Monday Morning Answers: Week 62

Suggesting that Five for Friday might not occur every week generated strong responses!

Last week’s questions are here.  Today, the answers follow the honor roll.

Honor Roll


Question 1

Imagine you attend a CLE at which I use the following terms & phrases:

  • in connection with a representation
  • single source
  • compliance review

How many minutes into the CLE would you fall asleep?  Oops, that’s not what I meant.  What I meant was “what is the topic of the CLE?”

 I love the honesty from the various readers who answered part 1.  The longest it took anyone to fall asleep was 5 minutes.  The real answer:  Trust Accounting.

  • Funds held in connection with a representation must be held in trust; Rule 1.15A(a)
  • A trust accounting system must include a “single source” for identification of all trust accounts; Rule 1.15A(a)(4); and
  • Lawyers and law firms must submit to confidential compliance reviews of financial records.  Rule 1.15A(b).

Question 2

Do the rules allow a lawyer to make an agreement prospectively limiting the lawyer’s liability to the client for malpractice?

  • A.   Yes.
  • B.   Yes, but only if the client is independently represented in making the agreement. Rule 1.8(h)(1).
  • C.   Yes, but only if the agreement is confirmed in a writing that is signed by the client
  • D.  No.

Question 3

Attorney called me with an inquiry.  Attorney asked “can I just put him on, instruct him to tell his story, and not ask any questions?”

Given the question, it’s most likely that Attorney practices in what area of the law?

Criminal defense.  The question most likely arose after Attorney developed a reasonable belief that a criminal defense client would lie on the stand.  Rule 1.2(a) makes it clear that the decision to testify belongs to the defense client.  Rule 3.3(a)(3) states that a lawyer “may refuse to offer evidence, other than the testimony of a defendant in a criminal matter, that the lawyer reasonably believes is false.”  See, Comments 7 and 9 to Rule 3.3.

Question 4

Same facts as question 3: Attorney called me with an inquiry.  Attorney asked “can I just put him on, instruct him to tell his story, and not ask any questions?”

The “him” in Attorney’s question refers to:

  • A.   Attorney’s client
  • B.   A fact witness who will testify in for Attorney’s client
  • C.  An expert witness who will testify for Attorney’s client
  • D.   A witness who is also a former client of Attorney

Question 5

Cassie Novak is a fictional lawyer.  From 2003 thru 2008, she appeared as a senior assistant district attorney.  In 2008, she left her office (and the show) after reportedly having been disbarred for failing to disclose exculpatory evidence while prosecuting a police officer.  In 2012, she reappeared, informing everyone that she had not been disbarred, but only suspended for 3 years.

Novak is the only female assistant district attorney to appear in at least five seasons of both her show and the other shows in its franchise.  In addition, with 7 full seasons as an assistant district attorney, she is the longest-running assistant district attorney in the entire franchise.

Name the specific show in which Novak appeared.

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.