Thursday, October 27, 2011

Risk News & Updates: Conflicts, Advance Waivers & More

  • Firm’s Agreement With Opposing Party Creates Unconsentable Conflict – "The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that an agreement between an opposing party and a law firm which called for the firm to aggregate its clients’ claims created a unconsentable conflict ... This opinion demonstrates how a conflict of interest can help form the basis for certain civil claims."
  • Loyalty under Attack: The Pernicious Prospective Waiver[h/t Legal Ethics Forum] – Lawrence J. Fox, a partner with Drinker Biddle offers provocative words against advance waivers and informed client consent: "Can one imagine a more Orwellian definition of informed consent? You’ve given informed consent because you are a sentient being who knows he or she is uninformed. The entire argument makes a mockery of the rules, in effect saying, not that these lawyers have obtained 'informed consent' but that these lawyers are above the rules, that when one deals in the rarified air of AmLaw 100 law firms and their clients, there are no ethical boundaries."
  • "Inexcusable" ABS delay could cost [UK] law firms – "The 'inexcusable delay' in enabling the Solicitors Regulatory Authority to start licensing alternative business structures (ABSs) could make private investors think twice about entering the legal sector, the head of corporate finance at accountants Baker Tilly said this week."

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