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Recently in Professional Responsibility Category

'Disclose More Evidence,' Tennessee Tells Prosecutors

Everybody knows prosecutors have a duty to disclose exculpatory evidence, but reasonable minds may differ about how much.

That is the sticking point in a debate that is heating up in Tennessee. In a new ethics opinion, the state Board of Professional Responsibility says prosecutors have a higher duty to disclose than required by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In Brady v. Maryland, the High Court said they must disclose "material" evidence. Tennessee says they should produce "all" evidence that favors a defendant and then some.

So You CAN Follow Opposing Counsel by Drone

Drone law has the potential to be a real thing, but it wasn't supposed to happen like this.

According to reports, one attorney said an opposing counsel said he was following her by remote drones. Triple hearsay, we know.

In the court of public opinion that might fly. But, when she sued him for stalking in a court of law, her case didn't really get off the ground.

When Waiving Attorney-Client Privilege Is Not a Good Idea

When President Donald Trump waived the attorney-client privilege for tapes Michael Cohen made of their conversations, the legal community gasped -- but not for the reasons everybody else did.

Everyone knew the tapes, including a discussion to pay hush money to a former Playboy model, could become Trump's Watergate. They could be his Waterloo. They could be...

Wait, lawyers exclaimed. Did the President say "cash?"

Your Client's Thinking About Divorce, But ...

A client said he was thinking about a divorce, but he wasn't sure.

"I'm confused because I still love my wife," he told the lawyer.

Sensitive to the client's feelings, the attorney asked what happened to their relationship. The straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak, was when the wife pinned the man against the garage wall with the family car.

True story, and yes, the lawyer recommended divorce -- and a restraining order. As fishermen say, sometimes you have to know when to cut bait.

Got Pregnant to Delay Trial? No, You Didn't Just Say That

Paul T. Reid was not the pregnant lawyer in the courtroom, but he definitely left a hearing in an uncomfortable pregnant moment.

He had objected to a continuance requested by opposing counsel, who said she needed time off for her pregnancy. She asked for eight weeks, and the judge gave it to her.

But it sounded to some like the BigLaw partner accused the small-firm attorney of using her pregnancy to delay trial. He did NOT just say that, did he?

When Should a Lawyer Flip on a Client?

Everybody's asking if Michael Cohen will flip, when perhaps the question should be will he get disbarred?

Sure, Cohen is more concerned about a jail sentence than his law license. But for most attorneys, that's not important right now.

Lawyers -- especially those who don't stand a chance at a presidential pardon -- ought to think about the real world ramifications of flipping on their clients.

Why Are Toddlers Going to Court Unrepresented?

Children are arrested all the time, many going to court with appointed lawyers for all those crimes that kids commit.

Immigrant children -- those separated from their parents in recent "zero tolerance" crackdowns -- don't get appointed counsel. More than 2,000 kids -- even toddlers as young as three years old -- are going to court alone.

Because they've done nothing criminal, they have no constitutional right to an attorney. Nobody really knows where they will be next, but everybody knows it's wrong.

Another Reason Not Buy Drugs From Clients

There are at least three good reasons not to buy drugs from a client.

One, it creates an insurmountable conflict of interest if you are both arrested on drug charges. Two, even if only your client is busted, the price for your drugs will triple.

And three, your name might end up in a blog post about why you shouldn't buy drugs from clients. It's not really funny, but reality can be hard to deal with and sometimes you just have to laugh.

If you've had any contact with the outside world in the last week, you've likely heard about what's going on down along our southern border.

While immigration enforcement is often a controversial and divisive subject, the separation of children from their families when crossing the border seeking asylum has stoked outrage from both sides of the partisan divide. Many lawyers out there might be wondering what exactly they can do to help. Below, you can find a short list of things lawyers can actually do.

The Perils of Copying and Pasting Without Attribution

Copy and paste.

It's such a common practice, it's practically one word. Lawyers do it all the time, too.

But you can't copy other people's words without attribution. It's not just about copyright and plagiarism; it's about embarrassment.