONSENT after consultation & disclosure.

2) CRIMINAL - ALLOWED
Watch out for CO-D CONFLICTS
NEW CLIENT SUING FORMER CLIENT
CANNOT REPRESENT NEW CLIENT IF SUING FORMER CLIENT - EVEN IF CASES ARE DIFFERENT

CANNOT USE CONFIDENTIAL INFO AGAINST FORMER CLIENT ON BEHALF OF NEW CLIENT

FORMER CLIENT CAN CONSENT & WAIVE COI.
HIRING FORMER GOV. ATTORNEYS
FORMER GOV. LAWYER CANNOT ENTER PRIVATE PRACTICE & REPRESENT CLIENT IN A CASE THAT GOV. LAWYER WAS PERSONALLY & SUBSTANTIALLY INVOLVED

FORMER GOV. LAWYER CANNOT USE CONFIDENTIAL GOV. INFO.
LAWYER HIRED BY A CORPORATION
CORP. LAWYER'S CLIENT = CORPORATION - NOT ITS DIRECTORS, SH, OFFICERS, OR EMPLOYEES.

Must consider any conflict between corporate and individual - if no conflict - them lawyer can represent both.

Cannot represent if directly adverse.
LAW FIRM DISQUALIFICATION
General Rule - If one lawyer is disqualified b/c of COI - the ENTIRE FIRM is disqualified.

EXCEPTION:
Entire law firm is NOT disqualified if -
1) Family member as opposing counsel created conflict
2) Conflict is a personal interest conflict
3) Newly associated ex-gov. lawyer or ex-judge is SCREENED and does NOT SHARE A FEE.

Conflicts created by NON-LAWYERS in a law firm DO NOT DISQUALIFY ENTIRE FIRM IF NON-LAWYER w/conflict is SCREENED.

If one of the lawyers LEAVES the firm - remaining lawyers who handled confidential info would be disqualified.
CONFIDENTIALITY
General Rule - LAWYER SHALL NOT REVEAL UNLESS CLIENT CONSENTS.

Duty applies even if lawyer is not hired and continues after relationship ends.

MUST/MAY RULES
1) MUST reveal -
***To prevent FUTURE CRIMES
***To prevent DEATH or substantial body injury
***If COURT ORDERED

2) MAY reveal -
***In a lawyer/client controversy
***To establish defense when sued by client
***To detect & resolve COI - typically when changing from one law firm to another - LIMITED DISCLOSURE - [screening purposes]
CONFIDENTIALITY - PROSPECTIVE CLIENTS
Discussions are CONFIDENTIAL - even if not hired.

Lawyer who obtained confidential info from a prospective client CANNOT represent another client in the SAME / SUBSTANTIAL RELATED MATTER

Other lawyers at the firm are NOT disqualified IF lawyer w/confidential info is screened.
CONFIDENTIALITY - IMPLIED AUTHORITY
Lawyers have implied authority to discuss client matters with co-workers in firm [to get job done] and discuss reasonably to carry out the representation - but cannot gossip.
CONFIDENTIALITY - EVIDENCE
POSSESSION OR TOUCHING PHYSICAL EVIDENCE DOES NOT APPLY TO CONFIDENTIALITY

VIEWING EVIDENCE IS CONFIDENTIAL - BUT CANNOT HIDE IT OR REMOVE IT.

IF LAWYER HAS WEAPON - MUST GIVE IT TO THE POLICE.
LITIGATION ISSUES - FRIVOLOUS CLAIMS
General Rule - LAWYER SHALL NOT BRING FRIVOLOUS CLAIMS OR MAKE FRIVOLOUS ARGUMENTS.

Frivolous = brought to harass or w/bad faith

What is not frivolous???
1) Good faith arguments even when lawyer knows he might lose
2) Good faith arguments for reversal
3) Current facts are insufficient - but discovery is upcoming.
LITIGATION ISSUES - DISCLOSING AUTHORITY
Lawyers MUST disclose legal & controlling authority directly adverse to client - not disclosed by opposing counsel.
[Cases & Statutes - not facts]
LITIGATION ISSUES - CLIENT & PERJURY
Perjury Rule - IF LAWYER KNOWS TESTIMONY IS FALSE = CANNOT OFFER IT.

1) If lawyer only has REASONABLE BELIEF that testimony is false = OPTION whether to offer it or not

2) CIVIL CASES -
If client wants to commit perjury - lawyer must:
***Tell client not to do it
***Tell client to correct past testimony
***If client refuses = WITHDRAW
***If withdraw not possible = DISCLOSE TO JUDGE

3) CRIMINAL CASES - follow same approach as civil - except- if court gives SPECIAL PERMISSION to follow NARRATIVE APPROACH = attorney must allow D to take stand and let him say "his version" of the story as a narrative - no q's.
LITIGATION ISSUES - EXPERT & LAY WITNESSES
1) Lawyers cannot induce or provide benefits to witnesses.

2) Can pay hourly/flat fee to EW - but not contingent on result.

3) Can reimburse reasonable expenses for all W's.

4) Can prohibit W to not talk to other side if W is a relative or employee of client - but cannot prohibit other W's not to talk to other side.
LITIGATION ISSUES - LAWYER AS A WITNESS
LAWYERS CANNOT BE ADVOCATE & WITNESS AT THE SAME TRIAL.

EXCEPTIONS - CAN TESTIFY IF:
1) Matter is uncontested
2) Nature of legal services are at issue [fees]
3) Substantial hardship would result to client if lawyer is disqualified.

LAW FIRM DISQUALIFICATION
General Rule - Entire firm is not disqualified if lawyer must testify
EXCEPTION - if lawyer's testimony is against to client's position -
[cannot have one partner c/e his clients]

LAWYERS CANNOT ASSERT PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE OR OPINION AT TRIAL
DESTRUCTION OF EVIDENCE
CANNOT UNLAWFULLY DESTROY docs. that are relevant to pending or reasonably foreseeable proceeding.
LAWYER'S THREATS
UNETHICAL TO THREATEN w/criminal charges or disciplinary proceedings solely to obtain an advantage in civil matters.
LAWYER'S INTERACTION WITH JURORS
Any communications before or during trial - NOT ALLOWED

Communications AFTER trial - LIMITED TO determine whether verdict is subject to legal challenge & must seek COURT'S APPROVAL.
LAWYER'S INTERACTION WITH THE PRESS & MEDIA
CANNOT disclose statements that have a SUBSTANTIAL LIKELIHOOD of materially prejudicing trial.

Telling media inadmissible evidence = prejudicial for D - Juror's can hear it and form a unfair verdict.
MANAGEMENT OF CLIENT'S TRUST ACCOUNTS
1) Lawyer's funds must be kept SEPARATE.
2) Can create one trust fund for all clients.
3) Overdraft protection NOT ALLOWED.
4) Advances for fees & expenses go into client's trust accounts - is not lawyer's $$$ until earned.
5) Must keep records for 6 YRS.
6) Non-refundable fees [Retainer] to guarantee lawyer's availability = lawyer's $$$ - but must be confirmed in writing to client.
7) Only time "commingling" allowed - If bank charges a fee on client's trust acc. - lawyer can put his own $$$ into client's trust acc. to pay bank charge.
WITHDRAWS
MUST/MAY RULES:
1) MUST withdraw if -
***Continued rep. would violate any rule.
***Discharged [fired by client]
***Physical or mental condition req. withdraw.
***Client persists in course of action involving lawyer's services that lawyer reasonably believes is criminal or fraudulent.
***Client has used lawyer's services to commit a crime or fraud.

2) MAY withdraw if:
***Client insists on using lawyer's services to commit criminal or fraudulent acts.
***Client is repugnant or seeks imprudent objectives.
***Lawyer will suffer unreasonable financial burden
***Client insists on action that lawyer fundamentally disagrees with.

IF ORDERED BY COURT TO STAY IN CASE = CANNOT WITHDRAW
SETTLEMENTS
1) CIVIL CASES - CLIENT DECIDES
2) INSURANCE CASES - INS. CO MAY DECIDE
3) CRIMINAL CASES - CLIENT DECIDES WHETHER TO WAIVE JURY, ACCEPT PLEA, OR TESTIFY

LAWYER'S REP. NOT AN ENDORSEMENT OF CLIENT.
DEALING WITH REPRESENTED PARTIES
CANNOT CONTACT A PERSON REPRESENTED BY ANOTHER LAWYER - UNLESS THAT CLIENT'S LAWYER CONSENTS.

CORPORATION REP.
1) Cannot contact persons having managerial responsibility - UNLESS CORP. LAWYER CONSENT

2) Cannot contact current employees who supervise, direct, or regularly consult with the corp. lawyers - or whose acts can be imputed to the corp. - UNLESS CORP. LAWYER CONSENTS

3) CAN CORP. FORMER EMPLOYEES.

Lawyer can speak to a client already represented but seeking second opinion.
DEALING WITH UNREPRESENTED PARTIES
CANNOT ACT AS IF DISINTERESTED -
[Must clearly state that represents opposing party]

CANNOT OFFER LEGAL ADVICE -
[Must only say "Get a Lawyer"]
ADVERTISING
FL Ad Rule applies to ALL forms of communications in ANY PRINT OR ELECTRONIC FORUM - includes seeking legal employment [hiring]

Websites, social networks = same as TV and NEWS ADS

1) WEB/TV ADS
**** FL Ad rules apply ONLY regulate FL BAR MEMBERS - applies to portions of a multi-state firm website that directly relates to legal services provided by a member of the firm who IS a member of the FL BAR or that relates to legal services in FL.

**** N/A TO ADS BROADCASTS IN ANOTHER STATE - even if a member IS from FL Bar - so long as ad is not broadcast in FL or targets FL residents.

2) PAID COMMERCIAL ADS
*** Rule N/A to NATIONAL media ads IF disclaimer "Cases not accepted in FL" is plainly noted in ad.
*** Rules DO apply to lawyers not admitted in FL who TARGET FL RESIDENTS

3) SEEKING EMPLOYMENT IN FL
*** Lawyer need to be admitted in FL
*** Exception - Non-FL Lawyers CAN advertise in FL as part of CLASS ACTION suits pending in another state.

4) LOCAL NEWSPAPER ADS
All ads must include:
*** Name of at least ONE LAWYER or the name of the law firm responsible for the ad content.
*** City, town, or county of ONE or more OFFICE
*** Office location must be BONA FIDE [can state that lawyer is available at satellite office]
*** Disclose if cases are referred to another law firm

5) SUCCESS ADS
*** CANNOT be deceptive or inherently misleading.
*** CANNOT contain material statements that is factually or legally inaccurate
[Over 20 yrs. of experience - in reality 10 lawyers w/2 yrs. of experience each]
*** CANNOT predict or guarantee success or specific results.
*** CANNOT refer to past results - unless verifiable.
*** CANNOT include comparisons to skills, experience, reputation, or record of other lawyers - unless verifiable.
*** CAN include attributes - "honest, trustworthy, aggressive, my goal is..., I strive to..., I am dedicated to...." and areas of practice.

6) TV DRAMATIZATIONS
*** Dramatizations of an actual or fictitious events MUST DISPLAY WORDS "Dramatization. Not an actual event."
*** NO statements of improper tactics allowed -
[1-800-PIT-BULL implied violence]
*** NO Judges, law enforcement, or authoritative figures [recommending or endorsements]
*** Actors must be identified as actors.
*** CANNOT say ad was approved by FL Bar.
*** CANNOT use images, sounds, videos, or dramatizations designed to appeal to EMOTIONS instead of displaying lawyer's suitability to represent prospective client.
*** NO celebrity voices or images - except of local announcer, DJ, or radio personality who regularly records ads - so long as announcer does not endorse or offer a testimonial.
*** NO offerings of economic incentives - but can say "Free Consultations" and "Discounted Fees'
*** Testimonials must be from actual experience, representative of what clients firm generally handle, cannot be written or drafted by lawyer, cannot pay client giving testimony, must include disclaimer that it may not result in same or similar results.
*** Truthful testimonial by past clients re: courtesy & promptness - OK

ILLUSTRATIONS ALLOWED:
Scales of justice; Medications linked to adverse side-effects; X-ray of a damaged lung; Person in jail; Person on crutches; Damaged car; F/C sign on house; Person in front of bills; Gavel; Lady Justice; Statute of Liberty; FL flag; Eagle; Law Books; Courthouse; Columns; Diploma; Lawyer in front of plain background.

ILLUSTRATIONS NOT ALLOWED:
Graphic personal injuries; Crying child; Tricky insurance adjuster

7) ACCOMPLISHMENTS
*** CAN be identified as a Specialist IF CERTIFIED by the FL Bar.
*** If ad includes fee - must be honored for at least 90 days - unless stated otherwise & must disclose whether client is responsible for expenses.

CAN DISPLAY:
Honors - OK - If verifiable
Date of Admission
FL Bar positions
Former employment w/military service
Foreign language ability
Acceptance of credit cards
Common salutary language - "best wishes" and "proudly service our community"

PRE-FILING:
*** Any lawyer who wishes to advertise in FL must file with the FL Bar a copy of the ad at least 20 DAYS PRIOR to publication.
*** If bar does not respond within 15 days - lawyer cannot be disciplined for improper ad.
*** Lawyer can also request advisory opinion for future ads.
*** Pre-filing NOT REQ. for brief announcements that identify the lawyer as the sponsor of a charitable event
SOLICITATION
NOT ALLOWED FOR FINANCIAL GAIN.
EXCEPTION - PUBLIC INTEREST [Pro Bono]

Solicitation includes - In person, mail, tel., fax, e-mail to particular individual - [Texting NOT solicitation - but considered to be an e-mail]
EXCEPTION - CAN SOLICIT:
(1) Family members
(2) Former client

EMAIL RULE -
Subject of e-mail must begin with "Legal Advertisement"

DIRECT/TARGETED MAIL
[Lawyer knows person needs a lawyer]

CANNOT:
1) be sent within 30 days AFTER personal injury or wrongful death.
2) be sent to a person who is already represented - Must include "If you have already a lawyer for this matter, please disregard this letter"
3) involve coercion,duress, false/misleading
4) send a political client whose physical, emotional, or mental state is such that client could not reasonably exercise judgment in employing lawyer
5) reveal legal problem outside envelope
6) resemble legal pleadings
7) be sent to DV respondents if he/she has not been served w/injunction

MUST INCLUDE:
1) word "Advertisement" in contrasting print on outside of envelope and every page
2) a statement of lawyer's qualifications & experience
3) how lawyer learned problem
4) whether the matter will be referred to another law firm
5) retainer agreement marked "SAMPLE" in RED ink - "Do not sign" must appear on signature line.

RULES N/A TO COMMUNICATIONS BETWEEN LAWYERS WITH CURRENT, FORMER CLIENTS, OR FAMILY MEMBERS.
LAW FIRM COMPLIANCE
PARTNER HAS OBLIGATION TO ASSURE THAT LAW FIRM COMPLIES WITH RULES
[must always do conflict checks, etc.]

Supervising lawyer can be liable for misconduct if supervisor ordered or ratified improper conduct.

Liability of associate lawyer for following unethical orders:
1) Following orders - NOT A DEFENSE
2) If ethical issue is arguable - following "reasonable orders" - DEFENSE
GROUNDS FOR DISCIPLINE
1) Violation of any rules
2) Failure to disclose material info in bar application [NO SOL]
3) Refusal to cooperate w/disciplinary investigation
4) Crimes that adversely reflect on honesty or trustworthiness [willful failure to file taxes]
5) Conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, etc.
6) Willfully failing to pay child support
7) Misconduct prior to bar admission
8) Sex w/clients [Law firm not disqualified if lawyer is screened]
9) Disparagement, humiliation, and discrimination of litigant juror, witness, or other lawyer based on [race, gender, religion, disability, age, marital status, physical characteristics, employment, sexual orientation]

NOTE - Involvement in undercover investigation - NOT a basis for discipline.

REPORTING MISCONDUCT:
If info raises a SUBSTANTIAL Q as to another lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness to practice law = MUST REPORT

EXCEPTION - confidential info = cannot report
PROFESSIONALISM
1) Serving others
2) Enhancing knowledge and skills
3) Promoting fairness & justice
4) Demonstrating respect & courtesy
5) Promoting access to justice
6) License to practice law = PRIVILEGE used to promote public good and equal justice
7)Supporting candidates should be based on skill, knowledge, experience, integrity, and temperament.
8) Fee agreements should be discussed from the outset & promptly confirmed in writing.
9) Billing should be regular, frequent basis.
10) Fee disputes should be resolved through arbitration.
11) Ads should promote public confidence
12) Deadlines should not be arbitrary
13) Opposing motions should be reasonable
14) Be fair in scheduling
15) Do not limit opponent's ability to prepare or respond
16) Make good faith efforts to disclose W's & exhibits
17) Cooperate
18) Avoid distracting behavior including facial expressions
19) Do not exaggerate & mislead by silence
20) Make full disclosures to clients
21) All docs. must fairly reflect any agreement among parties.
22) Seek just, speedy, and inexpensive determination in every case - consider ADR
23) Withdraw claims that do not have merit.
24) Do not use discovery to harass or cause unnecessary expense.
25) Stipulate facts not in dispute.
26) Give ample notice when scheduling.
27) Select convenient time and place for everyone.
28) Be punctual.
29) Do not make decisions based on client's ill will.
30) Give objective advice; do not be unrealistic; consider all costs.