Watch Your (Online) Mouth

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sealedlipsFacebook, blogs, and other online venues let lawyers reach a broader audience—including judges—so be careful what you say.

A Florida attorney ripped a judge on a popular local blog after he was given one week to prepare for a criminal trial. The Florida Bar reprimanded and fined the attorney; on review the Florida Supreme Court upheld the fine.

A Texas attorney asked for a trial delay because of a death in the family. The judge granted the attorney’s request, but then denied a second delay after viewing the attorney’s Facebook page and deciding the attorney was not expressing much grief.

Creating an online presence for yourself is a great idea, but where do you draw the line? Think before you write, and remember that everything you post and write online is out there forever. If it sounds like something you wouldn’t say in court, do not post it. That might sound conservative, but it does not hurt your reputation or your bank account to err on the side of caution.

Online attitude vs. the rules of the bar | NY Times

(photo: Darkumber)

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