Ethics Law aka The Law of Lawyering

November 25, 2018

Ethics Law aka The Law of Lawyering

ethics law

Mark Rubin

In part my law practice involves ethics law. The term fairly describes the practice area, but Law of Lawyering more completely defines it. Simply, I focus on issues which arise for lawyers as they practice law.*

The Rules of Professional Conduct govern lawyer conduct. The American Bar Association published Model Rules of Professional Conduct in the 1980s, to replace its Code of Professional Responsibility. Arizona had adopted the Code in 1970 and replaced it with its version of the ABA Model Rules in 1985. (For an excellent history of lawyer ethics in Arizona read The Short History of Arizona Legal Ethics by Keith Swisher.)

In 2003 Arizona adopted a rewritten version

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Professional Ethics for Attorneys

May 29, 2017

Professional Ethics for Attorneys

For many years the second quarter—April, May, and June—finds me talking. Yes, yes, I talk always, but the second quarter has me talking in public, mostly about professional ethics for attorneys. The State Bar of Arizona requires 15 hours of continuing legal education (CLE) between July 1 and June 30, and three of those hours must have ethics as their primary subject.

For reasons I don’t readily comprehend, many Arizona attorneys struggle to obtain their three hours of ethics. Whither, I—an attorney who devotes about one-third of his practice to ethics and related matters—get lots of opportunities to talk. My talking comprises some part of three hours, shared with one or more fellow panelists and, we

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Trump Appointees, Ethics, and a Tax Break

January 2, 2017

Trump Appointees, Ethics, and a Tax Break.

My law practice involves conflicts of interest. No, not because I allow them; instead, it’s on account of the fact that I do and have done legal ethics matters for almost 30 years, representing attorneys in discipline and professionalism matters, and suing and represent them in legal malpractice cases.

Federal government appointments and I don’t mix, but the principles associated with attorney conflicts and governmental conflicts differ not at all. Doing someone else’s bidding mandates that you focus only on that “client,” whether it’s an individual, a corporation, or the United States of America. With that in mind, I’ve been following with interest the staffing of the Trump Administration.

The people Donald Trump

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More Reasons to Vote for Laura Conover

July 12, 2020

More Reasons to Vote for Laura Conover

Conover endorsement LB

Laura Conover

Hi there. I’m Leigh, and I’m visiting here. I share Mark’s views about the reasons why we need changes at the Pima County Attorney’s Office. I have some more, too.

In our tough economic times, we need a County Attorney who will better steward the substantial sum of money we spend in our community to prosecute criminals. Further, we need someone who will insist on running an office which focuses on justice, as opposed to convictions. Laura Conover meets these requirements.

The Office of the County Attorney as well as the Offices of the Public and Legal Defender serve the people of Pima County in many ways, not least of which

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Mark Rubin and The Best Lawyers in America©

August 16, 2019

Mark Rubin and The Best Lawyers in America©

best lawyers

Mark Rubin

I’m as pleased as Punch because I’m listed in the 26th edition of The Best Lawyers in America©. Per Best Lawyers®, it recognizes roughly 60,000 U.S. lawyers, from among more than 1.3 million active lawyers. One in 20 or so!

Best Lawyers® listed me for my Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law practice. Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law, aka the Law of Lawyering, represents a small part of my practice—which focuses most heavily on business, real estate, elder law, and fiduciary work—but it’s a part of my practice I’m very proud of. (For more on what this area of law is all about, read Ethics Law

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Hurrah, Hurrah: Rubin & Bernstein PLLC

May 24, 2018

Hurrah, Hurrah: Rubin & Bernstein PLLC

We’re Here … Finally!

382 S. Convent Ave.

382 S. Convent Ave.

Well, gentle readers, you’ve certainly gotten teasers, here and here. (Candidly, I thought there were more.) Rubin & Bernstein PLLC is, like, the real deal! As of May 29th we’re located at 382 S. Convent Ave., with an annex office at 307 S. Convent. The picture shows 382, and we’ve got lots of parking. (Moving today, May 24!)

The Lawyers

Leigh Bernstein—my partner—devotes herself to the needs of elderly people and those who surround them in their later years. She provides estate planning services for people of all ages. Her practice also includes guardian/conservatorship cases involving people with dementia or mental illness. She handles trusts

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Confidentiality and Hannity the Client

April 17, 2018

Confidentiality and Hannity the Client

New York’s version of ER 1.6 of the Rules of Professional Conduct got shredded yesterday. Oh well … but for the fact that confidentiality represents a core aspect of the attorney-client relationship.

Some background might be helpful. Search warrants, executed last Monday, generated a bunch of material from Michael Cohen. He’s an attorney who works for President Donald J. Trump. And Everett Broidy. And one more client, Sean Hannity.

The government and Judge Kimba Wood needed to know who Mr. Cohen represented. Why? To determine the scope of the claimed attorney-client privilege. The privilege only applies to communications between Mr. Cohen and his clients; whither, the need to know the identity of

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Search Warrants, Confidentiality, and More

April 15, 2018

Search Warrants, Confidentiality, and More

That Client

That Client

In Donald J. Trump, Goner I promised some “basic facts about attorney-client privilege and attorney confidentiality issues.”* The promise grew out of the extraordinary search warrants directed to premises controlled by Michael Cohen, an attorney who does work for President Donald J. Trump.

Extraordinary search warrants? Yes. Mr. Cohen does have a license to practice law, and the warrants relate broadly to that client of his I mentioned previously.

Judges issue search warrants. Routinely.** Judges reject warrant requests rarely and, only slightly more often, they will modify them. So, the fact that warrants issued does not, alone, make them extraordinary.

So, why extraordinary? Mr. Cohen’s law license, and that client I mentioned.

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Donald J. Trump, Goner

April 13, 2018

Donald J. Trump, Goner

donald j. trump, goner

I have a PredictIt account. PredictIt offers legalized betting on political events. Fun it is, and it’s legal because smart people study the predictive power of crowds.

Whether “Donald Trump shall be president of the United States at 11:59:59 p.m. (ET) on December 31, 2018” is the bet, and I have the No position. (The rules are very precise.) If I cashed out now my profit pays for most of a night on the town with LB, which includes drinks, shared fish and chips, tax and the large tip at our neighborhood bar. And If I hang on and he’s gone by the time the ball drops next in Times Square I’ll be the smiling guy,

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Confidentiality, Attorneys and Prospective Clients           

March 27, 2018

Confidentiality, Attorneys and Prospective Clients

confidentiality

Mark Rubin

On August 17, 2014 I posted Professional Responsibility; Confidentiality. Confidentiality represents a core part of the attorney-client relationship. Too often, unfortunately, we—yes, attorneys—ignore it or don’t understand it.

Plainly and simply: matters belong to clients, and not to their attorneys.* I work for you. The Rules of Professional Conduct and other sources set standards for me. And one of those standards—set forth in E(thical) R(ule) 1.6—tells me I can’t reveal “information relating to the representation of a client” without your consent. (There are several exceptions. They’re discussed in the 2014 piece, and not relevant here.)

“Information relating to the representation of the client” includes the very fact that an attorney-client relationship

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