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Criminal Procedure

Pace Law Faculty Publications

2018

Legal ethics

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A Penal Colony For Bad Lawyers, Bennett L. Gershman Jan 2018

A Penal Colony For Bad Lawyers, Bennett L. Gershman

Pace Law Faculty Publications

In this article I set out what I believe is an extreme and unconventional way to discipline egregiously bad lawyers. For starters, I think it might be useful to survey briefly the kinds of lawyering conduct currently subject to disciplinary sanctions. Regulation of the conduct of defense lawyers in the U.S. is hedged by various legal and professional rules that are enforced by courts and disciplinary bodies essentially to ensure a minimum level of competent and ethical representation. The Sixth Amendment right to counsel--the so-called “sacred” right--seeks to ensure at least a reasonable degree of lawyering skill. Also, professional ...