Congrats Patriots fans.
Friday’s questions are here. The answers follow the honor roll.
- Karen Allen, Esq.; Karen Allen Law
- Matthew Anderson, Pratt Vreeland Kennelly & White
- Alberto Bernabe, Professor, John Marshall Law School
- Corinne Deering, PACE Registered Paralegal®. Paul Frank & Collins
- Elizabeth Demas, Clarke Demas & Baker
- Bob Grundstein, Esq.
- Glenn Jarrett, Jarrett & Luitjens
- Keith Kasper, McCormick, Fitzpatrick, Kasper & Burchard
- Jeanne Kennedy, Queen Mum, JB Kennedy Associates
- Kevin Lumpkin, Sheehey Furlong & Behm
- Jeffrey Messina, Bergeron Paradis Fitzpatrick
- Hal Miller, First American
- Fletcher Proctor, Esq.
- Nancy Hunter Rogers, Teacher, Chamberlin Elementary School
- Robyn Sweet, CORE Registered Paralegal, Cleary Shahi & Aicher
- Jack Welch, Esq.
- Thomas Wilkinson, Jr.; Cozen O’Connor
Which is different from the others?
- A. Prospective Clients
- B. Related Clients
- C. Current Clients
- D. Former Clients
There are specific rules that deal with A, C, and D (1.18, 1.7, 1.9). The rules do not mention “related clients.”
A lawyer shall not practice in a for-profit professional corporation or association if:
- A. A non-lawyer owns any interest therein.
- B. A non-lawyer is a corporate director or officer.
- C. A non-lawyer has the right to direct or control the professional judgment of the lawyer.
- D. All of the above. See, Rule 5.4(d)
There’s a rule that prohibits a particular act. There are 4 exceptions. Per the exceptions, a lawyer may:
- pay the reasonable costs of advertisements;
- pay the usual charges of a legal service plan or a not-for-profit qualified lawyer referral service;
- pay to buy a law practice; and,
- enter into a referral agreement with another lawyer (or non-lawyer professional) that is not otherwise prohibited by the rules.
What’s the act that the rule prohibits?
- A. Sharing fees with a lawyer in another firm.
- B. Giving something of value to a person for recommending the lawyer’s services. See, Rule 7.2(b).
- C. Disbursing trust funds in reliance upon deposits that have not yet cleared.
- D. Advertisements targeted by area code.
Partner and Associate worked together on a case. Partner asked Associate to prepare a pleading. Associate did, but expressed concern that the pleading was frivolous. Partner disagreed and instructed Associate to file the pleading. Associate signed and filed the pleading.
Later, the trial court determined that the pleading was, in fact, frivolous. The trial court referred the matter to disciplinary counsel for an investigation into whether Associate’s filing of the pleading violated Rule 3.1 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
On these facts, which is most accurate?
- A. The trial court’s finding creates a rebuttable presumption that Partner & Associate violated Rule 3.1.
- B. The trial court’s finding operates to estop Partner & Associate from arguing that they did not violate Rule 3.1.
- C. Associate did not violate Rule 3.1.
- D. Associate did not violate Rule 3.1, so long as Associate acted in accordance with Partner’s reasonable resolution of an arguable question as to whether the pleading was frivolous.
See, Rule 5.2(b). Note: nothing in Vermont’s rules of disciplinary procedure create rebuttable presumptions of misconduct that lawyers must overcome. Rather, disciplinary counsel bears the burden of proving a violation by “clear and convincing evidence.” That is especially key in this question, where the standard applied by the trial court may not necessarily have been “clear and convincing.”
Little did you know that a movie renowned for math could involve law.
One of the most competent pro se litigants in movie history was a character in a film that was nominated for Best Picture in 1998. Despite having no formal education or training, Character was pretty damned competent. Here’s the script for the scene where, at his arraignment on a charge that he had assaulted a police officer, Character argued his own motion to dismiss,
- Character: There is lengthy legal precedent, your honor, going back to 1789, whereby a defendant can claim self-defense against an agent of the government, if that act is deemed a defense against tyranny, a defense of liberty.
- Prosecutor: Your honor. . .
- Character: Henry Lloyd Beecher in Proverbs from the Plymouth Pulpit, 1887 says, and I quote . . .
- Prosecutor: 1887? This is the 20th century, your honor.
- Character: Excuse me, excuse me.
- Prosecutor: You’re making a mockery of the Court!
- Character: I’m afforded the right to speak in my own defense, sir, by the Constitution of the United States. This is the same document that guarantees my liberty.
- Prosecutor: Hey, don’t tell me about the Constitution of the United States.
- Character: Now, liberty, in case you’ve forgotten, is the soul’s rights to breath. And when it cannot take a long breath, laws are girded too tight. Without liberty, man is a syncope.
- Prosecutor: Man is a what?
- Character: Ibid, your honor.
- Judge: Son, my turn. I’ve been sitting here 10 minutes now looking over this rap sheet of yours. I just can’t believe it. June ’93, Assault. September ’93, Assault. Grand Theft Auto in February ’94, where you apparently defended yourself by citing Free Property Rights of Horse and Carriage from 1798. January ’95, Impersonating an Officer, Mayhem, Resisting. All overturned. I’m also aware that you’ve been through several foster homes. The State removed you from three due to physical abuse. You know, another judge might care, but you hit a cop. You’re going in. Motion to dismiss is denied. $50,000 bail.
- Character: Thank you your honor.
Character didn’t post bail, but didn’t stay in long either. Soon after the arraignment, he was released to the supervision of an MIT professor who had been at the arraignment. The professor had attended after having been intrigued by Character’s math skills. In particular, the professor was impressed with Character’s ability to solve a proof that the professor’s students couldn’t.
Character’s conditions of release required him to attend therapy sessions with the professor’s college roommate, a psychology teacher at a local community college. In 1998, the actor who played the psychology teacher won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Name the movie.
GOOD WILL HUNTING
Hint: the theme of #fiveforfriday #75 was Pudge Fisk’s home run in Game 6 of the 1975 World Series. In the movie that is the subject of today’s question 5, Character’s court-ordered therapist/psychologist recounts giving up his ticket to Game 6 because he had “to go see about a girl.”