Legal Ethics

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Representing Clients In The Age Of Social Media Is Not As Easy As You Think

The proliferation of social media over the past decade has drastically changed how people communicate. Without much thought, people publicly post detailed personal information and photographs documenting their whereabouts and...more

Watergate Inspires After 40 Years

The audience sat rapt as Bill Ruckelshaus — former Deputy Attorney General of the United States — shared lessons for lawyers from Watergate, now 40 years past. Ruckelshaus resigned his number two position at the Justice...more

2014 Trends: #5 Top Ten Privacy and Related Ethics & Compliance Issues

Trend number 5 is on the docket today as we move down our list of ethics and compliance trends to watch in 2014. Privacy issues have led the headlines for years but their intersection with ethics and compliance is coming to...more

The GPMemorandum, Issue 176

In This Issue: - Missouri District Court Upholds Termination Of Franchise Based On Fraud: The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri recently upheld a franchisor’s decision to...more

Prosecutor’s Tweets May Have Been Improper but Did Not Deprive Defendant of Fair Trial

Last month, the Missouri Court of Appeals published its opinion holding that criminal defendant David Polk is not entitled to a new trial. Although the prosecutor may have acted improperly by posting trial updates via...more

The Relationship Status of Social Media Evidence and Ethics

Our social media posts reveal a lot about us and, while there are control mechanisms for keeping information private, there is a wealth of information readily discoverable. This makes the Internet fertile ground for lawyers...more

Back to the Future with Lloyd Cutler

One of the best lawyers I know was packing and unpacking some boxes recently and re-found an article she had read a number of years ago. The Role of the Private Law Firm was written by Lloyd Cutler – a founder of the...more

Suit Alleges Kentucky Disability Lawyer Colluded With Judge to Win Cases -- And Millions in Fees

A recently unveiled whistleblower lawsuit alleges that a prominent Kentucky disability lawyer illegally colluded with a federal disability judge to approve his clients' cases and reap the millions in attorney's fees that came...more

The Potential Pitfalls of Joint Representation

A recent California Court of Appeal opinion, Yanez v. Plummer, provides a cautionary tale for in-house counsel or outside attorneys who jointly represent their institutional client’s employees or agents in depositions. If...more

Influential Appeals Court Rejects Attempt by Former In-House Counsel to Use Privileged Information Against Company in...

The pool of potential qui tam relators may have just shrunk a little, based on a recent decision by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals that has put the ability of in-house lawyers to become qui tam relators into serious...more

Second Circuit: in-house counsel may not seek to profit as whistleblowers against former employers

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has issued an important ruling restricting in-house counsel from acting as whistleblowers in litigation against their current or former employers. ...more

Second Circuit Holds In-House Lawyer Precluded from Blowing Whistle on Former Employer

The Second Circuit issued an opinion tackling the interplay between an attorney's ethical obligation to maintain client confidences and the ability to act as a "whistleblower" to report unlawful conduct to the government. The...more

Stop-And-Frisk Judge Removed, Fights Back [Video]

Nov. 7 (Bloomberg Law) -- Last month a federal appellate court panel put a hold on changes to the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk practices and created a controversy by removing Judge Shira Scheindlin who had...more

Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Qui Tam Case Based on Attorney’s Use of Confidential Information

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently affirmed the decision of the District Court for the Southern District of New York to disqualify Fair Laboratory Practices Associates (FLPA) from its qui tam suit against...more

The Perils of In-House Counsel Simultaneously Representing Company and Employee

In Yanez v. Plummer (Nov. 5, 2013, C07026), the Third Appellate District issued an opinion highlighting the perils for an in-house lawyer who simultaneously represents the company and an employee. Union Pacific fired Michael...more

New York County Lawyers’ Association Issues Ethics Opinion Restricting Attorneys From Claiming Dodd-Frank Bounties

One of the more well-publicized parts of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (Dodd-Frank) is a whistleblower program that provides bounty payments to individuals who voluntarily provide...more

Read Before Whistleblowing: What Every Lawyer Needs to Know

In wake of ethics opinion, lawyers in New York — if not elsewhere — must think hard before considering whether to participate in the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Award Program. A recent SEC whistleblower award of $14 million may...more

Lawyers' Ethics Committee Deems New York Lawyers Ineligible for Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Bounties

The issue of whether attorneys may "blow the whistle" on conduct they reasonably believe violates securities laws, and thereby collect bounties under federal whistleblower laws, is controversial. ...more

Will Award-Seeking Whistleblower Lawyers Be Caught Between Conflicting SEC and State Ethics Rules?

Lawyers blowing the whistle on issuer clients might be “rewarded” with state bar investigations for possible breaches of their duty of confidentiality. Introduction - Every issuer of securities is a repository...more

Ethical Issues That Arise From Social Media Use In Courtrooms

With the rampant expansion of social media and online technologies over the past decade, it is no surprise that Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and blogs have made their way into the courtroom, pervaded the...more

New York Lawyers Generally Cannot Seek Bounties Under Dodd-Frank, Says New York Ethics Committee

The New York County Lawyers Association Committee on Professional Ethics released Formal Opinion 746 on October 7, in which the Committee considered whether New York lawyers can ethically collect bounties for submitting...more

Protecting Client Confidences “At Every Peril”

California expects a lot from attorneys when it comes to client confidences and the attorney-client privilege. - Evidence Code Section 955 imposes an affirmative duty on every lawyer who received or made a...more

Be Careful With That Axe -- Texas Breaks New Ground in Defamation Turned Court Records Case

Beware the law of unintended consequences. The Texas high court has just denied review of a court of appeals opinion in a case that began as a defamation action brought by a Texas state court judge against a Dallas-area...more

Are verein-style law firms ignoring ethics rules regarding fee-splitting?

Are verein-style law firms ignoring ethics rules regarding fee-splitting? Edwin B. Reeser and Martin J. Foley October 1, 2013 (Reprinted with permission of The ABA Journal, 2013) The last nine years have witnessed...more

Consultant: Legal Ethics Rulemaking Outpaced By Technology  [Video]

Sept. 26 (Bloomberg Law) -- Adrian Dayton, law firm consultant and columnist for National Law Journal, talks with Bloomberg Law's Lee Pacchia about three recent legal ethics opinions on lawyers and law firms using LinkedIn....more

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