SUBJECT

Twelve proposed new or amended Rules of Professional Conduct of the State Bar of California developed by the State Bar's Special Commission for the Revision of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

BACKGROUND

The Rules of Professional Conduct of the State Bar of California are attorney conduct rules the violation of which will subject an attorney to discipline.  Pursuant to statute, rule amendment proposals may be formulated by the State Bar for submission to the Supreme Court of California for approval.  The State Bar has assigned a special commission to conduct a thorough study of the rules and to recommend comprehensive amendments.

(See additional proposed rule revisions).

In 2006, the Commission completed work on a group of twenty-seven proposed rules and those rules were distributed for a public comment period, which ended on October 16, 2006.

In 2007, the Commission completed work on a group of five proposed rules and those rules were distributed for a public comment period, which ended on October 26, 2007.

In 2008, the Commission completed work on a group of thirteen proposed rules and those rules were distributed for a public comment period, which ended on June 6, 2008.

In July of 2009, the Commission completed work on a group of eight proposed rules and those rules were distributed for a public comment period, which ended on October 23, 2009.

In September of 2009, the Commission completed a fifth group of proposed rules and the public comment period on those eleven proposed rules ended on November 13, 2009.

Public hearings have been conducted in connection with each of these public comment distributions.

The Commission has now completed work on twelve more proposed rules that are the subject of this present request for public comment.

PROPOSAL

The twelve proposed amended rules are listed below by proposed new rule number. Where applicable, the rule number of the comparable current California rule is indicated in brackets. Each of these proposed rules are subject to change following consideration of the public comment received.

Rule                   Title                                                                                                            
Rule 1.0.1         Terminology [1-100]      
Rule 1.4.1         Insurance Disclosure [3-410]     
Rule 1.11          Special Conflicts for Government Employees [N/A]       
Rule 1.17          Sale of a Law Practice [2-300]   
Rule 1.18          Duties to Prospective Client [N/A]         
Rule 3.9            Non-adjudicative Proceedings [N/A]      
Rule 4.1            Truthfulness in Statements to Others [N/A]         
Rule 4.4            Respect for Rights of 3rd Persons [N/A]           
Rule 6.1            Voluntary Pro Bono Service [N/A]         
Rule 6.2            Accepting Appointments [N/A]  
Rule 6.5            Limited Legal Services Programs [1-650]           
Rule 8.2            Judicial and Legal Officials [1-700]

Each proposed rule is presented in a comparison table format preceded by a summary cover sheet and a general introduction. The comparison table format has three columns.

The first column presents the clean version of an American Bar Association (ABA) Model Rule counterpart, if any. 

The second column presents a redline draft of the Commission’s proposal that shows changes to the ABA Model Rule counterpart. 

If there is no Model Rule counterpart but there is a California rule counterpart, then the chart compares the proposed rule to the California rule.

The third column presents the Commission’s explanation of each deviation from the ABA Model Rule language. 

In addition, at the end of each table is the clean version of the Commission’s proposed rule and an excerpt that summarizes selected state variations.  This format is intended to simplify the consideration of any changes to the ABA Model Rules and to make plain the Commission’s rationale for such changes. 

FISCAL/PERSONNEL IMPACT

No unbudgeted fiscal or personnel impact.

NOTE

Comments may be sent in writing to the address below or submitted online to: Public Comment Form

ATTACHMENTS
SOURCE

State Bar Special Commission for the Revision of the Rules of Professional Conduct

COMMENT DEADLINE

March 12, 2010

DIRECT COMMENTS TO:

Audrey Hollins
Office of Professional Competence, Planning and Development
The State Bar of California
180 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
415-538-2167
415-538-2171 Fax