||May an attorney represent the next of kin in opposing the probate of the will which the attorney had prepared and witnessed?
||May an attorney-administrator settle a wrongful death claim and continue as
attorney and fiduciary where he feels a case cannot be proven, but heirs
||May an attorney charge in excess of a state statutory fee?
||May one or more attorneys organize a Professional Service Corporation
under state statutes and adopt a profit-sharing or other retirement plan for
attorneys and other employees?
||May the name of a deceased partner be retained in a firm name where the
date of birth and death of deceased partner is shown? *Issued: May 1963
||May an attorney purchase an income tax refund from a client for whom he prepared the tax return at ninety percent of face value where funds for this are advanced by another client who receives sixty percent of the profit with the attorney retaining forty percent as his fee? *Issued: May 1963
||A father and his son, both licensed attorneys at law, are associated in their practice of law in the same office. The father files petition on behalf of an heir at law to have the son appointed administrator of an estate, with the father as attorney for the administrator. Is it ethical for the father to charge a fee as attorney in such case? A father and his son, both licensed attorneys at law, are partners in the practice of law in the same office. The son is appointed administrator of the estate of a decedent. The father is named attorney for the estate. Is it ethical for any fee at all to be charged as attorney in such case? Is it ethical for one partner in a law firm to be named as administrator,
executor or trustee and the other partner represent him as attorney and
receive a fee as attorney, with both partners sharing the commissions of the
administrator, executor or trustee, and the fees as attorney? A law firm has its secretary appointed as personal representative of a
decedent’s estate, and the law firm represents the personal representative as
attorney. Is this an ethical arrangement?
||May a County Court Probate Commissioner appear to represent a client in a
routine probate proceeding before the probate division of the County Court
over which he occasionally presides as Judge Pro Tempore?
| KBA E-017
||May the partner of the city attorney who serves as police court prosecutor
defend a criminal action in that court?
||May a Circuit Judge who has not been reelected to office participate as an
attorney in a case which had been filed in his court while he was Circuit
Judge, but he was not called upon to pass on the merits of the case, but only
on perfunctory motions not concerning the merits of the action?
||May a building and loan association refuse to accept a title opinion from
an attorney other than their own without their attorney aiding and abetting
the unauthorized practice of law where both parties agree to the dual
||May an attorney represent a building and loan association where the
association requires an applicant for a real estate loan to pay an attorney’s
fee to an attorney he has not employed and does not know?
||When an attorney represents a building and loan association and prepares a defective title which was paid for by an applicant at the request of the association, is the attorney responsible primarily to the association? Is the attorney in violation of Canons 6 and 35?
||May an attorney regularly employed by a title insurance company examine
titles where the applicant at a lending agency must obtain insurance from
this title company with the attorney examining the title in order to obtain
financing and not violate the provisions of Canons 6 and 35 and aid in the unauthorized practice of law?
||May a Professional Service Corporation practice law where attorneys are the incorporators and practice law while employees of the corporation?
||Should an attorney, any of his partners, or associates, practice before any court, quasi-judicial body or administrative agency, where the appointment or approval of appointment of any member of that court, quasi-judicial body or administrative agency is vested in any governmental office held by the
attorney or any governmental commission of which the attorney is a member?
||In an automobile accident case with suit pending and both the plaintiff and defendant represented by counsel, may the insurance carrier for the
defendant negotiate a settlement of the claim which is the subject of the
pending litigation with the attorney for the plaintiff without the knowledge
and consent of the attorney for the defendant and the insurance carrier?
||May an attorney accept an appointment to the State Board of Tax Appeals when he will often engage in state tax and probate practice while sitting on
the State Board?
||May a city prosecutor, a county attorney, or any other city, county, or state officer charged with the prosecution of criminal offenses represent
defendants in criminal cases in court other than those in which they
regularly practice as prosecutor?
||May an attorney represent, as an “executing agent and attorney in fact”, a fidelity and surety company which is engaged in the business of executing financial responsibility bonds and court appearance bonds? May an attorney “personally” act as surety on a bond? Does a judge of a minor court have the right to pass judgment on the ethical conduct of a member of the Bar? Does a city judge have authority to suspend an attorney in the city police court?
||Where a member of a state board or a state administrative body is a member of a law partnership, may the other members of the partnership properly and
ethically represent clients in proceedings before the board or administrative
body? May the partners other than the member of the administrative agency
represent a party to appeal from a decision of such an agency?
||May an attorney engaged in extensive tax work mail to his clients
information work sheets to aid in the preparation and filing of income tax returns?
||May an assistant county attorney or the county attorney be a partner in a law firm with another attorney, who appears before the zoning commission, for which the county attorney and his assistants are the legal advisors? Would the answer be different if the attorney, who appears before the zoning commission, merely shares office space with the county attorney or the assistant county attorney? May an attorney, who is county judge pro tem on most occasions when the county judge is not in town, appear before the fiscal court, which includes the county judge, for approval of a previously approved zoning change by
the zoning commission? Would the answer be the same if the attorney was requesting a reversal of the zoning commission’s decision? May an attorney who has the city manager’s name on his door and rents space to him appear before the zoning commission?
||An attorney accepting a governmental position must use caution in
notifying clients of his inability to represent them, and he may be a member
of a firm provided his name is not used for advertising.
||A mortgage company insists that all real estate closing in which it is the
lending institution be held at its office; that the mortgage, note, closing statement and similar documents be prepared by secretaries employed by
it. It requires the closing attorney, normally the same party who does most of its work, to pay the mortgage company twenty dollars per loan closed to compensate it for the services thus supplied, in effect the time and effort of the secretaries and the use of its facilities. The attorney, of course, reviews all the documents prepared and places his “prepared by” stamp on the documents requiring such. From the attorney’s standing, we will assume that the services performed by the secretaries are a convenience to him and worth the amount being paid. Assume the same factual situation as in Question 1, except that the payment for the services applied might vary depending on the size of the loan or the paper work involved. Assume the same factual situation as in Question 1, except that the payment
is a fixed percentage of the attorney’s fee in each situation. Assume the same factual situations, except that the attorney pays the secretarial help directly.
||May an attorney use the title “Doctor” in connection with his legal cards,
letterheads, etc., where he holds a Juris Doctor degree?
||May an attorney who represented a corporation and was an officer of the corporation, which transferred its assets to a successor corporation, the transaction handled to a large extent by such attorney, represent the
successor corporation in litigation between the successor corporation and the prior owner of the business concern concerning issues relating to the transfer of the assets?
||May an elected county attorney represent an employer in connection with a
||May an attorney who defends persons accused of crimes in circuit court share an office and secretary with a Commonwealth Attorney?
||May an attorney representing a party before a Planning and Zoning Board ethically appear in subsequent proceedings at appellate levels undertaking to sustain the action of the administrative body where the action of the administrative body is consistent with the original representation of the attorney?
||May an attorney representing a credit union suggest to a debtor that he file a petition under the “wage-earner” plan of federal bankruptcy act and accept employment to file petition if debtor decides to file petition?
||May a new County Attorney represent a former client in a criminal and civil case arising out of alleged acts committed before he took office in his county when there has been a change of venue by agreement?
||May an attorney represent an accident victim in a tort claim where an associate of his firm witnessed the accident along with other persons, and persons other than the associate will be called as witnesses?
||May an attorney appear on a commercially sponsored radio program financed by a real estate firm in a public service context to discuss various phases of real estate work and legal problems involved in real estate transactions?
||May an attorney for a claimant’s insurance carrier contact an uninsured motorist who takes no action to employ counsel for his cooperation in the litigation if he notifies him he should seek counsel of his own choice and where the tortfeasor has “uninsured motorist” coverage in his automobile insurance policy?
||May an attorney divide legal fees with a referring attorney where the latter performs no legal service and assumes no responsibility?
||May a County Attorney who is by virtue of his office designated president of a holding corporation which issued bonds for construction of a nursing
home, but does not participate in its operation, represent a client with a claim against the nursing home?
||When a lawyer's firm represents the Board of Trustees of a college, should the lawyer accept an appointment as trustee of the college?
||May a Judge, elected or appointed, or a Trial Commissioner, ethically represent defendants in criminal cases in a court of criminal jurisdiction? May any Commonwealth Attorney, County Attorney, Prosecuting Attorney of Police Court, or any assistant of any of them, ethically represent defendants in criminal cases in any court of criminal jurisdiction? May a Probate Commissioner practice in the probate division, or in any case on appeal from that division, or in any case involving settlement of an estate or a fiduciary’s account? May a State Legislator represent persons charged with crime so long as he does not use his legislative position to try to modify or repeal any existing law for the benefit of the client? Where a client or the public might be led to believe that attorney-associates have such close personal and professional relationship as to imply special advantage or unusual influence with the attorney-judicial-officer, should the association be permitted?
||May associates who have a relationship that is something less than a true partnership adopt a firm name?
||May an associate of a Commonwealth attorney represent a plaintiff in a civil action against defendants who have been charged with crimes arising out of the same subject matter, and which the Commonwealth attorney has a duty to prosecute?
||May an attorney contact an opposing party to obtain information relating to a pending controversy, without the consent of opposing counsel?
||May a county attorney legally engage in the practice of Workmen’s Compensation and related cases? *Issued: Oct. 1974
||May an attorney negotiate directly with a layman representing the insurer during pending litigation?
||May an attorney be present to render legal advice to his client at a press conference called by this client?
||May an attorney represent a member of a group or a prepaid legal services plan?
||May a Commonwealth’s attorney ethically represent public utility
||May an attorney specializing in a branch of law send notices of this fact to other attorneys?
||May an attorney who accepts a case referred to him by another attorney on a contingent fee basis charge the client a fee for services performed prior to his discharge by the client where the original referring attorney accepts employment in the case?
||May an attorney engage in both the practice law and the operation of a real estate business?
||May a county attorney accept employment to represent a landowner whose property is being taken through condemnation proceedings by the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Department of Highways?
||Where the Commonwealth of Kentucky has a pending action for recovery of support money in behalf of a mother and for reimbursement by the father of money previously paid in the form of public assistance for the benefit of their child, may an assistant county attorney in his private practice file a separate action for the mother to recover support from the father and charge a fee for this service?
||May an attorney serving as county judge write a series of articles for a local newspaper discussing generally probate and estate law and procedure?
||May a city attorney accept employment to represent a landowner whose property is being taken through condemnation proceedings by the urban renewal commission of that city?
||In cases in which he has an interest? In cases coming before him in his capacity as criminal trial commissioner in quarterly court? In cases in which he does not have an interest?
||May lawyers continue use of the name of a deceased attorney whose practice has been assumed by the lawyers when in fact no partnership agreement ever existed?
||May an attorney in his private practice include on his letterhead reference to his position as a public official?
||May an attorney maintain a branch office in a county other than that in which his principal office is located and, if so, under what circumstances may this be done?
||May an attorney ethically continue his association with a law firm and have his name included on firm stationery following his election to the position of magistrate?
||May a county attorney represent a city in the same county on a contract basis?
||May an attorney be a shareholder, director and/or officer of a corporation organized to represent professional athletes in contract negotiations, wherein the corporation solicits athletes for representation by the corporation? May the attorney be employed as legal counsel by the corporation referred to in Question l? May the attorney be employed by the corporation referred to in Question I
to give legal services to the athlete? May the attorney be employed by the corporation referred to in Question I to enter into contract negotiations, etc., on behalf of the athlete?
||May an attorney ethically represent on retainer a corporation engaged in the business of selling to customers a package of computerized collection letters which includes two letters from the attorney with his pre-printed signature thereof?
||May an attorney ethically place an announcement in the “Kentucky Bar Journal” advising of his availability to act as a consultant to or as an associate of other lawyers in a particular branch of law?
||May a Kentucky attorney ethically form a partnership with an attorney in another state for the operation of law offices in both states? May a Kentucky attorney ethically form a limited partnership with an attorney in another state for the operation of law offices in both states, listing the other attorney as an associate on his letterhead?
||May an attorney ethically be employed by a collection agency to represent a
creditor in the filing of suit on a claim under an agency agreement executed by the creditor authorizing the collection agency to employ an attorney in its behalf?
||May an attorney serving as criminal trial commissioner in quarterly court share office space, on an expense sharing basis, with an assistant county attorney whose duties require him to act as criminal prosecutor in another division of quarterly court?
||May an attorney properly send to a defendant’s insurance carrier a copy of a demand letter addressed to defendant’s attorney?
||May an attorney serving as a member of the public defender program in one county ethically share office space with an attorney holding the position of county trial commissioner in another county?
||May an attorney act as trial commissioner of juvenile court in the county where his partner is Commonwealth attorney?
||May an attorney appearing on behalf of clients to have an individual declared incompetent later accept an appointment as committee for that individual where requested to serve by both those initiating the inquest and those who oppose it?
||May an attorney ethically participate in a legal advising system to be established by the student government of a university as a service to the students?
||May the partner of a county attorney ethically represent defendants in criminal cases in other counties? May a county attorney represent defendants in criminal cases in another state?
| KBA E-103
||May an attorney who as city attorney represented the civil service commission of that city in a claim by an employee for a disability pension later represent that individual after leaving office in litigation by the city to reduce the amount of his pension?
||Where an attorney has been employed by an insurance carrier to defend a claim against its policyholder by the insured’s wife, is it unethical for the attorney to file an answer to the suit without first consulting the insured?
||May an attorney who is counsel for a Board of Aldermen on a personal service contract write a legal opinion when requested to do so by the board about the constitutionality of a proposed city building and housing code if the attorney represents clients in his private practice who are either tenants or landlords and therefore subject to the code? In the circumstances of Question 1, must the attorney reveal the names of his clients who are tenants and landlords to the board? In the circumstances of Question 1, if the board has not requested a legal opinion from the attorney on the pending building and housing code, must the attorney at this time inform the board of the names of all clients he represents who are either tenants or landlords?
||May an attorney establish a law office in partnership with a law student prior to his admission to the Bar, and accept capital contributions from the student to help defray office expenses?
||May a local bar association place in local newspapers a series of articles designed to present a general discussion on legal topics of interest to the public?
||May a police officer also engage in the general practice of law as a licensed attorney, provided he avoids the practice of criminal law and personal injury cases arising out of automobile accidents?
||Is it ethical for an Assistant County Attorney, who is a prosecutor in Quarterly Court, to be appointed a Deputy Sheriff or Deputy Constable without drawing a salary in order to make arrests for various actions which have occurred in his court rather than going through the procedure of taking out warrants?
||May a firm maintaining a branch office in another city list on its letterhead, in addition to the location of the branch and name of the resident associate, the name of a member designated as “supervising partner” of that office?
||May a County Attorney conduct both the county business and his private practice out of the same office located in the county courthouse? Is it proper for a County Attorney to sit beside the County Judge at the bench during examining trials, juvenile hearings and other court proceedings?
||May a lawyer who is a candidate for Lieutenant Governor identify himself as a lawyer and a certified public accountant in the same campaign advertisement?
||May a lawyer permit his client to identify him (the lawyer) as the client’s lawyer in the client’s commercial advertising?
||May a practicing attorney who is a trial commissioner in the Quarterly Court of one county represent a defendant in a criminal action in another county?
||A lending institution prepares all loan closing documents itself but requires its closing attorney to comply with the Scrivener’s Statute, KRS 382.335. The institution makes a charge for preparation of the closing documents. May a lawyer properly close these loans (1) where the charge for preparation of the documents is
stated to, and collected from, the borrower separately and (2) where the preparation charge is not stated to the borrower but is collected from the closing attorney, either directly or by docking part of the title examination fee that was stated to the borrower?
||May a lawyer in general private practice engage in part-time claims adjusting for an independent adjusting company?
||May a lawyer be retained by a bonding company to represent a defendant in a criminal action for the purpose of entering a plea and negotiating a penalty?
||A law firm maintains an escrow account in which funds belonging to clients and others are deposited and from which funds belonging to clients and others are disbursed. There are many transactions in and out of this account. May the firm invest part of the balance in federally insured deposits and use the interest to help pay the expense of the accounting for the escrow account?
||May the members or associates of a law firm practice before the Kentucky Workmen’s Compensation Board when one of the members of the firm is the Director of the Board?
||May a county attorney share an office with the judge of the police court of a city in the county?
||May a county attorney also be attorney for a fourth-class city located in the county? May a county attorney share an office with or be the partner of the attorney for a fourth-class city located in the county?
||May the partners, associates, and employers of a part-time United States Magistrate defend criminal cases in state courts?
||If a lawyer serves as county judge pro tempore, is he precluded from defending criminal cases in quarterly and circuit court?
||Counsel for a defendant in a criminal case has advised the court that he represents
the defendant, has undertaken specific acts of representation in the case, and knows the case has been set for trial. May he properly fail to prepare for trial and seek leave to withdraw for the first time on the day of trial because his fee has not been paid?
||May a county judge who is a lawyer furnish to personal representatives in decedents’ estates printed form petitions for probate of wills and appointment of personal representatives? May the county judge or his lay clerks or secretaries prepare or assist in preparing petitions for personal representatives on such forms? May a county judge who is a lawyer furnish to personal representatives a format for final settlements? May a county judge, his clerks or secretaries, prepare or assist in preparing final settlements for personal representatives?
||May a part-time United States Magistrate (in a federal judicial district in which there are several other part-time magistrates as well as a full-time magistrate)represent local governmental organizations and agencies on a retainer basis?
||May a lawyer, who is a captain in a county police department and legal adviser to the department, defend criminal cases outside his own county? May he represent parties to disputes arising from motor vehicle accidents?
||May a lawyer in his private practice include his letterhead reference to his position as county judge or other public official?
||A complaint is filed against a lawyer pursuant to RAP 3.160 and is considered and dismissed by the inquiry tribunal. If the lawyer then sues the complainant for damages for filing the complaint may he attach the disciplinary complaint as an exhibit to the complaint for damages?
||May a lawyer cause a subpoena to be issued and served in a pending civil action purportedly compelling a witness to submit to a recorded interview under oath, without giving notice of the interview to opposing counsel affording him an opportunity to be present and cross-examine?
||May a county attorney represent residents of the county in a dispute concerning the legality of a contract for garbage collection and disposal services between the county and a private business corporation, into which the county entered before the county attorney assumed office?
||May a lawyer, who merely shares office space with a Quarterly Court trial commissioner, defend criminal cases in courts (other than the division of Quarterly Court in which the office-sharer sits) in the same county in which the office-sharer sits?
||May a lawyer who prepared a deed defend a suit to have the conveyance set aside?
||May a former assistant Commonwealth’s attorney defend against a criminal charge when the alleged crime occurred while he was in office, but no formal charge was made and no judicial proceeding was had against the defendant until after he had left office, and he, in fact, had no access to any confidential information concerning the matter while in office?
||A lending institution refers all prospective purchaser-mortgagors of real estate to
the same law firm for title examinations. Two members of the firm are on the
institution’s board. May the firm properly accept the employment thus referred to them?
||May a lawyer, who has been employed by a bank in numerous matters over
a long period of years but is not paid a retainer by the bank, accept
employment adverse to the bank in litigation unrelated to any matter in
which he was formerly employed by the bank?
||May a lawyer employed by an insurance company plan estates and prepare wills,
trust agreements, and partnership and corporate documents for the benefit of the
insurer’s customers, as part of its service to them as an insurer?
||May a lawyer in private practice, who represents the personal representative of a
murder victim in a wrongful death action against the alleged murderer, assist the
Commonwealth’s attorney in the murder trial without withdrawing from his
employment in the wrongful death action?
||May a lawyer serve as city attorney while his partner represents the
planning and zoning commission for the county in which the city is located?
||May a prosecuting attorney who has represented a party in a divorce action
subsequently participate in prosecution of the adverse party under KRS 530.050 for
nonsupport of the children of the marriage? May a prosecuting attorney who has prosecuted under KRS 530.050 for nonsupport
of children subsequently represent the complainant in a divorce action against the
KRS 530.050 defendant?
||May a Magistrate or Justice of the Peace complete the defense of criminal cases
undertaken prior to his appointment?
||A lawyer has withdrawn from representation of a corporation by written notice.
May he subsequently represent a stockholder in, and former officer and director
of, the corporation, in litigation against the corporation in which the attorney was
previously neither directly nor indirectly involved?
||An assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney investigates and prepares a criminal case
for trial, and conducts pretrial proceedings therein. After he has left office, may he
accept a fee from the victim’s family to continue the prosecution?
||May a law firm identify on its letterhead, its investigator, office manager, and
medical assistant by name and position, or otherwise indicate it employs persons in
one or more of these capacities?
||May a lawyer who shares offices with the county attorney accept employment
adverse to the county? May a lawyer who shares offices with the county attorney defend criminal cases
except those cases in the attorney’s county?
||May an assistant county attorney defend criminal cases in the quarterly, county,
circuit, and (after December 31, 1977) district courts of the county in which he is
appointed to serve? May his law partners defend criminal cases in the quarterly, county, and (after
December 31, 1977) district courts of the county in which he is appointed to serve?
||When a lawyer first begins practice, may he, his partner, or his employer suggest publication of a brief news story concerning the event to a local newspaper, and furnish the newspaper a brief biography and photograph of the lawyer for use in preparing the story?
||May a Kentucky law firm show branch offices in other states on its
letterhead? May law firm’s letterhead show a separate address of a lawyer designated as
“counsel” or “of counsel” to the firm on the letterhead? If a Kentucky law firm shows no office in some other state on its
letterhead, may it note on its letterhead in which states the lawyers listed
on the letter head are admitted to practice? If a Kentucky law firm shows an office in some other state on its letterhead,
may it show affirmatively in which states one or more of the lawyers listed
are admitted to practice?
||May a part-time public defender, appointed to represent a needy person pursuant to
KRS Chapter 31, privately charge his client a fee for services rendered pursuant to
||May a law firm properly pay its lay employees periodic bonuses computed at
predetermined rates as percentages of the firm’s gross or net income?
||Lawyers A and B share offices. Lawyer A is a part-time assistant county attorney
who prosecutes criminal and bastardy cases in the Quarterly Court. May B defend a
criminal case in Quarterly Court if A does not prosecute it? May B represent parties in bastardy actions in Quarterly Court if A is not involved? May B continue to represent the plaintiff in a bastardy case in Quarterly Court
which was pending before A became an assistant county attorney?
||May a lawyer properly enter into a contingent fee contract under which, for his
services in representing the wife in a divorce action, he is to receive from the wife a
stated fraction of the value of the “property recovered” for her in the action?
||May the Office of the Attorney General of Kentucky participate in criminal
proceedings against individuals who are or were codefendants with the
Commonwealth of Kentucky in civil actions when the Commonwealth was
represented by the Office of the Attorney General and both the civil and criminal
actions spring from the same incident?
||May a law firm accept major credit cards as a method of payment for legal
services performed by that firm?
||In a mortgagor’s action to foreclose a mortgage, may the mortgagor’s attorney, with
the mortgagor’s consent, bid on the mortgaged property at the commissioner’s sale
where the fair market value of the property is less than the amount needed to pay
the debts secured by the mortgage and all superior claims?
||Lawyers A, B and C share offices. Lawyer A represents the Special Fund before the
Workmen’s Compensation Board and shares the fees therefrom with Lawyer B.
Lawyer C is a member of the Kentucky General Assembly. Is Lawyer C in
violation of any ethical standards?
||Following X’s disbarment by the Supreme Court, may Y enter into an agreement to
purchase X’s practice in which Y pays X a percentage of the income Y derives
from services performed for X’s former clients?
||May an attorney include as part of an employment agreement with an associate a
restrictive covenant prohibiting the associate from practicing law within a stated
distance of the attorney’s office upon termination of the association?
||May attorney B, who is A’s partner, represent X and Y in a criminal
proceeding initiated by their bookkeeper where attorney A will be called to
testify concerning the legal advice and legal actions which he took on behalf
of X and Y, considering the provisions of DR 5-101(B)(1), (2), (3), or (4)?
The judge trying the case has already indicated before the instant issue was
raised that attorney A’s testimony would constitute an absolute defense to
the criminal charges. There will be no dispute as to the legal advice
rendered by attorney A to X and Y.
||Attorney, without compensation, obtains for a real estate broker, a listing of real
property from an owner who is not a client of the attorney. Owner, when listing is
made, is seeking assistance in solving some financial difficulties. Owner pays no
fee to the attorney yet attorney helps him with his difficulties. Attorney is not
compensated by real estate broker. After listing agreement is entered into, the
owner terminates said listing agreement, and litigation ensues. May the attorney
who obtained the real estate listing now represent the broker in litigation against the
||If an attorney and client have agreed that the attorney shall receive one-third (1/3)
of any recovery in a tort matter, either by suit or settlement, but the amount of the
settlement is not specified, and the attorney performs services and obtains a
settlement which is reasonable to him but is not acceptable to the client and the
client dismissed the attorney, may the attorney ethically (a) charge him a fee equal
to one-third (1/3) of the settlement”, or (b) collect a fee for the reasonable value of
the services rendered?
||May an attorney who is also a domestic relations trial commissioner for a
judicial circuit accept employment by a client in a domestic relations matter
in that circuit, which matter would then be heard by the circuit judge?
||Is it ethical for a county judge/executive to practice criminal law either as a special
prosecutor or as a defense attorney in the district courts or the circuit courts of that
||Is it proper for a practicing attorney to list an employee, not licensed to practice law
on the letterhead of the law firm?
||May a law firm which moved office locations notify the public at large of the
change by publishing an advertisement in the local newspapers?
||Client A employs an attorney to examine the title to Blackacre. The attorney
certifies to Client A that Blackacre is free and clear of all recorded liens or
encumbrances. B subsequently goes to the attorney, and asks him to file a lien on
Blackacre for materials furnished to the owner of Blackacre prior to the certification
and to file a lawsuit to collect for said materials. May the attorney accept B’s offer
||May a lawyer share office space, a secretary, a library and the same waiting room
with a circuit judge within the same circuit as the lawyer and before whom the
lawyer would be practicing?
||May a group legal service plan accept a legal fee for handling a Workmen’s
||In a multi-state firm, must every partner in the firm be a member of the Kentucky
||May a lawyer who is on a retainer or contract for a city in a specific area bring
suit against the city in an unrelated matter?
| KBA E-191
||May a lawyer allow the use of business cards with the name, address, and phone numbers
of an office manager/paralegal?
||May an Assistant County Attorney defend a criminal case in a county other than the
county of appointment to Assistant County Attorney? May an Assistant Commonwealth Attorney defend a criminal case in a county other
than the county of appointment to Assistant Commonwealth Attorney? May a County Attorney represent a client in another county in a request for a zone
||May a lawyer who shares office space with a part-time Commonwealth Attorney
practice criminal law in District Court? May a lawyer who shares office space with a part-time Commonwealth Attorney
practice criminal law in a Circuit Court?
||May a lawyer sign a title opinion to real estate, if in fact, the research and title
examination was made by others, probably non-lawyers?
||May a City Attorney act in a criminal case in which charges are brought by the
police in that city in either District or Circuit Court?
||May a lawyer in Kentucky place the name of an Indiana lawyer not admitted in
Kentucky, on its stationery with the title “Counsel?” May a lawyer in Kentucky place on the door of the office the name of an Indiana
lawyer who is not admitted to practice in Kentucky?
||May a lawyer represent two or more Kentucky municipalities simultaneously? May partners or associates in the same law firm represent two or more Kentucky
||May an attorney employed full time by a government agency represent a
client in a matter unrelated to his employment before another governmental
agency? May he represent another employee of a different department before a
disciplinary hearing? May he represent a client charged with a crime in a circuit court?
||May an attorney contract with a legal services office, which provides only free civil
legal services to indigent defendants, to represent clients in Bankruptcy Court,
which are referred to him by the legal services office for which the attorney is paid
an agreed per case fee by the legal services office?
||Must a lawyer charge fees set by the Bar Association fee schedule?
||May a lawyer advise a layman who is conducting his own divorce action about the
action without assuming the role of counsel for the layman? In the same circumstances, might the lawyers be liable for giving poor advice? Would the above answers be different if the lawyer volunteered the advice to the
||May a lawyer, unlicensed as a real estate broker or salesman under KRS Chapter
324, sell real estate in connection with the settlement of an estate?
||May a lawyer enter into a contingent fee arrangement for collection of back child
support or alimony?
||May an attorney employed by a firm or in private practice represent a client where
the opposing counsel is employed by the same firm or legal organization as the
attorney’s spouse? May an attorney employed by a firm or in private practice represent a client where
the opposing counsel is employed by the same firm or legal organization and the
opposing counsel works in the same office that employs the attorney’s spouse?
||May an attorney who files a joint petition in an uncontested divorce represent either
of the parties in subsequent related litigation if an adversary attitude develops
between the parties?
||Does a local rule of court which authorizes service on the party against whom relief
is sought and the attorney of record after a judgment in a divorce action violate DR
||May an assistant Commonwealth attorney or his associates engage in the private
practice of law? May an assistant Commonwealth attorney or his associates participate in any
divorce action where children are involved? May an assistant Commonwealth attorney’s practice include Workmen’s
||May an assistant Commonwealth attorney act as defense counsel in a criminal case?
||If an attorney, formerly in the employ of a governmental agency, leaves that
employment, may he accept private employment in a matter pending in the agency
if he gained no substantial knowledge of the matter in the course of his
employment?… if he gained substantial knowledge but did not perform any official act and was
not counsel of record with respect to the matter?… if he performed any act with respect to the matter on behalf of the agency?
||May a lawyer who has a suit pending against a corporation or governmental
entity contact the President, General Manager, or other employee having
access to confidential matters without prior consent of the other lawyer? May a lawyer who is presently suing a corporation or governmental entity
contact employees who are not managing agents and hourly wage earners
that have no access to privileged or confidential information?
||May a lawyer appointed as Trial Commissioner practice law before the judge who
appointed the lawyer? May a partner or associate of the Trial Commissioner practice before the Trial
Commissioner? May a lawyer serve as a Trial Commissioner and as an Assistant Commonwealth
Attorney or Assistant County Attorney at the same time? May a lawyer serve as a Trial Commissioner and a member of the firm serve as an
Assistant Commonwealth Attorney or Assistant County Attorney at the same time? May a lawyer who is Trial Commissioner of a district court practice criminal law in
the circuit court? May a Trial Commissioner represent a party bringing suit against the
Commonwealth of Kentucky?
||May a part-time assistant county attorney represent the defendant in a civil action to
collect delinquent dependency support payments?
||May an attorney with full consent and disclosure charge a service and interest charge on
advancements in litigation? May an attorney “co-sign” notes for a client in pending litigation for the purpose of
advancing funds to cover the cost of litigation? May an attorney charge interest and a service charge on unpaid fees with full disclosure
and consent of the client? May an attorney on a contingency fee charge long distance phone calls, postage,
stationery and photocopying to the client as “cost” of litigation on a contingent fee
||May a lawyer who is either executor/administrator and/or attorney for an estate
purchase real or personal property from the estate? May an attorney obtain a proprietary interest in real estate as compensation for his
legal services in lieu of a monetary fee?
||May a law firm form a “legal clinic” without a member of the law firm’s name
appearing in the clinic (i.e., Louisville Law Clinic)?
||May a prosecutor secure written affidavit from jurors in a criminal case regarding
their feelings as to the accused’s penalty with the specific intent to use this
information at the sentencing phase of the case?
||May a Kentucky lawyer enter into a partnership with a New York law firm for the
sole purpose of handling forwarded commercial accounts with agreement to pay the
New York lawyers three percent of all monies collected or fifty percent of all
noncontingent fees collected on the accounts that are forwarded to the Kentucky
lawyer by the New York law firm?
||Can an attorney employed by a bank to perform a title examination sign a dual
certification acknowledging his responsibility to both the bank and the customer
requesting and financing the examination?
||May a lawyer allow the use of business cards and letterhead with the names, addresses, and phone numbers of a paralegal?
||May an attorney advertise the fact that the lawyer is in the general practice of law?
||May a partner or associate of a city attorney of a city of the second class defend
criminal actions in District and/or Circuit Courts?
||May a paralegal appear in court and argue a motion on behalf of the client of his (her)
employer, assuming that the client understands that a paralegal is not a lawyer and
assuming that the lawyer has instructed and briefed the paralegal in preparation for said
||May an attorney licensed to practice only in the State of Indiana and
maintains an office in the State of Indiana, have a listing in the Louisville,
Kentucky yellow pages under the heading, “attorney”, with his Indiana
office and telephone number below? Would Bates v. State Bar of Arizona, (1977), have any effect on the above
||May an attorney who represents the Fraternal Order of Police practice criminal law
in the same jurisdiction?
||May an attorney who is a member of the Kentucky Legal Services Plan, Inc.
display a decal on his desk or in the reception area indicating that he is a member of
||May a lawyer who drafted a will represent the beneficiaries and executor under the
will where the lawyer who drafted the will will be a witness as to the competency
of the testator and/or undue influence of the lawyer may be an issue in the lawsuit?
|| May an attorney offset, against some judgment due his/her client from one cause of
action, an amount due the lawyer on a previous unrelated case?
|| When a lawyer has been discharged by a client may he refuse to deliver certain
items in the file to the client?
||May an attorney knowingly file a law suit in a court of which the lawyer knows
lacks jurisdiction to hear the case?
||May a lawyer sue a client in order to collect a fee? May a lawyer file criminal charges for failure to pay attorney fees under
||May an attorney who shares office space with another attorney who is employed as
a part-time assistant to the County Attorney represent juveniles as their attorney in
juvenile court proceedings wherein the juvenile is being brought before the court
for committing a public offense?
||May an attorney make a gift of routine legal services to a nonprofit organization to
be used as door prizes or auctioned off?
||May a Commonwealth Attorney represent a party other than the State in a
State condemnation proceeding? May a County Attorney represent a party other than the County in a State
||May one attorney represent a criminal defendant, and another attorney in the same
law office represent another criminal defendant, where the defendants are jointly
charged but neither has affirmatively waived the right to separate counsel pursuant
to RCr 8.30? May one attorney in a single public defender or public advocacy office represent a
criminal defendant, and another attorney in the same law office, who is also a
public defender, represent another criminal defendant in a single case in which the
defendants are jointly charged but neither has affirmatively waived the right to
separate counsel pursuant to RCr 8.30?
||May a lawyer who shares offices with the county attorney accept employment
adverse to the county? May a lawyer who shares offices with the county attorney defend criminal cases?
||May a partner and/or associate of the attorney for the Planning and Zoning
Commission represent the applicants for zoning changes before the Planning and
Zoning Commission? May a person who shares office space with the attorney who represents the
Planning and Zoning Commission represent applicants for zoning changes before
the Planning and Zoning Commission?
||May an attorney who does an estate planning for a husband and wife, later represent
either one in a subsequent divorce action?
||May an attorney, John Doe, who is incorporated in accordance with KRS Chapter
274, practice law under the designation John Doe & (Associates), (Lawyers),
||May an attorney, in a civil or criminal matter, fail to appear before a court hearing
when the attorney has not been paid for the legal services to be rendered?
||May an Assistant County Attorney who does exclusively Title IV-D cases and does
absolutely no prosecutions either in misdemeanor or traffic court represent clients
in the defense in criminal cases?
||May a law firm publish an announcement in a local newspaper, notifying the
general public of the opening of new offices, of the addition of associates, the
formation of new partnerships, or the relocation of offices, where publication of
such notices has been the custom for 150 years?
||May an attorney who has been appointed Public Defender in County X to represent
an indigent defendant, represent that same defendant for a fee in another criminal
matter in County Y at the same time?
||May a lawyer who receives a notice of taking of the deposition of his client send a
nonlawyer to observe the deposition and make notes?
||May a lawyer reveal the names and addresses of clients? May a lawyer reveal the credit listing of clients?
||May a lawyer employ a former lawyer who is presently disbarred or under
suspension to perform duties for the lawyer?
||May a lawyer employ a former lawyer who is presently disbarred or under suspension to
perform paralegal duties for the lawyer?
||May an Attorney for the Commonwealth prosecute a criminal action against
a defendant that was a party to a civil action in which the Attorney for the
Commonwealth represented one of the parties at the time the criminal
complaint was filed? May an Attorney for the Commonwealth represent a wife in a civil action
attempting to collect back child support against a husband after the
termination of a nonsupport action in favor of the husband prosecuted by
the Attorney for the Commonwealth? May the spouse of the Attorney for the Commonwealth that is in a separate
law office represent an individual in a civil matter where the Attorney for
the Commonwealth is prosecuting the individual in a criminal matter?
||May an attorney who is a member of the Board of Directors of a Legal Service
Program represent a client in a case when the adverse party is represented by an
attorney of the same Legal Service Program?
||May two lawyers list on the letterhead or by other means “Jones & Jones” when in
fact there is no partnership? May a lawyer be a member of more than one law firm?
||May a lawyer advertise legal services in the Commonwealth of Kentucky
and not be admitted to practice in the Commonwealth of Kentucky?
||May a lawyer list in the yellow pages of a telephone directory a law firm’s name
and the telephone number when in fact there is no law firm by that name in the city
in which the law firm has the listing? May a law firm list in the telephone directory Piere’s Patent Law Firm, Lexington,
with a phone number when in fact there is no law firm operating in Lexington?
||May County or Commonwealth’s Attorneys or their associates represent
licensees in disciplinary actions before the States’s licensing boards or
commissions? May they represent the licensee against the board or commission in district,
circuit or the appellate courts?
||May a lawyer put in an advertisement for legal services a picture of the lawyer’s
||May a lawyer receive compensation from one other than his client for services
rendered to the client? May a lawyer receive compensation from a lay person or lay organization other
than a client for merely referring the client to that person or organization?
||May a lawyer threaten to file a complaint with the Bar Association against a
lawyer in a pending court case where the first lawyer believes that the
second lawyer has a conflict of interest?
||May a lawyer send a non-lawyer to do anything in a courtroom with respect to the
representation of a client without a supervising lawyer present?
||May a lawyer or law firm hold an open house?
||May a lawyer who is employed under contingent contract but discharged without
cause before completion of the contract, claim any portion of the former client’s
recovery upon eventual successful completion of the litigation, either by suit or
||May a lawyer who represented a criminal defendant later represent the victim of
that criminal’s acts in an action before the Crime victims Compensation Board?
||May a law school faculty member represent a party in a lawsuit (including a class
action) when an opposing party is the state (or state official agency)?
||May a member of a law partnership be a Professional Service Corporation?
||May a part-time Attorney for the Commonwealth engage in the private
practice of law in civil cases?
||May an attorney ethically arrange for medical expert testimony through an
organization that charges a contingent fee for its services?
||May a lawyer contribute to a Justice, Judge or Candidate’s campaign for a position
on the Court of Justice?
||May a Bar Association conduct a judicial poll?
||May an attorney secretly record conversations with client, attorneys, judges, and the
public, including public officials, where said persons are not witnesses in a criminal
proceeding in which the attorney is employed as defense counsel? May an attorney employed to defend a person accused in a criminal proceeding secretly
record conversations with witnesses in that proceeding?
||May a lawyer charge a fee for duplication of a client’s file after the lawyer
has been discharged?
||May a lawyer who represents a particular agency on a personal service contract at
the same time represent an individual against that same state agency in a different,
unrelated matter? May a lawyer who is on a personal service contract with one state agency represent
a client in an action against another state agency?
||May a lawyer accept a fee in excess of a statutory or court ordered fee? If a lawyer may not ethically accept a fee in excess of a statutory or court ordered
fee, may the lawyer suggest or accept a gift from the client which would equal the
amount of the contractual fee between the two? If a lawyer may not suggest such a gift, may the lawyer suggest that the client give
a gift to a specific charity?
||May an attorney directly or indirectly solicit funds for a defendant in a criminal
case to pay for costs as well as the lawyer’s legal services? May an attorney representing a criminal defendant participate directly or indirectly
in such fund raising efforts to pay for costs as well as the lawyer’s legal services by
requesting others to solicit the necessary funds?
||May an attorney who is a shareholder in a corporation be the attorney for that
||May a lawyer have a lighted sign?
||May a lawyer have the “Scales of Justice” on the professional card? May a lawyer have the “Scales of Justice” on the lawyer’s letterhead?
||May an ex-judge presently in private practice represent a party in whose case the
judge ruled on the merits of as a judge? May a partner or associate of the ex-judge above represent the party?
||May a lawyer who is a member of the Kentucky Lawyer Referral Service ethically
participate in that organization’s proposed plan for funding its expenses, to wit:
that in lieu of forwarding an initial consultation fee of $15.00, the lawyer
contributes 10% of any fee collected as a result of further compensation.
||May an attorney suggest that a client secretly record phone conversations
with other persons, including other parties where the client is one party to
the conversation regarding a civil matter? If a client inquires of his attorney whether it is legal to secretly record phone
conversations, then may an attorney advise him of the law, and if it is legal,
can the attorney then allow his client to proceed with the recordings?
||May an attorney ever represent both sides in a “no-fault” divorce? If not, is it proper for the attorney representing one spouse to “talk with” the other
spouse and “answer questions”? May an attorney represent both parties to an ante-nuptial agreement? If not, is it proper for the attorney representing one spouse to “talk with” the other
spouse and answer questions”?
||May the partner or associate of an assistant county attorney represent a
defendant in a criminal proceeding in a court other than the court in which
the assistant county attorney practices, if the client consents to the
representation after full disclosure? May an assistant county attorney or his partner or associate represent a
person on a civil matter who is simultaneously being prosecuted in the same county for an unrelated criminal offense? Issued: May 1985
||May an attorney withdraw from funds received from third parties an amount due
the lawyer for fees and expenses, when such fees are in dispute, and the client does
not agree to such withdrawals? Issued: Sept. 1985
||May an attorney establish and operate a consulting business that would disseminate
legal information to business through training sessions?
||Is it ethical for a Commonwealth Attorney to represent a party in a contested
custody matter where no criminal warrants have been issued? Is it ethical for a Commonwealth Attorney to continue representation of a party in a
contested custody matter where the opposing party on the advice of counsel has
sought, but been refused, a criminal complaint relative to custody?
||May an attorney recommend title insurance and act as title examiner and agent for
the title insurance company in a real estate transaction or a loan transaction? May the attorney nominate other attorneys as “authorized title examiners” and split
insurance commissions with them if they recommend that title insurance be
purchased through him?
||Under what circumstances may a Legal Services Organization run a not-for-profit
lawyer referral service? May an attorney member of the Board of Directors of the Corporation participate in
||Frequent requests for Informal or Formal Opinions from opponents in litigation, clients, the
media, and others, necessitates the issuance of a Formal Opinion regarding the Committee’s
||A partner in a law firm is elected to Congress. May the firm leave the departing
partner’s name on the letterhead?
||May three separate firms assume the use of a common firm name or show
the fact of association or affiliation in their letterheads, business cards,
office signs and announcements?
||May client consent or “screening” permit a former judge’s firm to participate in a
matter in which the former judge “ruled on the merits” while on the bench?
||May an attorney practice under a trade name?
||What is the proper method of billing the time devoted to a legal matter by a
paralegal, or a non-admitted law clerk?
||If an insurance company has negotiated a settlement with the parents of a
minor child for an injury caused by the third party insured, and neither the
parents nor the minor child are represented by an attorney, may an attorney
paid by the insurance company prepare the petition for the appointment of a guardian and approval of the settlement, and appear in Court with the
parents and minor child?
||Attorney A is Chairman of the Board of a Mental Health Association that provides
marriage counseling services and counseling services related to family alcoholism.
A couple undergoes counseling and treatment at the Association’s center, and such
counseling results in a decision that the couple will divorce. The counselor
recommends that A represent the husband in the divorce action. A, as Chairman of
the Association, is privy to the parties’ financial situation as well as to all other
information in the parties’ file. May A undertake such representation?
||If a paralegal leaves a law firm (the “former firm”) and is hired by another law firm (the
“hiring firm”), which is the opposing counsel in several cases, does the hiring firm have a
conflict of interest?
||Does the Code of Professional Responsibility prohibit the designation on letterhead of
one firm as affiliated or associated with another, as long as the relationship between the
firms is such that the communication is not false and misleading and the law firms
adhere to the applicable rules regulating disclosure of confidential information and
conflicts of interest as if they were a single firm?
||May a Kentucky attorney participate in, and promote, a pre-paid legal services
||May a Kentucky attorney legitimately enter into a referral attorney agreement with
a for-profit lawyer referral service (that operates on a nationwide basis) if no
payment is required of participating attorneys but the for-profit service “selects”
||A lawyer has been representing a personal injury client, but has serious doubts
about the client’s competency. The lawyer is discharged by the client without
warning, and counsel is concerned about possible undue influence by successor
counsel or others, as well as the effects of the discharge on the client’s interests.
May the lawyer initiate proceedings for a conservatorship or similar protection of
||What is the proper response for an attorney who is subpoenaed by a prosecutor to
give testimony or supply evidence regarding his or her client before a Grand Jury?
||May a lawyer or law firm, previously contacted but not retained by a prospective
client regarding the possibility of bringing suit against another, represent the
defendant in the litigation, provided a lawyer client relationship with the client was
never formed and the lawyer did not obtain confidences or secrets from the plaintiff
that could be used to the advantage of the defendants?
||May an attorney, who intends to withdraw or has withdrawn from a law firm,
communicate by telephone or in person with clients with whom he personally has had a
professional relationship to inform them that he is establishing a new practice, and advise
those clients that they have a right to choose between the former firm and the attorney’s
new firm with respect to legal representation?
||May attorneys ethically form a legal research service to provide legal research to
other attorneys? Are the attorneys in the legal research service obligated to protect the confidences
and secrets of the clients of the attorneys for whom they perform legal research? Do the attorneys in the legal research service have a duty of loyalty to the clients of
the attorneys for whom they perform legal research?
||May a firm add to its letterhead the name of a deceased relative who has never
practiced with the firm, or the name of a retired or disabled lawyer who has never
practiced with the firm?
||A lawyer’s office is set back from the main thoroughfare so that the firm’s
nameplate is not visible to traffic. The lawyer wishes to place a dignified name
plate on a post or display used by other businesses in the same or adjacent
buildings. Is this permissible?
||May an attorney for a defendant in a criminal case ethically argue as a
ground for reversal that he has rendered ineffective assistance of counsel to
||May an attorney who defends criminal cases share office space with a full or
part-time prosecutor? Will the answer to Question 1 change if the part-time government lawyer’s duties
are limited to some special function? May an attorney who defends criminal cases rent office space in a building that is also occupied by a full or part-time Commonwealth or County Attorney?
||An attorney who is a partner in Firm X is married to an attorney in Firm Y. Both firms follow a general policy of not having their attorney work on a matter in which
the attorney’s spouse is involved. Nevertheless, a variety of situations have arisen,
and might arise in the future, involving such “spousal conflicts”. Accordingly, the
following questions have been posed to the Committee? Is it necessary for either firm to disclose to a client that the spouse of one of their
attorneys is employed by the firm retained by the client’s opponent, when both of
the spouses are working on the matter? Is the answer the same when only one of the spouses is working on the matter? Is the answer the same when neither spouse is working on the matter?
||May a lawyer provide a “second opinion” to a person who is already
represented by counsel?
||Does a clause in partnership agreement tying a partner’s right to certain
payments upon withdrawal from his or her firm to a covenant not to
compete within a geographical area violate DR 2-108(A)?
||May an attorney charge a fee to a physician or health care provider who is paid out
of the proceeds of a client’s settlement with an insurer or third party if the physician
or health care provider was not put on notice of the attorney’s expectations and did
not explicitly or tacitly approve of the attorney’s “working on its behalf”?
||The Louisville Bar Association has proposed that a Justice Center be established to
provide the public service of identifying legal and nonlegal problems for members
of the public, and referring the individual to an appropriate provider of services,
such as the Commonwealth’s Attorney, Legal Aid, Lawyer Referral, the Public
Defender, or, when appropriate, the Small Claims Court.
Furthermore, “future” plans contemplate advice regarding available methods or
sources of alternative dispute resolution. The Justice Center would also provide
legal and nonlegal information to the general public through seminars and
brochures that will deal with general, as opposed to individual, problems. To the
extent that advice will be given as to whether legal problems exist, such advice will
be provided by volunteer lawyers (or later, a staff attorney or attorneys) or
paralegals under the supervision of a lawyer.
The Justice Center would charge a nominal “scaled” fee to help defray the expenses
of the Center.
The Louisville Bar Foundation asks if such a Center would run afoul of the
prohibition of corporate practice of law.
||In an effort to compromise a class action, may the defense attorney make an
offer of settlement conditioned on the plaintiffs’ waiver of attorney fees?
||A liability insurance carrier instructs defense counsel to conduct or limit a
defense so as to minimize the insurer’s costs. Can such carrier imposed
limitations give rise to an ethical problem?
||May a lawyer representing a government office or department in a litigated
matter prevent his non-government opponent from contacting all employees
of the government office or department outside the presence of the
||Is it ethical for an attorney to enter into a contingent fee arrangement with a client
whose claim is based upon 42 U.S.C. 1983 and 1988, the latter statute providing for
an award of attorney fees? If the answer to the first question is yes, is the amount that the lawyer may be paid
limited by the amount awarded by the Court? Specifically, if the court awarded fee
is less than that provided for in the contingent fee agreement, is the lawyer
precluded from recovering the difference from the client?
||May a Kentucky Lawyer subscribe to the Talking Yellow Pages?
||May Kentucky lawyers participate in “Divorce Mediation?”
||May a suspended lawyer serve as a Paralegal in a law firm once the stated period of
suspension has expired?
||Attorney (“A”) forms a title insurance company (“Title Company”) and then sells
an ownership interest in Title Company to B. B is either a mortgage company, an
employee of a mortgage company, or a shareholder of a mortgage company. In
return, B channels business in the form of real estate closings from the mortgage
company B is associated with to attorney A. One of the requirements of the
mortgage company is that the buyer-mortgagor pay for mortgage title insurance
for the protection of the mortgagee (the mortgage company with which B is
associated). Attorney A collects the title insurance premium and pays it to Title
Company. Title Company issues the title policy and distributes the “profits” to
attorney A and to B. The requestors ask (l) if this is ethical (2) if disclosures are
||May a Kentucky lawyer privately practice law for profit under a trade name?
||What is the proper way to compute the amount of a contingent fee in the
context of a structured settlement?
||May a Kentucky Attorney who is selected by an insurer to defend its
insured comply with the insurer’s demand that claims personnel or other
representatives sit in on the attorney-client interview?
||May a lawyer delegate the task of taking depositions to a non-admitted law school
graduate or other lay assistant?
||May a lawyer representing commercial creditors in collection cases on a
contingent fee basis agree to advance litigation expenses without the clients
having liability to repay these advances (under any circumstances of success
or failure of the case)?
||May a lawyer limit his or her representation of an indigent pro se plaintiff
or defendant to the preparation of initial pleadings? May a legal services organization prepare handbooks for distribution to
laymen concerning their legal rights, which contain forms of pleading and
practice for use pro se?
||“May a Kentucky lawyer participate in “cooperative” advertising? May a Kentucky lawyer participate in for-profit lawyer referral service?
||How may a practitioner licensed in another state practice in the courts of Kentucky? May a non-lawyer represent a corporation in a court other than the small claims
||Under what conditions may a Kentucky lawyer participate in a For-profit, Pre-paid
Legal Service Plan?
||A lawyer is a member of Zoning Board or Planning Commission. May his
partners or associates represent clients before the Board or Commission if
the lawyer member disqualifies himself from any participation in the
||Is it ethical for a lawyer to represent to the court and the opponent, in a pretrial statement, that
certain persons will be providing expert testimony on their client’s behalf, and that person is not a
witness in any other capacity, when the named experts have never been contacted?
||May a City Attorney who does not perform any prosecutorial duties and whose
contract or job description does not require him to represent or advise the police
department of his or her city engage in the defense of criminal cases that involve
the city police?
||Past Kentucky Bar Association ethics opinions and court decisions counsel that a
prosecutor (and his partners and associates) should not try defendants with whom
the prosecutor is embroiled in civil litigation. Did the adoption of the Kentucky
Rules of Professional Conduct “overturn” these ethics opinions and decisions?
||To what extent is a lawyer permitted to provide loans, gifts, and campaign
contributions to a judge before whom the lawyer practices?
||Is “in person” or “live telephone” solicitation of corporate officers or employees
permitted under a “sophisticated client” exception to Rule 7.3(a)?
||Should a lawyer who represents the Transportation Cabinet (under contract,
retainer, or otherwise) at the same time represent another client against the
Transportation Cabinet? Should a partner or associate in a law firm represent a client against the
Transportation Cabinet when another member of the firm represents the
Transportation Cabinet? May a lawyer who represents the Transportation Cabinet (under contract, retainer,
or otherwise) represent a client against “another” agency of the Commonwealth of
Kentucky (i.e., the Revenue Cabinet)? May a partner or associate in that law firm represent a client against “another”
agency of the Commonwealth of Kentucky?
||Lawyer L1 represents client A in the defense of a civil matter brought by B.
Lawyer is then retained by the insurer of B’s (the plaintiff’s) lawyer L2 to
represent L2 in the defense of an unrelated legal malpractice claim. Assume in the
alternative that instead of being retained by a malpractice insurer, Ll’s firm is
hired by L2’s firm to do legal work in a specialized, non-litigation matter for L2’s
firm or for a client of L2. Is there a conflict of interest in either of these scenarios?
If there is a conflict, can the client or clients consent to the representation?
||Attorney A calls up Attorney B and asks for deposition dates as to fact Witnesses 1,
2, 3, and 4. Attorney B gives Attorney A a date certain upon which to hold
depositions of all four witnesses to occur at one hour intervals on the same day.
Attorney A then prepares a subpoena to secure the attendance of witnesses 1, 2, 3,
and 4 at the scheduled deposition. Attorney A then calls Attorney B and cancels the
deposition but proceeds on the date scheduled for the deposition to meet with
witnesses 1, 2, 3, and 4 to obtain their statements. Has Attorney A violated the
Rules of Professional Conduct?
||May lawyers in a law firm with a part-time associate or affiliated lawyer who is
also a full-time police officer undertake the representation of a defendant in a
criminal matter arising in the same jurisdiction in which the associate exercises
his police power?
||May a lawyer ethically do any of the following, either directly, or indirectly through
the Treasurer of a Labor Union’s “Designated Counsel Group” (to which
Designated Counsel Group an annual contribution must be paid)?
Specifically, may the lawyer:
1. Accept the role of “Designated Counsel?”
2. When invited, attend a regional or local meeting of union officials?
3. When invited, attend regional or local meetings of union members and
discuss with those members their rights as defined by the law (labor laws,
civil rights laws, FELA, and so forth)?
4. Provide a “hospitality room” at a union function attended by union
officials? 5. Pay for a dinner which will be attended by either union officials, union
members, or both?
6. Provide lodging at any union related function for union representatives or
7. Donate office equipment of any type to a union.
8. Pay law firm monies into the “Designated Counsel Group,” as
contributions, for the purpose of doing any of the above?
9. As a member of a group of law firms, jointly expend monies to fund
activities which are attended either by union officials, union members, or
||Is it ever permissible for a defense lawyer to charge a contingent fee in a
||Under the Rules of Professional Conduct, is it mandatory that an attorney report
dependency, neglect or abuse of a child which the attorney learns of in the process
of representing a client?
||Are lawyers in private practice disqualified from serving as mediators in
voluntary or court-annexed divorce mediation?
||May the Kentucky Lawyer Referral Service (KLRS) inset into its contract with
member attorneys the following term
"In all contingency fee cases, the member attorney must submit to the KLRS
Director (or allow the KLRS Director to review) documentation adequate to
confirm the total amount of the settlement," and may member attorneys comply
||May a lawyer, or the partners or associates of a lawyer, who provides contract
legal services to a city agency or department (foreclosures, tax collections,
defense of employment or discrimination complaints) defend criminal cases in
||May a lawyer take a divorce case on contingent fee? May a lawyer take a contingent fee in a divorce case if the only remaining issues
involved are property settlement issues? May a lawyer take a contingent fee in a case arising from a divorce case, (1)
involving the recovery of money or propert the payment of which is in arrears,
or (2) in a case in which marital assets are newly discovered after the action is
||Has a lawyer necessarily violated Rule 4.2 if his or her client talks to the opposing
party? Must a divorce mediator attempt to ascertain that a participant is represented by
||Under what conditions may lawyers who are not practicing in the
same firm split a legal fee? May an attorney divide a legal fee with
a referring attorney where the latter performs no legal service and
assumes no responsibility? May an attorney divide a legal fee with
a referring attorney where the latter performs no legal services
but assumes responsibility for the case?
||May an Attorney offer gifts or incentives to Realtors to
encourage the Realtors to request that lenders refer real estate
closings to Attorney’s office?
||May a lawyer enter into a contract with a liability insurer in which the lawyer
or his firm agrees to do all of the insurer’s defense work for a set fee. Regardless of the answer to the first question, may the lawyer agree to accept
cases from the insurer with the understanding that the attorney will be responsible
for all expenses of litigation (experts, court reporters, etc.) without expectation of reimbursement from the insurer.
||May a lawyer pay to participate in a new home owner service that distributes
welcoming packages to new families in a community, which contain address
books in which the attorney’s name, address and telephone number are listed,
along with discount coupons or gift certificates - for example, for a coupon for a
“no-charge” initial consultation or a coupon for “$50 good toward your legal fees.”
||May Kentucky Lawyers enter into an arrangement with LAWCARD, a
credit card program that finances the payment of legal fees?
||If “Lawyer” is an Alderman for the City of Louisville and is also
affiliated with Law Firm (a partner, associate, of counsel, or contract
lawyer), may other members of Law Firm represent clients before the
Louisville and Jefferson County Planning Commission?
||Pursuant to 42 USC Sec. 200e-5(f) the EEOC has filed an action against lawyer’s
client, the employer, and the affected employee has not intervened. Lawyer asks
if he or she may contact employee without the consent of the EEOC counsel, or
over the objection of the EEOC counsel.
||A Law Firm and the Jefferson County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office wish to
implement a Program pursuant to which a newly admitted lawyer would be
provisionally or conditionally hired by the Firm, but before being identified with
the Firm and before performing any legal services on its behalf, would serve a
two-year term as an employee of the Commonwealth Attorney. The new
prosecutor would be paid by the Commonwealth Attorney at the going rate, but
the Firm would contribute an additional $10,000 that would be available for a
salary supplement. The Firm and the Commonwealth Attorney ask (1) whether
the payment of the salary supplement poses any ethical problems; (2) whether
members of the Firm can continue to practice criminal (defense) law; and (3)
whether the firms client’s must be advised of the “relationship”?
||If a lawyer received materials that were not intended for the receiving lawyer,
should the lawyer be disciplined if the lawyer attempts to use the documents
pursuant to a good faith claim that any privilege or protection that would
otherwise have obtained has been waived. If a lawyer received materials under circumstances in which it is clear that they
were not intended for the receiving lawyer, should the lawyer refrain from
examining the materials, notify the sender, and abide by the instructions of the
sender regarding the disposition of the materials.
||During the course of the representation, may a lawyer loan money to his or her
client for financial assistance other than the expenses of litigation?
||May I sell insurance to a client, and receive a commission for it, when the sale of
insurance is related to my representation of the client, and the legal representation
involves estate and employee benefit planning? Is disclosure to my client of my receipt of a commission necessary? May I make the sale if there is-no relationship between the insurance and the legal
representation? Is disclosure to my client of my receipt of a commission necessary? May I prospect for insurance clients who are not now legal clients? What if they
desire to become legal clients in the future? Can I adjust my legal fees (discount) or would that be considered a rebate of
commissions in violation of insurance statutes? Can insurance commissions be considered partnership income, even if the
commission is paid directly to me as an individual? May I receive a referral fee from another insurance agent if I refer a client to
him/her in connection with a legal matter? What disclosures are necessary to the
client and to the insurance agent? Are the answers to the above questions altered by using a low-load insurance
||Attorney wants to form Corporation X, which will provide mediation services, including
domestic relations mediation, to the general public. Corporation X will have separate phone
facilities - a separate phone and a separate address - apart from Attorney’ s law firm, although
the mediation services would be provided by lawyers from Attorney’s firm. Will this violate SCR 3.020? Will the use of a trade name by Corporation X violate the Rules of Professional
Conduct? Can Corporation X solicit mediation business from other attorneys, from
insurance carriers, and from members of the general public?
||May a lawyer paid by insurer to defend an insured in a personal injury action in
which claims are also made against the insurer under the UCSPA represent both
the insured and the insurer?
||May a lawyer report clients to a credit reporting agency when they have refused
requests for payment and the lawyer does not wish to sue them?
||May a retainer fee be designated as “non-refundable?” Is the lawyer’s designation of a payment as “non-refundable” conclusive as to “reasonableness” of the fee? What are the crucial elements of a valid “non-refundable” retainer agreement? If the lawyer obtains an advance fee payment, and the arrangement is not a valid
“non-refundable” retainer agreement, must the funds be held in the lawyer’s trust
||May a lawyer representing a client in a matter adverse to an organizational party
that is represented by another lawyer, without violating Rule 4.2, communicate
about the subject matter of the representation with an unrepresented former
employee of the organizational party without the consent of or notification to the
||May the lawyer, knowing that the organization is represented by counsel in that
matter, interview an employee who has a management position in the organization
without the consent of the organization’s counsel? May the lawyer interview a non-managerial employee whose acts or omissions in
connection with the matter cannot be imputed to the organization for purposes of
civil liability or who statement will not constitute and admission on the part of the
organization - that is, an employee whose conduct did not give rise to the claim
against the organization and who statements do not relate to the scope of the
employee witness’s employment, without notifying the organization’s counsel? May the lawyer, knowing that the organization is represented by counsel in that
matter, interview a non-managerial employee regarding matters within the scope
of that employee’s employment, whose act or omission in connection with that
matter may be imputed to the organization, or whose statement may constitute an
admission on the part of the organization, without the consent of the
||Does a lawyer have an ethical obligation to ensure payment to an individual who has
provided services to, or on behalf of the lawyers client, or in the furtherance of the
a) if the lawyer hired the individual provider?
b) if the lawyer did not hire the individual provider?
c) if, under the same circumstances as 1(a) and 1(b) above, no recovery is
had, or the recovery is insufficient?
d) if the client directs the lawyer not to pay the third person, and instead
directs the lawyer to deliver all funds or property to the client?
Do the Rules of Professional Conduct require a lawyer to recognize and comply with
a third person's claim of ownership to the client's property that is in the lawyer's
||“Your AFDC client’s spouse should be paying $85.00 per week child support
under the [child support] guidelines. This puts [the client] wife over the limit for
the medical card. She [the client] wants to agree to $45.00 per week and keep the
medical card because her husband can not get medical insurance through his work
and she knows she will have to bring him back to court time and time again to
force him to pay the children’s medical bills.” May the lawyer present to the
court the parties’ agreement settling on $45.00 a week?
||Is the Legal Aid Society, through its HIV/AIDS Legal Project, engaging in
unethical solicitation of clients by receiving referrals from AIDS’ service
organizations? What may the HIV/AIDS Legal Project of the Legal Aid Society say or do once a
prospective client, during an intake interview, notifies them that they are
represented by an attorney in a matter? That is, may the Legal Aid Society take
the case at the request of the prospective client, resulting in a dismissal of the
||May the spouse of a prosecutor practice criminal law in the same jurisdiction as
the spouse-prosecutor, so long as the spouses do not appear in the same cases, and
so long as the client consents after consultation?
||May a former “in-house” lawyer for a corporation or other entity [see Rule 1.13]
represent a client in a matter adverse to the interests of the corporation or entity if
the matter is substantially related to matters handled by the lawyer when he or she
worked “in-house” for the corporation or entity?
||May a lawyer advertise or otherwise promote the fact that he or she will donate a
percentage of his or her fees to charities designated by the lawyer’s clients?
||Is it ethical for lawyers to practice under a partnership name - e.g. “Jones &
Smith” - if they are not, in fact partners?
||May a lawyer, after disclosure to and consent by the client, receive compensation,
structures as a percentage share of a recurring account management fee, for the
lawyer’s referral of the client to an investment advisor?
||May a lawyer enter into an agreement with a charitable
organization pursuant to which the lawyer will charge a reduced fee to the
organization or the organization's member for estate planning services, conditioned on a bequest to the organization? May a lawyer agree to provide pro bono wills or other estate
planning services for the members of a church or other charitable
organization? If a lawyer serves on a charitable organization's "planned giving
committee" which offers estate planning seminars to potential donors, may
the lawyer later accept employment from a client who attended the
seminar? If a donor has already decided to give a bequest to a charity, but
wants the charity to recommend a lawyer to provide the legal services
necessary to effectuate the gift or bequest and/or pay any lawyer fees
associated with the making of the gift or bequest, may a lawyer accept
||May counsel for a corporation communicate with a corporate employee about the
subject matter of a case brought by the employee against the corporation, if the
corporate counsel knows that the employee is represented by another lawyer in
the matter and does not have the consent of that lawyer to contact the represented
||May the lawyer for a claimant contact the insured tortfeasor, over the objection of
the insurer, if no lawyer has been appointed to represent the insured tortfeasor?
||May a lawyer knowingly present testimony of an expert witness when the expert
witness is to be compensated on a contingent fee basis, or for a set fee with a
“bonus” due if the suit is successful and a recovery is obtained in excess of a
certain amount? May a lawyer contract for other litigation support services on a contingent fee
basis, or for a set fee with a “bonus” due if the suit is successful and a recovery is
obtained in excess of a certain amount, so long as those services do not include
the presentation of expert testimony or the splitting of legal fees with a nonlawyer?
||May a lawyer hold a client’s file because of a fee dispute?
||May lawyers who are not members of the same law firm use the following name
in their letterhead, brochures, and advertising - “Able, Baker, Charles, & Dilbert”
[Subtitle: An Association of Attorneys].
||Will the KBA Ethics Committee decide motions to disqualify counsel when such
motions are referred to the Committee by the Courts of the Commonwealth?
||A lawyer has been asked to serve as a hearing examiner for a City’s Human
Rights Commission. This would involve the lawyer presiding from time to time
on cases involving charges of discrimination under the Kentucky Civil Rights
Act, KRS Chapter 344, making proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law
for the Human Rights Commission to review, consider and either approve or
deny. Some compensation would be provided for these services. The lawyer
practices in the areas of employment and civil rights law. The lawyer would have
occasion to represent clients, both claimants and defendants, before the local Civil
Rights Commission. May the lawyer who serves as a hearing examiner continue
to represent clients before the Human Rights Commission in cases unrelated to
the cases in which the lawyer is participating or has participated as a hearing
||When law firms represent adverse parties in a matter, may a lawyer in one of the
law firms negotiate for employment with the other law firm? If so must
disclosure of the fact of the negotiations be made to the firms’ client who is
involved in the adverse representation?
||Is it ethical for [a] lawyer, acting on her client’s behalf, to compensate a nonexpert
witness for time spent in attending a deposition or trial or in a meeting with
the lawyer preparatory to such testimony, provided that the payment is not
conditioned on the content of the testimony and provided further that the payment
does not violate the law of the jurisdiction.
||The Committee has been asked to address the applicability of the Kentucky Rules of
Professional Conduct with respect to a lawyer’s representation of the fiduciary of a decedent’s
estate or trust, and the lawyer’s responsibilities to the beneficiaries of estates and trusts. In order
to provide the requested advice, explain the Committee’s position on these issues, and to give
insight into the applicable Rules of Professional Conduct, the following questions are presented
for response and discussion.
Does a lawyer’s representation of a fiduciary of a decedent’s estate or trust
expand or limit the lawyer’s obligation to the fiduciary under the Rules of
Professional Conduct? Does a lawyer’s representation of a fiduciary of a decedent’s trust or estate
impose on the lawyer obligations to the beneficiaries of the decedent’s trust or
estate that the lawyer would not have toward third parties? Is the lawyer’s obligation to preserve client confidences under Rule 1.6 altered by
the fact that the client is a fiduciary? May the lawyer for the fiduciary also represent the beneficiaries of the decedent’s
trust or estate?
||Does compliance with the limitations on attorney fees under the new Workers’
Compensation Law violate the KRPC? Does compliance with the arbitrator’s or ALJ’s demands for information needed
for approval of fees necessarily violate the KRPC? Do the rules governing ex parte communications apply in proceedings before the
Kentucky Department of Workers’ Claims? Is the new law in conflict with the KRPC and therefore unconstitutional?
||May a lawyer use electronic mail services including the Internet to communicate
with clients without encryption? Is the creation and use by a lawyer of an Internet “web site” containing
information about the lawyer and the lawyer’s services that may be accessed by
Internet users, including prospective clients, a communication falling within
KRPCs 7.09 [Prohibited Solicitation] or 7.30 [Direct Contact With Prospective
||Law Firm represents and defends insureds under liability policies issued by
Insurance Company. Insurance Company sends Law Firm’s bills to an outside audit
company, which is not affiliated with or an employee of Insurance Company. Audit
Company makes recommendations to Insurance Company as to payment or nonpayment.
Law Firm’s bills contain detailed information about the services performed pursuant to
the representation. In addition to this, Insurance Company has asked Law Firm to allow
Audit Company to review the detailed bills which Law Firm has sent to other insurance companies, unrelated to Insurance Company.
Would Law Firm’s submitting its Insurance Company bills directly to
Audit Company, rather than to Insurance Company, without the law firm’s obtaining the fully informed consent of the insured, violate the Kentucky
Rules of Professional Conduct? Would the Law Firm’s submitting other clients’ bills to Audit Company
violate the Kentucky Rules of Professional Conduct?
||A “sole practitioner” - for purposes of this opinion a lawyer who has no law
partners or persons with similar rights and powers - dies. A “sole practitioner”
employed associates or salaried lawyers who have no proprietary interest in the business of the deceased
lawyer’s firm, no or extremely limited managerial responsibilities, and no or very
limited rights in the attorney-client fee contracts and files. Upon the death of the
“sole practitioner,” the formerly employed lawyers find themselves unemployed, unpaid, and technically unable to act as agents for the deceased lawyer, the
“firm,” or the estate. What ethical duties do these lawyers owe to clients with
whom they dealt personally and to courts in which they are appearing on behalf of
clients of the “firm”?
||May two law firms that often represent clients with adverse interests employ the
same legal secretary?
May two or more lawyers who share office space and often represent clients with adverse interests, share a legal secretary?
May two law firms or lawyers sharing office space share a legal secretary when
the law firms or office-sharing lawyer do not represent clients with adverse
||May an attorney employee of the Department of Public Advocacy negotiate for
future employment with prosecutorial entities?
||May a lawyer who is also a real estate sales agent with a brokerage firm provide
legal representation to a client in the same transaction in which the lawyer
provides to the client services as a real estate sales agent and is to receive a
commission? May a lawyer who is a real estate sales agent with a brokerage firm provide legal
representation to a client if other real estate agents working with the same brokerage firm are providing real estate services for the transaction in which the
legal services are to be rendered?
May a lawyer who is also a real estate sales agent with a brokerage firm provide
legal representation to a client if the lawyer also provides services as a real estate
sales agent to that client and if the legal services are unrelated to the real estate ervices?
||If an attorney is defending an Insured with the defense being provided by an
Insurer pursuant to an insurance contract between the Insurer and the Insured, and
if that attorney is aware that the attorney’s legal bills sent to the Insurer are
forwarded to an outside auditing firm, what do the Kentucky Rules of
Professional Conduct require of the attorney?
||Does an attorney violate the Kentucky Rules of Professional Conduct if he
discloses information to the Insurer in the course of defending the Insured if that
information is damaging to the Insured on the issue of coverage but is not known
by the attorney to be damaging when the information is disclosed? May an attorney defend an Insured if the Insurer provides the defense under a
reservation of rights? May an attorney defending an Insured whose defense is provided by the Insurer
under a reservation of rights communicate with the Insurer regarding the status
and analysis of liability? May an attorney continue to defend the Insured if the Insurer provides the defense
and if the Insurer files an action for Declaration of Rights? May an attorney defending the Insured communicate about the status and analysis
of liability with the Insurer who is providing the defense if the Insurer has filed an action for Declaration of Rights? May an attorney defend an Insured in a matter in which the Insurer is providing
the defense is also a party when the attorney represents the Insurer in other
||May an attorney ethically represent a client on a contingency fee basis when the
matter is an appeal of the dissolution of marriage decree as it relates to
classification of certain property as non-marital?
||May a partner of a prosecutor represent criminal defendants?
May a partner of a prosecutor represent criminal defendants in a different county
than that in which the prosecutor acts as prosecutor?
May a partner of a prosecutor represent criminal defendants if funds that the
prosecutor receives from his prosecutorial duties and funds that the partner
receives from his defense practice are not co-mingled? May a partner of a prosecutor represent criminal defendants if no advertising is
done on behalf of the firm stating that the partner is an prosecutor?
||May Master Commissioners maintain IOLTA accounts for all transactions related
to the Master Commissioner duties?
||A Kentucky statute, Kentucky Revised Statute 205.712(7), states:
Where the local county attorney, friend of the court, domestic
relations agent, or other designee of the cabinet has been
contracted for the purpose of administering child support
enforcement pursuant to Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, the
contracting official shall be deemed to be representing the cabinet
and as such does not have an attorney-client relationship with the
applicant who has requested services pursuant to Title IV-D of the
Social Security Act nor with any dependent on behalf of the
individuals for whom services are sought.
Given the existence of this statute, does an attorney who handles child support
enforcement matters pursuant to an arrangement with the Cabinet for Families
and Children, Child Support Division, have an attorney-client relationship with
the parties who seek the enforcement services such that a conflict of interest
might exist with regard to future support enforcement actions against that same
||May a part-time prosecutor represent a respondent in a matter involving a civil
domestic violence order?
||In general, may an insurance defense lawyer agree to abide by insurer-prescribed
case handling guidelines in representing the insured? More particularly, may the lawyer accept representation under guidelines that:
a. Require approval by the insurer before the lawyer undertakes any
discovery, conducts any legal research, or files any motion? Require all investigative work or all records review to be performed only
by the insurer’s employees or, if performed by the lawyer’s firm, to be
billed only at a paralegal rate? Require prior approval of compensation for additional lawyers or experts
with whom the principal lawyer may wish to confer, or for a lawyer’s trial
preparation exceeding a specified pretrial period (e.g., thirty days)? Prescribe detailed billing and reporting procedures, with deadlines for
||May a lawyer share office space with persons or organizations engaged in
activities other than the practice of law?
||Is Lawyer A imputedly disqualified from representing a client if
s/he shares office space with Lawyer B, who -- before sharing the space –
represented (or practiced in a firm that represented) a former client with an
adverse interest in the same or substantially similar matter?
||May prosecutors (Commonwealth’s attorneys or county attorneys) arrange
and conduct meetings with judges for the purpose of establishing informal
policies or shared understandings on issues likely to influence outcomes in
pending or future criminal cases?
||May a lawyer who represents a client under a contingent fee contract
borrow funds from a lending institution to cover litigation expenses?
May the lawyer pass the interest on the loan (along with other related fees)
on to the client by deducting them from the proceeds of a judgment or
settlement before computing the net sum owed to the client?
: May the lawyer give a lender a security interest in the contingent fee in a
||May a part-time Commonwealth Attorney, or a member of his or her firm,
represent a landowner in a condemnation action by the state.
||May a lawyer who has noticed a deposition and served a subpoena duces tecum on a
non-party witness, cancel the deposition upon receipt the subpoenaed documents,
without providing the other parties with copies of all documents obtained. May a lawyer serve a trial subpoena duces tecum on a person or entity and orally or
in writing request the subpoenaed person or entity to “certify” the records and
provide them directly to the requesting lawyer in lieu of attending the trial, without
giving notice of the subpoena or the documents produced to the other parties?
||May a lawyer use a subpoena to compel the attendance
of a witness at a pretrial court proceeding and then, after
service, invite the witness to make a statement or
execute an affidavit in the requesting lawyer’s office
without notice to opposing counsel, where required, and
thereafter relieve the witness of the obligation to appear
at the court proceeding?
May a lawyer issue a subpoena to a person or entity
accompanied by a letter (or by other means) inviting that
person or entity to “certify” requested documents and
provide them directly to the requesting lawyer, in lieu of
attending a pretrial hearing or trial, without notice to
opposing counsel, or a grand jury proceeding where such
notice is not required?
||When a lawyer terminates his or her relationship with a private law firm,
must the departing lawyer, or the firm, communicate with current clients
regarding the departure?
.When a lawyer terminates his or her relationship with a private law firm,
may the departing lawyer communicate with individuals other than current
clients, including former clients and “firm” clients, regarding the
When a lawyer terminates his or her relationship with a private law firm to
continue in private practice, may the departing lawyer take the files of
current clients whom the departing lawyer is representing?
||May a lawyer participate in a collaborative law process that requires the
parties to negotiate in good faith and to voluntarily disclose all relevant
May a lawyer participate in a collaborative law process that encourages
the lawyer to withdraw if the client fails to negotiate in good faith or make
the agreed upon disclosures?
May a lawyer participate in a collaborative law process that prohibits the
lawyer for either party from continuing to represent their respective clients
in the same or substantially related matter if the parties are unable to reach
May lawyers join together in a collaborative law organization to enhance
their professional development and promote the collaborative law process?
| No Opinions
||May a lawyer accept credit card payment for both earned fees and nonrefundable
retainers? If so, must the payment be deposited in the lawyer’s office
May a lawyer accept credit card payment for advances on either attorney
fees or costs and expenses? If so, where must the lawyer deposit the funds?
May the lawyer pass the credit card service charges on to the client?
||May a lawyer or law firm use a domain name that does not identify the
lawyer or firm, but links to a website that clearly identifies the sponsoring lawyer or law
May a lawyer maintain a website that is identified by domain name only
and does not identify an individual lawyer or law firm?
||May a lawyer participate in a not-for-profit bar association lawyer referral
service and agree to pay the association a percentage of the legal fee earned from the
May a lawyer participate in a not-for-profit bar association lawyer referral
service where the fees generated may be used to defer the reasonable expenses of the
referral service and other service activities of the referral service or the sponsoring
||May a lawyer participate in a for-profit group marketing arrangement
where prospective clients are provided information about lawyers through an 800 number
or an internet website?
May a lawyer pay reasonable costs to participate in a for-profit group
If a lawyer participates in for-profit group marketing, is the lawyer
responsible for assuring that the advertisement complies with the requirements of the
Kentucky Rules of Professional Conduct.
| No Opinions
||Under what circumstances does SCR 3.130 (8.3) impose a duty to
report professional misconduct of others?
When does a lawyer “know” that a violation has occurred?
What constitutes a “substantial question” under Rule 8.3?
Does a lawyer have a duty to report conduct unrelated to the
practice of law or to judicial duties?
Does a lawyer have a duty to report information protected by SCR
3.130(1.6) or other law, or information received in the course of
participation in the Kentucky Lawyer Assistance Program
(KYLAP) or the Ethics Hotline? Does a lawyer have a duty to self-report his or her own misconduct
or that of an associate?
Does a lawyer have a duty to report the misconduct of a suspended
or disbarred lawyer? Does a prosecutor have additional responsibilities under Rule 8.3? Is the reporting lawyer immune from civil or criminal liability? What are the procedures for reporting a violation and when must
the report be made?
||May a lawyer assist a client in obtaining funds to cover the client’s
personal expenses during the pendency of an action?
If a lawyer assists a client in obtaining funds from a lender, what
are the lawyer’s ethical responsibilities?
May a lawyer charge a client for facilitating the financial transaction?
If there is a recovery and funds are delivered to the lawyer for
disbursement, is the lawyer ethically obligated to honor the client’s
agreement to repay the lender from the funds recovered?
||What are the ethical obligations of a lawyer who has funds or property belonging
to a client who cannot be located?
What are the ethical obligations of a lawyer to continue to represent a client who cannot be located?
What are the ethical obligations of a lawyer who receives a settlement offer on behalf of a client who cannot be located?
||May a lawyer access or otherwise use the social network site of a third person
to benefit a client?
||May a criminal defense lawyer advise a client with regard to a plea agreement that
waives the client’s right to pursue a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel as part of
the waiver of the right to collaterally attack a conviction covered by the plea agreement?
May a prosecutor propose a plea agreement that requires a waiver of the defendant’s or
potential defendant’s right to pursue a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel relating
to the matter that is the subject of the plea agreement?
||How long must a lawyer retain a closed client file, paper or electronic?
||May lawyers use cloud computing with clients’ confidential information?
||Upon the conclusion of a domestic relations mediation in which the parties to the mediation are not represented by counsel, may the lawyer who served as mediator in the matter assist the parties to the mediation in the preparation of the agreement reached during the mediation conference? After the conclusion of a domestic relations mediation in which the parties to the mediation are not represented by counsel, may the lawyer who served as mediator in the matter assist one or both of the parties in the preparation of ancillary documents? Upon the conclusion of a domestic relations mediation in which the parties to the mediation are not represented by counsel, may the lawyer who served as mediator in the matter assist one or both of the parties to the mediation in the preparation of ancillary documents but with the understanding that the lawyer-mediator does not represent anyone regarding the document preparation?
||What should an attorney do when the attorney has reason to believe that an elderly or special needs client is or has been abused, neglected, or exploited? What should an attorney do when the attorney has reason to believe that a client is or has abused, neglected, or exploited a person to whom the client owes a fiduciary duty?