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LLM Law Outlines Professional Responsibility Outlines

Control Of Quality Outline

Updated Control Of Quality Notes

Professional Responsibility Outlines

Professional Responsibility

Approximately 95 pages

Professional Responsibility with Gillers Autumn 2018
Based on the textbook: Stephen Gillers, Regulation of Lawyers: Problems of Law and Ethics (11th Ed. 2018)...

The following is a more accessible plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Professional Responsibility Outlines. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

09. Control of Quality

Reducing the likelihood of Professional Failure


A. Admission to the Bar

  • If a lawyer does legal work where she is not admitted, she risks violating rules against the unauthorized practice of law (UPL), which can be a crime in some places. Unauthorised presence may even occur through virtual as technology develops more changes likely to occur

  1. Geographical exclusion: previously state may prohibit a lawyer who live outside of the state to join its bar now a resident of any state can seek admission to the bar of any state

  2. Geographical restriction: Virginia granted motion admission to lawyers admitted elsewhere but only if they lived and worked full time in Virginia

    • motion admission = gain admission to a bar without taking its bar examination if they have practiced for 5 of the prior 7 years/ 3 of the prior 5 years

  3. Education and examination: despite not a good way to test knowledge or ability to practice law, but challenges on the Bar examinations have been unsuccessful

  4. Character Inquiries: inspect applicant’s mental health, honesty & integrity (academic behaviour, criminal conduct), personal life (esp. financial probity), and support for the Constitution

    • Against: how applicant behaved in the past doesn’t necessary suggest how he will behave as a lawyer

    • For: clients reasonably believe that the state has deemed the lawyer worthy of their trust

  • “The Racist Bar Applicant” (506)

  • MH is avowed racist, and he was denied admission to the Bar

  • Hard to predict from M.H.’s view whether he will violate a disciplinary rule

  • What if M.H. had adopted and expressed his views after he had already been admitted to the bar? Do you think he should be removed or otherwise disciplined for them?

    • Conduct that keep you out the bar would not necessarily get you kicked out of the profession

    • But also, lawyers gave up some rights (e.g. freedom of speech) when they enter the profession

  • How about an applicant who believes and has argued that homosexuality is a sin and that gay men and lesbians should be imprisoned?

  • “Borrowing from the Moot Court Board” (506)

  • In re Mustafa (1993)

  • Facts: JM wrote cheques to himself for personal expenses from school’s moot court program which he co-chaired. It was found out and JM was turned in, while he confessed to the dean the same day. Committee found that JM always intended to repay the sums taken from the fund and had made full restitution before there was any threatened action by the law school. Committee recommended he be admitted

  • Law: in order to gain admission to the Bar, an applicant must demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that he possesses good moral character and general fitness to practice law at the time of admission JM failed to establish that he had good moral character required for admission to the Bar, application denied

  • While criminal conduct has traditionally excluded Bar applicants, a felony conviction automatically disqualifies an applicant in only 8 jurisdictions. May consider things like nature of crime, how long ago it was, conduct of applicant since then

  • How should the fact that JM’s conduct occurred while he was in law school be weighed?

    • JM should be old enough to know, know the legal consequences

  • Should he be admitted without delay? If with a delay, then for how long? Never?

    • Whether motivation matters: firm partners and profs know why he took the money out – e.g. for a sick relative/ friend who had no money to pay bail/ friend about to be evicted from home. but any lawyer who did this would be disbarred, regardless of their motives

    • Whether candor given to the letter writers: how much money he took, how many % did he take from the program, background of JM, whether it is a one-off event or trend

  • If you think J.M. should be admitted (with or without a delay), what if any burden of proof should he have to satisfy the court that he does not present a risk?

    • Lawyers are often fiduciaries for their client’s money

    • Will he do it again in the future?

    • Is JM going to a big firm which have system in place to protect against lawyer stealing client’s money?

  • Note: real case JM later called to CA but stole money from client disbarred

  • How do we use past behaviour to decide on future conduct?

Good Moral Character - From In Re Glass (508)

  • Facts: After discovery of his many misdeeds (dishonest and fabricate material for more than 40 articles), Glass ended his journalism career and switched to law. Glass eventually applied to the California Bar and was admitted by Review Department of the State Bar Court.

  • Law: Good moral character includes

    • “qualities of honesty, fairness, candor, trustworthiness, observance of fiduciary responsibility, respect for and obedience to the law, and respect for the rights of others and the judicial process”

    • “Persons of good character . . . do not commit acts or crimes involving moral turpitude — a concept that embraces a wide range of deceitful and depraved behavior.”

    • A lawyer’s good moral character is essential for the protection of clients and for the proper functioning of the judicial system itself…

    • courts are required to evaluate the seriousness of past misconduct and assess the risk that the applicant will if admitted behave similarly in how she treats clients

  • Analysis: Glass fabricated material to hurt others, intentionally and repeatedly delude the public, violated ethical structures, reprehensible – took place while he was pursuing a law degree and license to practice law, directed his effort at advancing his own career and financial and emotional well-being. Court duty is to protect the public and maintain the integrity and high standards of the profession

  • California Court held: applicant failed to establish his rehabilitation and current fitness.

    • The risk should be borne by the applicant and not the general public

  • Deborah Rhode criticized: poor signal to applicants who wish to turn their lives around. The question is not only whether Glass will favor his...

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