Wednesday, July 11, 2007

A Tricky Situation

What is an attorney's ethical obligation if she believes that a client was mistakenly paid about $12,000 more than the amount to which the client was entitled? What if the client refuses to pay the overage and tells the attorney that the money is spent? The client has a duty of candor to the tribunal that had miscalculated the payment that trumps the duty of confidentiality, according to an opinion of the Ethics Advisory Panel of the Rhode Island Supreme Court. The attorney is obligated to disclose if she is unable to persuade the client. The inquiry involved an award of additional disability benefits by an administrative law judge. (Mike Frisch)

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