Communications with Government Officials Under Rule 4.2
Ethics Docket 2018-06
You request an opinion regarding how the Maryland Attorneys’ Rules of Professional Conduct (MRPC) would affect a firm’s practice that includes representing private parties against the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) while you work as “of counsel” to the firm if you were to run for and serve in the Maryland General Assembly.
Duty of Attorney Under Rule 1.15 With Respect to Settlement Proceeds
You have asked for an opinion regarding your responsibilities when the parents of a minor child have refused to accept a settlement of the child’s claim that you would believe would be favorable to the child. We believe that you are required to follow the instructions of the parents, as the guardians of the child, but that you may withdraw if you are strongly opposed to the parent’s course of action
You have requested an opinion concerning whether a lawyer may operate a tax practice in a law firm as well as a separate and distinct business as a certified financial planner (CFP).
Rule 4.2 Communication with Person Represented by Counsel Guidance
Do the Maryland Rules of Professional Conduct permit an attorney licensed in District of Columbia and Illinois to work with a law firm as “Of Counsel” representing clients in various locations -including California, Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia -in Federal Security Clearance matters, which are administrative proceedings before federal agencies such as the U.S. Department of Defense, the National Security Agency, and other agencies
As part of settling a lawsuit, does it violate the Maryland Rules of Professional Conduct for a defendant to propose to or for a plaintiff’s attorney to agree to never discuss or disclose the underlying facts of the lawsuit which are already a matter of public record?
Do the Maryland Rules of Professional conduct prohibit attorneys from advising clients seeking to engage in conduct pursuant to Maryland’s Medical Marijuana Laws? Similarly, do the Rules prohibit Maryland attorneys from having an ownership interest in medical marijuana businesses?
May nonlawyers serve on the advisory board of directors of a Maryland nonstock corporate law firm, which provides pro bono and discounted legal services, while that corporation’s application for tax-exempt status is pending determination by the IRS? & If the IRS grants that corporation’s application for tax-exempt status, may nonlawyers serve on either the corporation’s advisory board or its governing board of directors?
What must an attorney do when a client refuses to accept or endorse a settlement check after signing a release, the case concerning the client’s claim has been dismissed, and the client requests that the attorney forgo payment of the attorney’s fee from the settlement proceeds?
Whether a lawyer can pay a fee to an online legal directory for increased visibility throughout the website, including on other lawyers’ profile pages?
Whether a Legal Clinic can disclaim the attorney client relationship and require clients to waive confidentiality
Whether an attorney has any duty to take steps to correct a sentencing order prepared by the clerk which erroneously states the sentence in his client’s favor after the mistake was brought to the attention of the court, referred to, and rejected by, the clerk.
You have asked for an opinion as to whethera lawyer’s participation in an online fixedfee legal services program would constitute fee-sharing with a non-attorney.
Duties to Former Clients
Formal ethics opinion regarding whether you may distribute to yourselves earned fees that are currently held in an attorney trust account
If there is a conflict of interest for a pro bono lawyer to represent a low income client in a “no asset” Chapter 7 bankruptcy matter if the lawyer or other lawyers in that lawyer’s firm represent a creditor of the debtor in an unrelated matter.
The Use of Listservs and the Rule on Confidentiality and the Duty to Report Misconduct of Others
RE: Public Defender seeking office of State’s Attorney
You have asked the Committee to advise whether you may, on the business card that you use as an attorney, identify yourself as a homicide detective employed by Baltimore City.
Attorney participation in a for-profit referral organization with non-attorneys (Reconsideration of Ethics Docket 05-11)
Counsel’s Use of a Third-Party Claims Processing Service to Assist in Processing Personal Injury Claims
May a Maryland attorney whose conduct occurs in Maryland, whose conduct has a predominant effect in Maryland or who is handling a matter before a tribunal in Maryland, practice with or in a District of Columbia professional corporation
May an attorney settle a claim on behalf of two clients whom that attorney cannot locate despite his best efforts to do so, and without an agreement giving the attorney sole settlement authority?
Opinion regarding potential for conflict due to federal budget action resulting in furloughs for attorneys employed by a federal agency
Whether you can describe your pursuit of an advanced law degree on your resume and business cards without violating the prohibition in the Rules regarding specialization.
Whether you have a duty to disclose what may have been fraud by your client relating to a proceeding in an immigration court.
As part of the settlement of an automobile accident claim, the insurer requires that the lawyer for the plaintiff hold harmless and indemnify both the carrier and the defendant from any claim for any of plaintiff’s medical bills, or from medical liens or workers compensation liens, arising out of the accident or the action filed by plaintiff. The question is whether this violates the Maryland Rules of Professional Conduct.