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A lawyer's fiduciary duties arise from his status as a member of the legal profession and are expressed, at least in part, by the applicable rules of professional conduct.
The word fiduciary in this quotation comes from the Latin word fiducia, meaning "trust"; as a fiduciary, then, the attorney acts as the trusted representative of the client.
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A lawyer who becomes sexually involved with a client in a Divorce proceeding can take advantage of the client under-going emotional trauma. Thus, for example, an attorney who by representing one client adversely affects another client has a conflict of interest and is guilty of misconduct.
That lawyer may hinder any attempts at reconciliation between a couple and complicate matters for any children involved. Conflict of interest rules also forbid an attorney to enter into a business transaction with a client unless the client is fully aware of how the transaction will affect his or her Legal Representation and agrees to the transaction in writing. American Bar Association; Attorney-Client Privilege; Civil Procedure; Ethics, Legal; Legal Advertising; Legal Representation; Malpractice; Model Rules of Professional Conduct; Public Defender; Trial.
Behavior by an attorney that conflicts with established rules of professional conduct and is punishable by disciplinary measures.
More than any other profession, the legal profession is self-governing.
Some attorneys object to such rules, arguing that they interfere with their First Amendment rights to . If an attorney is related to another attorney as parent, child, sibling, or spouse, that attorney may not represent a client in opposition to the related attorney except when given consent to do so by the client.
They bristle at the notion of state bar associations regulating the private affairs of consenting adults. "Sex Behind the Bar: Should Attorney-Client Sexual Relations be Prohibited? This type of conflict of interest has become increasingly common as more women enter the legal profession and the number of marriages between attorneys grows.
These rules are then adopted, sometimes in a modified form, by state courts and enforced by court-appointed disciplinary committees or bar associations.
Attorneys found to be in violation of professional standards are guilty of misconduct and subject to disciplinary procedures.
That is, it is largely regulated by lawyers and judges themselves rather than by the government or outside agencies.
In particular, the American Bar Association (ABA), the largest professional association for attorneys, governs the Practice of Law through its establishment of rules of conduct.
The ABA's Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility addressed this issue in 1992 by issuing a formal opinion (no. Although the opinion acknowledged that the Model Rules of Professional Conduct do not specifically address the issue of attorney-client sex, it argued that an attorney's sexual relationship with a current client "may involve unfair exploitation of the lawyer's fiduciary position and presents a significant danger that the lawyer's ability to represent the client adequately may be impaired, and that as a consequence the lawyer may violate both the Model Rules and the Model Code." Becoming sexually intimate with a client, the opinion adds, undermines the "objective detachment" necessary for Legal Representation because "[t]he roles of lover and lawyer are potentially conflicting ones." In addition, the opinion argued, attorney-client sex introduces a clear conflict of interest into a case, and it may also compromise Attorney-Client Privilege, the principle that ensures the confidentiality of lawyer-client communication.