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.

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Shillelagh-Brandishing Potty Mouth Loses Law License

While Gmail’s new “Undo” feature can save you from an all-too-hasty click, it cannot save you from your own stupidity. On January 7, the Louisiana Hearing Committee recommended one fiery lawyer’s permanent disbarment after determining he “had to be admonished for brandishing about his shillelagh, his action clearly inappropriate for a disciplinary proceeding.” The lawyer had been […]

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The Lawyers’ Guide to Hacking Threats

As quickly as we build new technology to keep criminals out, hackers are working around the clock, and using sophisticated tools like Darkode, to climb your security walls. Prevent these attacks with a

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Sexism = Sanctions

From the fact that women argue a miniscule amount of SCOTUS cases to the persistent pay gap to the depressingly small number of female equity partners, we all know that the law profession can be terrible for women. Perhaps that is why seeing a resounding benchslap directed at a sexist attorney is so satisfying. It isn’t uncommon […]

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How To Avoid Billing for Interruptions

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

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The Impact of White Teeth on Legal Tech

After the U.S. Supreme Court decided that dental associations can’t regulate teeth whitening services, professional associations of all kinds were hit with similar lawsuits—including bar associations. Now, to avoid looking like they have a monopoly on legal services, bar associations may be forced to play ball with some legal tech companies they have been trying to push […]

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Year-End Law Practice Checklist

The New Year is a great time for refreshing of all kinds, including refreshing your office and practice and setting yourself up for success. Take the time to put in place the tools for a great and prosperous year.

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Which One is the Client?

A lawyer cannot follow a client's direction if they do not know the identity of their client. It may sound like an academic question, but there are many real-life situations where attorneys may be faced with the dilemma of client identity. Here are a few of those scenarios:

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Judge Smacked Down for Smacking a Public Defender

About 18 months ago, Brevard County, Florida, Judge John C. Murphy decided it was a great idea to verbally threaten a public defender and then double down and helpfully offer to “beat his *ss.” Better still, it is all on video. In case you didn’t feel like sitting through a grainy video, here’s what happened […]

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You Probably Should Not Live-Tweet a Trial You Are Watching

If you are a law firm partner, blogger, and tweeter of law-related things, it probably behooves you to pay attention to things like whether a court is allowing pictures on any given day. And you really should think about what you throw on your Twitter feed when you are hanging out on the courtroom. Witness the […]

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The Strangest Things Lawyers Have Tried to Bill For

From recording billable hours to explaining fees to clients and reviewing the bill all over again, billing is rarely fun and provides little creative outlet. That is unless you’re doing it wrong.

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Who Decides What in the Attorney-Client Relationship

The attorney-client relationship is one of varying degrees of collaboration, depending on how involved your client chooses to be, how sophisticated they are in legal matters, and the type of case. But no matter how sophisticated your client may be, certain decisions lie with the client and some are within the discretion of the lawyer.

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Don’t Call Your Clients if They Are in Prison

Recently, people behind bars who needed to make phone calls got a piece of semi-good news: the cost of their phone calls would decrease from criminally high rates to merely obscenely high rates, thanks to the FCC. Even more recently, though, people behind bars who needed to make phone calls got a piece of super […]

“First Amendment Badass” Under Fire

Marc Randazza is an outspoken, high-profile, and very polarizing First Amendment lawyer. If you know him you probably love him or hate him. Not many people fall in between. He’s done some high-profile First Amendment work, and he’s sued people for downloading porn illegally. Today, he probably earned more haters from this article by Joe Mullin in Ars […]

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State Restrictions on Advertising

Thanks to the myriad types of electronic communications and social media channels now at our disposal, the venues in which lawyers can theoretically advertise has exploded. Here's where all 50 states (and the District of Columbia) are on the issue of advertising right now.

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The Dos and Don’ts of Researching Judges and Juries Online

It makes sense to research potential jurors, and social media makes it easier than ever. But courts have only recently begun to issue guidance now that researching jurors and other courtroom players online is becoming an increasingly common practice. Researching judges, too, has its advantages. Some jurisdictions, like California, allow you to strike a judge once per case without establishing bias. Although there are limitations […]