Trust Accounting Basics
Proper trust accounting is vital to keeping attorneys out of ethics trouble. Learn the rules and know where to turn with questions.
Can Depressed Lawyers Escape Discipline by Invoking the ADA?
The Americans with Disabilities Act protects people with disabilities — including mental illness — from discrimination. So can a lawyer with a disability invoke the ADA when ethics regulators impose discipline for behavior that stems directly from the disability?
Sample Document-Destruction Policy
Voluminous paper and electronic files are not just a hassle to store and manage, but keeping files beyond your ethical obligation to do so can actually be troublesome.
Luddite Lawyers Are Ethical Violations Waiting To Happen
Technological incompetence used to be merely a competitive disadvantage. Now, it is a potential ethics violation — or even legal malpractice. During my first year of law school, we were not allowed to do computerized research. Instead, we were taught to use the leather-bound reporters, Shepherds, and treatises. It was only during our second year […]
Ethics Regulators Shouldn’t Try to Keep Pace With Changes In Technology
The slow pace of development is usually good for both law and our legal ethics rules. In fact, if ethics rule changes were fast-tracked to keep up with changes in technology, the rule of law would suffer.
Astroturfing to Technethics, the New Vocabulary of Ethics
New technology brings new words, and the evolution of legal ethics and social media is no different. Fun terms like "astroturfing" and "technethics" have joined the discussion.
Can You Disseminate Embarrassing Client Information Online And Get Away With It?
A Virginia lawyer's blog including embarrassing details about clients is protected by the First Amendment -- but not exempt from attorney advertising rules.
Judges Cannot “Do Over” Even When They Give a Rapist 30 Days Instead of 2 Years
Judges make grievous errors like giving a rapist whose crime mandates a minimum 2-year prison term a sentence of only 30 days, but they cannot simply hit the undo button and try again.
Court Practices May Ignore Your Fax Filing While A Default Is Taken Against You
Many courts allow filings by fax, but when you need it most and are up against a deadline, what happens if the court does not handle your filing in a timely fashion? What if the other side seeks a default while your faxed filing gathers dust?
Judge Threatens to Strangle Lawyer in Death Penalty Case, Calls Defendant a “Carcass”
Kentucky's Judge Martin McDonald has behaved very badly in open court. Now retired, he calls the commission issuing his reprimand "clowns."
Does Your Disclaimer Really Disclaim?
Lawyers put lengthy disclaimers on everything they send, but do they actually do any good? Perhaps – so they are worth using just in case.
Cloud Computing — Storm Ahead?
Cloud computing is gaining ground daily, but how are lawyers to comply with ethical obligations when the rules have not caught up to technology?
Emotional Distress for Legal Malpractice? Possibly…
Legal malpractice claims do not generally lead to recovery of emotional distress damages, but the Iowa Supreme Court is making headlines for reminding us there is always an exception to every rule.
Three Commonly-Violated Ethics Rules
Three commonly-violated attorney ethics rules and the simple way to avoid violating them.
Zimmerman Prosecution Unlikely To See Ethics Charges
George Zimmerman’s prosecutors should face ethics charges, but they won't.