Legal Ethics

We all want to reduce our risk for legal malpractice.

Here you can find our thoughts on attorney-client privilege, existing client communication and your duties with potential clients.

We also discuss your emerging responsibilities in regards to online privacy and security.

Need more ideas? Join other innovative lawyers in the Lawyerist LAB.

shutterstock_191113115

4 Ways You Are Putting Your Clients’ Information at Risk

A lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to prevent the inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure of, or unauthorized access to, information relating to the representation of a client. (Rule 1.6(c).) So what are reasonable efforts when it comes to your clients’ information stored on your computer? You have to make an effort, obviously. But how much effort […]

1431620845048761

Be Careful What You Reveal About Clients on Your Website

Be very careful about the information you share on your website. Even if you think it's not enough information for someone to put a name to your client, you might be surprised. And if you are, you might wind up talking to an ethics investigator.

shutterstock_209014315

70% of Lawyers Don’t Know What the Internet Is

Every year at ABA TECHSHOW, we get the results of the ABA’s annual technology survey. This year we learned that only 30% of lawyers say they use a web-based service.

confidential

The Difference Between Confidentiality and the Attorney-Client Privilege

Attorneys often confuse the ethical concept of the duty of confidentiality and the evidence concept of the attorney-client privilege. Let’s clear up some of that fuzziness.

shutterstock_211673908

In 13 States, You Can’t Be a Luddite Anymore

The comment to Rule 1.1 spreads awareness, if nothing else, that being incompetent when it comes to technology is no excuse when your clients are harmed.

shutterstock_89995051

5 Questions to Ask Before Taking a Deposition

Before you file your next deposition notice, ask yourself if the deposition is really necessary. If the answer is no and you take the deposition anyway, you are wasting time, driving up litigation costs, and perhaps even damaging your case.

shutterstock_39457360

Do NOT Let Your Client Write Your Petition for a Writ of Certiorari

"Shipley basically let his client write his brief, and the thing turned into an utter shitshow. Witness the nightmare hellscape that is the question presented in this case …"

podcast-logo-post-image

Podcast #8: Aaron Hall’s Client-Satisfaction Guarantee

Sam and Aaron talk with Jeena Cho about why jerky law students become jerky lawyers, and then Aaron Hall explains why and how he is giving some clients a satisfaction guarantee.

This Email is Not Authentic

Nothing says "clueless Luddite" like a pointless email disclaimer.

2015-02-11_10-29-12

Lawyers Shouldn’t Be Allowed to Carry Cell Phones

While I'm sure each of these lawyers carefully scanned the dimly-lit audience for adverse parties and known gossips, it still seems like a bad idea.

podcast-logo-post-image

Podcast #5: Brian Tannebaum’s Brutal Truths About Lawyers and Lawyering

Morning pages, robot lawbreakers, and an interview with Brian Tannebaum, the eminent law blogger who just published The Practice: Brutal Truths About Lawyers and Lawyering.

shutterstock_164920298

Go Tell The California Bar What You Think About Blogging Right Now

If you are a California attorney with even the remotest bit of blogging savvy, it may be time for you to respond to this Request for Comment from the the State Bar of California. We already know that most legal marketing ethics rules are a hot over-regulated mess. California’s State Bar wrote a far-too-many-words position paper with […]

shutterstock_112806700

How to Avoid Practicing Law After Selling Your Practice

After a sale, you must “cease to engage in the private practice of law.” Does that mean you must hand over the keys, walk out the door, and immediately ride off into retirement sunset?

shutterstock_201093026

How To Avoid Billing for Interruptions

More than almost any other type of worker, lawyers overestimate the amount of time they spend working.

shutterstock_135718025

Prevent Phone Calls From Monopolizing Your Time

Keep your clients happy, your phone from ringing, and yourself out of ethical trouble.