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© 2005 by Thomson DelmarLearning. All Rights Reserved.1 CALIFORNIA CIVIL LITIGATION ETHICS IN LITIGATION.

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Presentation on theme: "© 2005 by Thomson DelmarLearning. All Rights Reserved.1 CALIFORNIA CIVIL LITIGATION ETHICS IN LITIGATION."— Presentation transcript:

1 © 2005 by Thomson DelmarLearning. All Rights Reserved.1 CALIFORNIA CIVIL LITIGATION ETHICS IN LITIGATION

2 2 ETHICS FOR ATTORNEYS Rules of Professional Conduct

3 3 RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT Prohibit:  Unauthorized practice of law  Misleading advertising  Solicitation

4 4 RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT— Govern:  Relationships with other attorneys  Relationships with clients  Representation  Advocacy

5 5 UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW Attorneys may not:  Form law partnerships with non-lawyers  Aid non-lawyers in the practice of law  Share legal fees with non-lawyers

6 6 ADVERTISING Attorneys may advertise if it is true and not misleading.

7 7 SOLICITATION Attorneys may not solicit a prospective client who has no history with the firm.

8 8 RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN ATTORNEYS Attorneys may not communicate with represented parties. Attorneys may share fees with other attorneys.

9 9 RELATIONSHIPS WITH CLIENTS An attorney must:  Communicate written settlement offers  Not contract to limit liability  Guard client confidences  Keep client informed

10 10 REPRESENTATION Attorneys may not:  Threaten criminal action  Mislead the court  Influence a juror  Hide a witness

11 11 TERMINATING CLIENTS  Client may terminate for any reason  Attorney must cooperate in transition  Withdrawal may be mandatory or voluntary

12 12 CLIENT FUNDS Attorney may accept client trust deposits. Attorney may not commingle funds with client trust deposits.

13 13 ADVOCACY Attorneys must be competent to handle the cases they accept. Attorneys may not accept unmeritorious cases.

14 14 PARALEGAL RULES OF CONDUCT Business & Professions Code §§

15 15 PARALEGALS DEFINED Qualified by combinations of:  Experience  Education  Training

16 16 PARALEGAL SERVICES Paralegals must be employed and supervised by attorneys.

17 17 CONTINUING EDUCATION LEGAL ETHICS: Four hours every three years GENERAL LEGAL EDUCATION: Four hours every two years CERTIFICATION: By supervising attorney

18 18 PARALEGALS MAY NOT:  Negotiate an attorney’s fee  Appear for a client  Give legal advice

19 19 SUCCESSFUL PARALEGALS:  Hold the client’s interest paramount  Adhere to the highest ethical standards  Provide the same quality work as attorneys

20 20 SUMMARY Paralegal/Attorney Ethics, Voluntary/Mandatory Standards PREVIEW Court System, Introduction to Pleadings SUMMARY Paralegal/Attorney Ethics, Voluntary/Mandatory Standards PREVIEW Court System, Introduction to Pleadings


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