Monday, October 30, 2006
Despite repeated warnings of the risks associated with representing both spouses in preparing an estate plan, many attorneys continue the practice.
Recently, a Texas lawyer was given a public reprimand for such conduct. Here is a summary of what happened:
[A] member of [the attorney's] law firm prepared estate planning documents for a husband and wife, including reciprocal wills. The husband had been represented by [his] law firm for other legal matters as well.
On April 12, 2002, [the attorney] drafted a new will for the wife naming the wife’s mother as the sole beneficiary of her estate.
[The Attorney] failed to obtain the prior consent of the former client husband before presenting the wife and drafting a new will.
See Disciplinary Actions, Tex. B.J. 902, 904 (2006).