Effective July 1, 2014 T.C.A 50-6-236(c) (1) When mediation is held, a person representing the employee and the employer, or the employer’s insurer, with the authority to settle, shall attend. It shall not be required that the state or its representative who attends mediation have final settlement authority.
T.C.A 50-6-236(c) (1) Parties entering into mediation shall be prepared to mediate all disputed issues at the beginning of mediation and shall mediate all issues in good faith.
T.C.A 50-6-236(c) (2) When a mediator determines that a party is not prepared to mediate as required or believes a party is not mediating in good faith, the mediator shall include comments to that effect in the dispute certification notice. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
T.C.A 50-6-236(g) If, following a request by the mediator, a party fails to produce documents, to cooperate in scheduling mediation, or to provide a representative, mediator may issue a notice… If the workers’ compensation judge determines that the failure lacked good cause or resulted from bad faith, the judge may assess attorney’s fees and costs … On the motion of either party, a workers’ compensation judge is authorized, but not required, to hold a hearing…
RPC 1.2(a): Scope of Representation and Allocation of Authority Between Client and Lawyer Subject to paragraphs (c) and (d), a lawyer shall abide by a client's decisions concerning the objectives of representation and, as required by RPC 1.4, shall consult with the client about the means by which the client's objectives are to be accomplished. A lawyer may take such action on behalf of the client as is impliedly authorized to carry out the representation. A lawyer shall abide by a client's decision whether to settle a matter. In a criminal case, the lawyer shall abide by the client's decision, after consultation with the lawyer, as to a plea to be entered, whether to waive jury trial, and whether the client will testify.
RPC 1.3: Diligence A lawyer shall act with reasonable diligence and promptness in representing a client. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
RPC 1.4: Communication (a) A lawyer shall: (1) promptly inform the client of any decision or circumstance with respect to which the client's informed consent, as defined in RPC 1.0(e), is required by these Rules; (2) reasonably consult with the client about the means by which the client's objectives are to be accomplished; (3) keep the client reasonably informed about the status of the matter; (4) promptly comply with reasonable requests for information; and (5) consult with the client about any relevant limitation on the lawyer's conduct when the lawyer knows that the client expects assistance not permitted by the Rules of Professional Conduct or other law. (b) A lawyer shall explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit the client to make informed decisions regarding the representation.
RPC 1.6: Confidentiality of Information (a) A lawyer shall not reveal information relating to the representation of a client unless: (1) the client gives informed consent; (2) the disclosure is impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation; or (3) the disclosure is permitted by paragraph (b) or required by paragraph (c).
RPC 1.6: Confidentiality of Information (b) A lawyer may reveal information relating to the representation of a client to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary: (1)to prevent the client or another person from committing a crime, including a crime that is reasonably certain to result in substantial injury to the financial interest or property of another, unless disclosure is prohibited or restricted by RPC 3.3; (2)to prevent the client from committing a fraud that is reasonably certain to result in substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another and in furtherance of which the client has used or is using the lawyer's services, unless disclosure is prohibited or restricted by RPC 3.3; (3)to prevent, mitigate, or rectify substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another that is reasonably certain to result or has resulted from the client's commission of a fraud in furtherance of which the client has used the lawyer's services, unless disclosure is prohibited or restricted by RPC 3.3; (4)to secure legal advice about the lawyer's compliance with these Rules; or (5)to establish a claim or defense on behalf of the lawyer in a controversy between the lawyer and the client, to establish a defense to a criminal charge or civil claim against the lawyer based upon conduct in which the client was involved, or to respond to allegations in any proceeding concerning the lawyer's representation of the client.
RPC 1.6: Confidentiality of Information (c)A lawyer shall reveal information relating to the representation of a client to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes disclosure is necessary: (1) to prevent reasonably certain death or substantial bodily harm; (2) to comply with an order of a tribunal requiring disclosure, but only if ordered to do so by the tribunal after the lawyer has asserted on behalf of the client all non-frivolous claims that the information sought by the tribunal is protected against disclosure by the attorney- client privilege or other applicable law; or (3) to comply with RPC 3.3, 4.1, or other law. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
RPC 4.1(a): Truthfulness in Statements to Others In the course of representing a client, a lawyer shall not knowingly make a false statement of material fact or law to a third person.
RPC 4.1, Comment : A lawyer is required to be truthful when dealing with others on a client's behalf, but generally has no affirmative duty to inform an opposing party of relevant facts or law. A misrepresentation can occur if the lawyer incorporates or affirms a statement of another person that the lawyer knows is false. Misrepresentations can also occur by partially true but misleading statements or omissions that are the equivalent of affirmative false statements. For dishonest conduct that does not amount to a false statement or for misrepresentations by a lawyer other than in the course of representing a client, see RPC 8.4. A lawyer is required to be truthful, but generally has no affirmative duty to inform an opposing party of relevant facts or law.
RPC 4.1, Comment : This Rule refers to statements of fact. Whether a particular statement should be regarded as one of fact can depend on the circumstances. Under generally accepted conventions in negotiation, certain types of statements ordinarily are not taken as statements of material fact. Estimates of price or value placed on the subject of a transaction and a party's intentions as to an acceptable settlement of a claim are ordinarily in this category, as is the existence of an undisclosed principal except where nondisclosure of the principal would constitute fraud. Lawyers should be mindful of their obligations under applicable law to avoid criminal and tortious misrepresentation. Estimates of price or value… …a party’s intentions as to an acceptable settlement… …the existence of an undisclosed principal… In negotiation, certain types of statements ordinarily are not taken as statements of material fact.
RPC 8.3: Reporting Professional Misconduct (a) A lawyer who knows that another lawyer has committed a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct that raises a substantial question as to that lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer in other respects, shall inform the Disciplinary Counsel of the Board of Professional Responsibility. …violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct… …lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer…
“First, can we agree that it’s a big back yard?” ABA Commission on Professional Ethics and Grievances Formal Opinion 439 (2006) (Lawyer’s Obligation of Truthfulness when Representing a Client in Negotiation: Application to Caucused Mediation.) http://www.americanbar.org/groups/professional_responsibility/publications/ethics_opinions.html ABA Commission on Professional Ethics and Grievances Formal Opinion 439 (2006) (Lawyer’s Obligation of Truthfulness when Representing a Client in Negotiation: Application to Caucused Mediation.) http://www.americanbar.org/groups/professional_responsibility/publications/ethics_opinions.html
A lawyer generally has no ethical duty to make affirmative disclosures of fact. RPC 4.1, Comment  Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
If you attend workers’ compensation mediation and are not prepared and NOT mediating in good faith, can a civil penalty be imposed? A. Yes B. No C. I wasn’t paying attention
A.YES. See T.C.A. 50-6-236(c)(1) and (3) Workers’ compensation mediations require parties to prepare to mediate in good faith with the possibility of a civil penalty for failure to do so.
Does demanding a settlement figure that exceeds any possible result based upon existing impairment ratings violate good faith? A.Yes B. No C. The speaker should know. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
Arguably no. See RPC 4.1, Comment 2: “Estimates of price or value…and the parties’ intentions as to any acceptable settlement of a claim are ordinarily not statements of material fact.” Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
Does it reflect a lack of good faith to fail to make an offer that includes leaving medical treatment open, even though the court would have to order open medicals at the conclusion of the trial? A.Yes B.No C.Who knows? Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
Arguably no. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
Is untimely disclosure of medical records a lack of good faith? A.Yes B. No C. It depends
Arguably yes. See RPC 1.3; RPC 3.2 and T.C.A. 50-6-236(g)
5. QUESTION: Do I have a duty to take action if the opposing attorney acts rude and aggressive to me as opposing counsel, my client the opposing party and the mediator? A. Yes B. No C. It is the Board’s problem, not mine. problem, not mine. Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
5. ANSWER A.Yes. See RPC 8.3 Text 210725 and your Questions to 22333
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