Legal Ethics

  • September 22, 2023

    Giuliani Ordered To Cough Up $237K In Ga. Poll Workers' Suit

    Rudy Giuliani owes roughly $237,000 stemming from unpaid sanctions and legal fees in a suit brought by Georgia poll workers who say he accused them of ballot fraud in the 2020 presidential election, according to an order issued Friday.

  • September 22, 2023

    Jan. 6 Atty Says Ex-Prosecutor's Tweet Is 'Insidious Lie'

    Stefan Passantino, a former Trump administration attorney who represented former aide Cassidy Hutchinson during the House select committee's investigation into the Jan. 6 insurrection, on Friday accused former federal prosecutor Andrew Weissmann of defamation for posting a tweet claiming Passantino coached Hutchinson to lie during her congressional testimony.

  • September 22, 2023

    Kagan Calls High Court Ethics Code A 'Good Idea'

    U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan on Friday lamented the public's souring perception of the high court, saying that in order to restore the court's image the justices must address "legitimate" concerns about ethics and stop upending long-standing precedent.

  • September 22, 2023

    Legal Funder Says Conn. Dept. Can't Police Its 'Investments'

    A legal funding company is fighting a $25,000 fine imposed by Connecticut's banking regulator for unlicensed operation, telling a state court that the agency doesn't control the matter because the transactions are investments and not loans.

  • September 22, 2023

    SEC Case Receiver Sues Atty To Undo 'Fraudulent Transfers'

    A court-appointed receiver for a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement case has filed a lawsuit in Colorado federal court as part of his "efforts to trace, recapture, and return to investors millions of dollars of losses in a fraudulent Forex trading scheme," naming an attorney, his law firm and others as defendants in the suit.

  • September 22, 2023

    Ill. Justices Disbar 3, Suspend 9 In Latest Disciplinary Order

    The Illinois Supreme Court has disbarred three attorneys, suspended nine and issued several other sanctions in its latest order addressing misconduct that included misrepresenting law firm startup contributions, reacting vulgarly to a trial judge's evidentiary ruling and helping a family member commit bankruptcy fraud.

  • September 22, 2023

    Yogi Bows Out Of TM Case Against

    A yoga instructor has agreed to end her trademark suit in Michigan federal court against, about a year and a half after her counsel was hit with sanctions for pursuing an unsubstantiated trademark bullying claim.

  • September 22, 2023

    Colo. Judge Dismisses Opposing Attys' Defamation Spat

    A Colorado state judge has dismissed a defamation lawsuit brought by an attorney against his opposing counsel in a separate case, after the plaintiff said he no longer needs to pursue the lawsuit because of surveillance video apparently proving he didn't record a hallway conversation without notice.

  • September 22, 2023

    Ga. Libel Litigants Face Essay Style Sanctions

    A Georgia federal judge ordered both sides of a defamation lawsuit to read moderate conservative cultural commentator David Brooks' column entitled "How Did America Get So Mean?" as a sanction in the libel suit that the judge said "devolved into a particular form of meanness — social media harassment," while also handing defendants a win.

  • September 22, 2023

    Ex-Aide Wants Suit Against Sister's NJ Firm In State Court

    A former aide at her sister's New Jersey law firm has urged a federal judge to move her lawsuit against the practice back to New Jersey state court and grant her attorney fees, arguing the federal court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over her anticipatory breach of contract and retaliation claims.

  • September 22, 2023

    NJ Judicial Protections Law Survives Constitutional Challenge

    A journalist has lost his New Jersey state lawsuit seeking an exception to a state law shielding judges' and others' personal information from public disclosure, with a judge finding that those protections outweighed the benefits of publishing a story documenting the home address of a city police director

  • September 22, 2023

    Vexatious Vs. Virtuous: Del. Chancery Battles Dip In Decorum

    Nearly three decades after a "maggot" reference in a deposition prompted the Delaware Supreme Court to rebuke a lack of civility, a certain roughness is creeping back into the state's legal proceedings — and the Court of Chancery wants it to stop.

  • September 22, 2023

    Georgia DAs' Fear Of 'Witch Hunt' Unfounded, Judge Told

    Counsel for members of Georgia's new commission tasked with investigating complaints against prosecutors urged an Atlanta judge Friday to reject an attempt by four district attorneys to halt the commission's work before it starts accepting complaints Oct. 1.

  • September 22, 2023

    'Overzealous' Fla. Atty Gets Discipline For Criticizing Judge

    A Florida attorney received an admonishment and must attend ethics school after he "crossed the line" by unintentionally impugning a judge, an action in violation of Florida Bar rules, court records show.

  • September 22, 2023

    Fenwick, Celebrities Seek To Toss FTX Investors' Suit

    Fenwick & West LLP, several celebrities and others facing investor claims related to the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX have asked a Florida federal court to dismiss the litigation against them.

  • September 22, 2023

    Texas AG Paxton's Troubles Endure After Impeachment Win

    Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is back on the job after being cleared by the Texas Senate at his impeachment trial over his ties to real estate investor Nate Paul. Yet the embattled politician's legal troubles are far from over.

  • September 22, 2023

    EV Maker Says Richards Layton Can Represent It In Ch. 11

    Lordstown Motors is defending its proposed retention of Richards Layton & Finger PA as its bankruptcy co-counsel, disputing the federal bankruptcy watchdog's contention that a conflict exists that should disqualify the Delaware firm from representing the electric-truck maker in its Chapter 11.

  • September 22, 2023

    Russian Exec Should Get 21 Mos. For Asylum Fraud, Feds Say

    The co-director of an immigration assistance company should get 21 months in prison for facilitating years of asylum fraud, perjuring himself during trial and defending his conduct after his conviction, Manhattan federal prosecutors said in a filing Thursday.

  • September 22, 2023

    Consumer Atty Rips Fireball Maker's Belated Sanctions Bid

    A prolific plaintiffs' attorney recently profiled in The New Yorker urged an Illinois federal judge Thursday to reject Sazerac Company Inc.'s sanctions bid that alleges he sues without regard to the facts and law, arguing that the maker of Fireball liquor waited months after the consumer case was voluntarily dropped to seek sanctions.

  • September 22, 2023

    Ex-NC Candidate Says She Settled Atty's Defamation Row

    A former Democratic candidate for the North Carolina Senate says she has resolved claims she defamed her Republican opponent, a real estate attorney with the firm Lee Kaess PLLC, with a false campaign ad, admitting in a social media post that the "accusations were not based on actual facts."

  • September 22, 2023

    Immigration Judges' Free Speech Challenge Tossed Again

    A Virginia federal judge has ruled that the National Association of Immigration Judges has standing to challenge a policy the judges say violates their right to freely discuss their immigration views in public but ultimately nixed their lawsuit, saying it belongs elsewhere.

  • September 22, 2023

    Firm Fights Sanctions In Georgia-Pacific Unit's Bankruptcy

    A law firm and group of plaintiffs asked the Fourth Circuit on Friday to overturn nearly $420,000 in sanctions as part of bankruptcy proceedings for a Georgia-Pacific unit, arguing that a sanctions order in a bankruptcy is available for review.

  • September 21, 2023

    5th Circ. Scraps $125M Ruling Over Judge-Atty Friendship

    The Fifth Circuit on Thursday vacated a $124.5 million award to the tenant of a Lake Charles, Louisiana, seaport in its yearslong contract fight with the port, finding that allegations the magistrate judge never disclosed her longtime friendship with the seaport's counsel raise "serious doubts" about the port's consent for the jurist to hear the case.

  • September 21, 2023

    Calif. Bar Chair Moves On After Enacting Girardi Reforms

    The State Bar of California's chair marked his last meeting Thursday with hopes that the agency will continue forging a productive relationship with state lawmakers after the Girardi Keese scandal led to a steady trickle of damaging revelations about past officials at the regulatory agency.

  • September 21, 2023

    Chesebro Wants Evidence Excluded In Ga. Election Case

    Former Trump campaign attorney Kenneth Chesebro, one of two defendants in the Georgia election interference case scheduled for trial in October, has asked the judge to throw out key evidence the state plans to use, including legal memos specifically mentioned in the indictment.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    Private Equity Owners Can Remedy Law Firms' Agency Issues

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    Nonlawyer, private-equity ownership of law firms can benefit shareholders and others vulnerable to governance issues such as disparate interests, and can in turn help resolve agency problems, says Michael Di Gennaro at The Law Practice Exchange.

  • How To Protect Atty-Client Privilege While Using Generative AI

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    When using generative artificial intelligence tools, attorneys should consider several safeguards to avoid breaches or complications in attorney-client privilege, say Antonious Sadek and Christopher Campbell at DLA Piper.

  • How New Lawyers Can Leverage Feedback For Growth

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    Embracing constructive criticism as a tool for success can help new lawyers accelerate their professional growth and law firms build a culture of continuous improvement, says Katie Aldrich at Fringe Professional Development.

  • Twitter Legal Fees Suit Offers Crash Course In Billing Ethics

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    X Corp.'s suit alleging that Wachtell grossly inflated its fees in the final days of Elon Musk’s Twitter acquisition provides a case study in how firms should protect their reputations by hewing to ethical billing practices and the high standards for professional conduct that govern attorney-client relationships, says Lourdes Fuentes at Karta Legal.

  • ABA's Money-Laundering Resolution Is A Balancing Act

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    While the American Bar Association’s recently passed resolution recognizes a lawyer's duty to discontinue representation that could facilitate money laundering and other fraudulent activity, it preserves, at least for now, the delicate balance of judicial, state-based regulation of the legal profession and the sanctity of the attorney-client relationship, say attorneys at Ballard Spahr.

  • Law Firm Professional Development Steps To Thrive In AI Era

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    As generative artificial intelligence tools rapidly evolve, professional development leaders are instrumental in preparing law firms for the paradigm shifts ahead, and should consider three strategies to help empower legal talent with the skills required to succeed in an increasingly complex technological landscape, say Steve Gluckman and Anusia Gillespie at SkillBurst Interactive.

  • Nev. Insurance Law May Mean Turmoil In Liability Market

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    Nevada's new law prohibiting insurers from issuing or renewing defense-within-limits liability policies in the state could cause professional liability insurers to withdraw certain products or prohibitively increase premiums — and while an emergency regulation allows for exceptions, the situation remains fluid, says Joshua Leach at Atheria Law.

  • Lessons From High-Profile Witness Tampering Allegations

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    As demonstrated by recent developments in the cases against former President Donald Trump and FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, allegations of witness tampering can carry serious consequences — but attorneys can employ certain strategies to mitigate the risk that accusations arise, says Kenneth Notter at MoloLamken.

  • Covington Ruling Strengthens SEC's Enforcement Powers

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    A Washington, D.C., federal court’s recent order that Covington & Burling provide the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission with the identities of its clients in response to a subpoena reinforces the agency’s broad authority to investigate cybersecurity violations, and suggests law firms must take steps to strengthen data privacy, say Elisha Kobre and Ryan Dean at Bradley Arant.

  • 'Blind Side' Family Case Is A Cautionary Tale For Attorneys

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    Former NFL player Michael Oher's recent allegations against Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy that they never legally adopted him and tricked him into conservatorship — which paint a very different picture than the 2009 film "The Blind Side" — demonstrate the importance of attorney due diligence and safeguards against abuse of process, says Roland Weekley at Smith Gambrell.

  • The Basics Of Being A Knowledge Management Attorney

    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
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    Michael Lehet at Ogletree Deakins discusses the role of knowledge management attorneys at law firms, the common tasks they perform and practical tips for lawyers who may be considering becoming one.

  • To Hire And Keep Top Talent, Think Beyond Compensation

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    Firms seeking to appeal to sophisticated clients and top-level partners should promote mentorship, ensure that attorneys from diverse backgrounds feel valued, and clarify policies about at-home work, says Patrick Moya at Quaero Group.

  • Ethics Issues For Mainland Firms Involved In Maui Fire Suits

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    Before law firms located outside of Hawaii represent clients affected by the Lahaina wildfires, they must be aware of local ethics rules and regulatory gray areas, as any any ethical missteps could have major ramifications for the firm's practice in its home jurisdiction, says Ryan Little at Klinedinst.

  • Perspectives

    More States Should Join Effort To Close Legal Services Gap

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    Colorado is the most recent state to allow other types of legal providers, not just attorneys, to offer specific services in certain circumstances — and more states should rethink the century-old assumptions that shape our current regulatory rules, say Natalie Anne Knowlton and Janet Drobinske at the University of Denver.

  • Identifying Trends And Tips In Litigation Financing Disclosure

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    Growing interest and controversy in litigation financing raise several salient concerns, but exploring recent compelled disclosure trends from courts around the country can help practitioners further their clients' interests, say Sean Callagy and Samuel Sokolsky at Arnold & Porter.

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