Earlier this week, the Ohio Supreme Court Board of Professional Conduct issued 2 new Advisory Opinions on lawyers participation in lawyer referral services and law students with legal intern certificates :
1) 2016-3: "SYLLABUS: A lawyer should carefully evaluate a lawyer referral service, or similar online model, to ensure that it complies with the Rules of Professional Conduct and the ethical requirements of the lawyer. Where the service meets all of the elements of a lawyer referral service, a participating lawyer must ensure that the service complies with Gov.Bar R. XVI, in order for the lawyer to comply with the Rules of Professional Conduct. A lawyer’s participation in an online, nonlawyer-owned legal referral service, where the lawyer is required to pay a “marketing fee” to a nonlawyer for each service completed for a client, is unethical. A lawyer must ensure that the lawyer referral service does not interfere with the lawyer’s independent professional judgment under Prof.Cond.R. 5.4. A lawyer is responsible for the conduct of the nonlawyers of the service (Prof.Cond.R. 5.3), as well as the advertising and marketing provided by the service on the lawyer’s behalf. Prof.Cond.R. 7.1, 7.2, 7.3. Additionally, a fee structure that is tied specifically to individual client representations that a lawyer completes or to the percentage of a fee is not permissible, unless the lawyer referral service is registered with the Supreme Court of Ohio. Prof.Cond.R. 1.5, Gov.Bar R. XVI."
2) 2016-4: "SYLLABUS: A law student holding a legal intern certificate, issued by the Supreme Court under Gov.Bar R. II, is engaged in the limited practice of law and bound by the Rules of Professional Conduct. Conflicts of interest arising out of a legal intern’s current or former representation of clients are imputed to all lawyers in a private law firm when the intern is employed simultaneously as a law firm clerk. The conflicts of a former legal intern, newly employed as a lawyer, are not imputed to the lawyers in a law firm, but necessitate the screening of the lawyer from any matter he or she had substantial responsibility."
The Ohio Supreme Court has just adopted new Probate Court forms for alcohol and drug treatment and public notice waivers for name changes. According to the Court, new Forms 26.0-26.14 were designed for the following situations:
"A person petitioning the court for the involuntary treatment can now submit forms to demonstrate that someone is suffering from alcohol or other drug abuse; represents a danger to himself or herself, family members, or others; and would likely benefit from treatment. The forms also include a physician evaluation, a form for emergency commitment if a respondent refuses to undergo the required evaluation, and various hearing notices."
"The Court also approved a new probate form to allow a person seeking a name change to do so without publishing it in a newspaper if his or her personal safety would be threatened by its publication. Applicants could include domestic violence victims or those under orders of protection. Form 21.6 reflects a process provided in R.C. 2717.01(A)(4), which requires notice of the name change in a general circulation newspaper. An applicant now can use the form to ask the probate court to waive the requirement."
The new forms will be added to the existing Standard Probate Forms in the Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio.
For more information, read the Ohio Supreme Court's New Release.
The Cleveland Public Library
is hosting a program on "Patents and Trademarks: Get the Information You Need to Protect Your Intellectual Property"
Tuesday, May 10 • 10:00 a.m. -5:45 p.m.
Main Library, Louis Stokes Wing Auditorium
"United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) staff members Michael Hydorn and Robert Berry will explain patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. Presentations in the afternoon by staff from the USPTO Midwest Regional Office in Detroit, the Department of Justice for the Northern District of Ohio, Customs and Border Patrol, and the Federal Trade Commission will discuss their agencies’ work in assisting people in safeguarding their inventions, designs, and products. Space is limited; pre-registration is required."
Register at here
or call (216) 623-2932.
The Ohio Supreme Court Board of Professional Conduct has issued its second Advisory Opinion (2016-2) of the year. This Advisory Opinion covers a lawyer’s duty to report unprivileged knowledge of another lawyer’s misconduct. The Syllabus of the Opinion states that:
"A lawyer is required under Prof.Cond.R. 8.3 to report any unprivileged knowledge of a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct to the Office of Disciplinary Counsel or a bar association's certified grievance committee. A lawyer shall not reveal privileged information relating to the representation of a client, including information protected by the attorney-client privilege. Prof.Cond.R. 1.6(a). A lawyer may reveal information relating to the representation of a client if the client gives informed consent under Prof.Cond.R. 1.6."
This Opinion replaces Opinion 90-01.
The Ohio Supreme Court provides all of its Advisory Opinions on this page, with various finding tools for accessing them.
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