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Don't Prank Opposing Counsel

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By George Khoury, Esq. on July 02, 2018 4:08 PM

Have you ever had an opposing counsel who you just didn't care for, personally, professionally, or for any other reason? Have you ever felt compelled to play silly pranks on them in order to exact some angsty revenge for them putting you through the misery of having to work with them?

After all, if you've ever missed a planned event because opposing counsel put you in a tough spot on a joint filing, or by rejecting a brief continuance, that desire for revenge can be very real. However, being professional about your revenge and exacting it through living well and winning your case is highly advisable to pulling a childish prank.

No Fake Online Profiles

Yes, your opposing counsel would probably be more friendly if they were in a happy, loving relationship. But signing them up for a Match.com profile is just mean and liable to land you in some serious trouble, particularly when it comes to your license to practice law.

Above the Law recently covered the cautionary tale of lawyer Drew Randolph Quitschau who had gotten fed up with a longtime adversary. Quitschau did in fact sign up his opposing counsel for a Match.com profile, and more. And while he tried to deny it was him, the digital-trail was rather damning, and he eventually admitted to it. Though he may have been laughing hard when he did it, now, he surely isn't. He settled out a claim with his adversary for $100K, lost his job, and has been suspended because his actions involved moral turpitude.

Not Even Email Subscriptions

Even if you're just considering some light-hearted pranks, stop. You can't even sign up your opposing counsel for internet newsletters. No matter how badly you want them to receive a daily or weekly digest of news about some random topic that you are all but certain they have no interest in, resist the urge. It is deceitful to enter another person's email into a webform to sign them up for anything.

Being a lawyer means that pulling any sort of prank, whether childish and/or hilarious, is unprofessional. Pranks by their very nature involve deceit, which is where you start to enter the world of moral turpitude.

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