Prof Resp: Traversing Ethical Minefield (Comisky,H)
W 4:30PM - 6:30PM
Tanenbaum Hall 112
Professional responsibility issues are part of the fabric of the practice of law. For example, you receive a key document inadvertently produced by your opponent in a case. What do you do? Or, a conflict is created when your best corporate client asks you to negotiate a very significant deal with a company you are suing on behalf of another client. Can you go forward with the transaction? Each issue must be addressed by first examining the particular facts and circumstances. Then, the professional responsibility concerns must be identified. The applicable rules must be read, as well as ethics opinions, case law and commentary, to best answer the ethical dilemma. This course focuses on the facts and circumstances by utilizing a variety of hypothetical fact patterns to address particular professional responsibility issues in both litigation and transactional practices. Given the small class format, students will work in teams to answer the questions posed by the hypothetical problems. As the answers may vary from state-to-state, students will be encouraged to apply the rules of the jurisdiction in which they plan to practice, in addition to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, to their analyses. Class participation is essential to properly explore these issues. We will be using the fourth edition of Martyn and Fox, “Traversing the Ethical Minefield – Problems, Law and Professional Responsibility” and its accompanying supplement, Martyn, Fox and Wendel, “The Law Governing Lawyers, National Rules, Standards, Statutes, and State Lawyer Codes.” Students will be graded based on an open book examination (60% of grade), an ethics opinion (20% of grade) and class participation (20% of grade). This seminar satisfies the Law School's professional responsibility requirement.
Professional Responsibility and Ethics
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate an understanding of how the law affects, and is affected by, the individual course topic; Perform legal analysis in the context of the individual course topic; Communicate effectively on the legal and other aspects of the individual course topic; Demonstrate the ability to use other disciplines to analyze legal issues relevant to the individual course topic, including economics, philosophy, and sociology, as appropriate.
"The Law Governing Lawyers, National Rules, Standards, Statutes, and State Lawyer Codes" by Martyn, Fox and Wendel