Five for Friday #177

“Another Friday night
There’s a line of cars leaving
Home team’s got an out of towner
Me, I’m sitting on the hood of mine drinking
Just a parking lot down and outer.”

Eric Church – Round Here Buzz


Image result for eric church images

Welcome to #177!

The first part of today’s intro is for my readers who are old school rap fans.

I had a moment yesterday.  A moment that lasted for about 7 miles.

My two most recent blog posts were:

Last night, I ran after work.  It was a fantastic long run in perfect running weather.  Within the first mile, I started thinking about how to tie this intro to the number “177.”  With the two most recent posts fresh in my mind, my thoughts drifted to Dre, Snoop, and Deep Cover. I sang as I ran, trying my best to figure out how in the world I could tie the song to legal ethics.  But, also, with a nagging feeling that something wasn’t right.  The words in my head sounded off, like I had them wrong. 

Around mile 8, it hit me: I was letting this week’s number mess with my brain.  It’s not 177, but 187 that’s the operative number in Deep Cover.  Phew!  It’d have been quite the stretch to work that into a legal ethics blog.  Relieved, I soared through the final two miles.

Anyhow, thank you to all who submitted stories in response to my Speechless post a few weeks ago.  I received around a dozen, most of which included a disclaimer “you can’t post this.”  True enough! It’s stunning how much R-rated stuff goes on in depositions and hearings!  Of those fit to print, two of my favorites:

  • the lawyer who, while sitting at counsel table during opposing counsel’s opening statement, managed to leap out of his seat and catch opposing counsel as opposing counsel fainted, saving opposing counsel’s head from crashing into the courtroom floor.
  • the lawyer who, while giving an opening argument, couldn’t figure out why jurors had such strange looks on their faces.  Eventually, the flummoxed lawyer realized that he was the only person present who hadn’t yet noticed that a crow was flying around the courtroom.

A life saver and a lawyer incredibly focused on behalf of his client!  Professionalism, civility, and competence.  That’s the Vermont bar at its best!

Onto the quiz!

ps: on the subject of competence, kudos to the lawyer who responded to yesterday’s post by pointing out that the D.C. lawyer who requested “the honor” of disbarment by citing to Public Enemy was, truly, a Rebel Without a Pause. As I told her, best comment ever on this blog.


  • None.  Open book, open search engine, text/phone/email-a-friend.
  • Exception – but one that is loosely enforced – #5 (“loosely” = “aspirational”)
  • Unless stated otherwise, the Vermont Rules of Professional Conduct apply
  • Team entries welcome, creative team names even more welcome.
  • E-mail answers to
  • I’ll post the answers & Honor Roll on Monday
  • Please don’t use the “comment” feature to post your answers
  • Please consider sharing the quiz with friends & colleagues
  • Please consider sharing the quiz on social media.  Hashtag it – #fiveforfriday

Question 1

Lawyer called me with an inquiry. I listened, then said “per the rule, the duty kicks in when you have knowledge of a violation that raises a substantial question as to honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness.”

What duty? The duty:

  • A.  to withdraw from representing a client provided false evidence to a court.
  • B.  to self-report to disciplinary counsel.
  • C.  to report another lawyer to the appropriate professional authority.
  • D.  to “go up the ladder” and report a constituent’s misconduct to a higher authority within the organization that the lawyer represents.

Question 2

Lawyer and Client agree to a fee that, on its face, is unreasonable.  Which is most accurate?

  • A. The client agreed to the fee, ergo no violation.
  • B. It’s only a violation if Lawyer actually charges the fee.
  • C. The agreement violates the applicable rule.
  • D. Vermont is one of two states whose rules do not address legal fees.

Question 3

If a lawyer, the lawyer’s client, or a witness has offered material evidence and the lawyer comes to know of its falsity, the lawyer shall ____________________________.

  • A.  withdraw.
  • B.  advise the client to disclose to the tribunal, but abide by the client’s decision whether to do so.
  • C.  A and B.
  • D.  take reasonable remedial measures, including, if necessary, disclosure to the tribunal.

Question 4

When it comes to imputed conflicts of interest, which group is treated differently than the other two?

  • A. Current or former government lawyers.
  • B. Lawyers who, under the auspices of programs sponsored by a nonprofit or court, provides short-term legal services without expectation by lawyer or client of continuing representation.
  • C.  Lawyers who change firms and who, while at their old firm, participated personally and substantially in a matter in which their new firm represents a client whose interests are materially adverse to the interests of the client represented by the old firm.
  • D.  They’re all treated the same.

Question 5

Shout out to Keith Roberts!

  1. If you noticed today’s opening lyrics, the verse is about high school football
  2. Rule 8.4(b) prohibits lawyers from engaging in conduct that involves a serious crime

Question: yesterday, a real-life lawyer was sentenced to 1 month in prison for his role in a college admissions scandal (one that also ensared Aunt Becky of Full House fame).  The code name for the FBI’s investigation into the scandal is also the name of a movie about high school football.

Name the movie/code name of the scandal.