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Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility Commons

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Interpreting Ethics Rules, Samuel J. Levine 2024 Pepperdine University

Interpreting Ethics Rules, Samuel J. Levine

Pepperdine Law Review

This Article explores the interpretation of ethics rules through the prism of two rules that have been the subject of ongoing controversy and contention: Rule 4.2, the “no-contact” rule, which prohibits a lawyer from communicating with a represented client absent the consent of that client’s lawyer, and Rule 8.4(g), which prohibits various forms of discrimination and harassment. Each of these rules provides a model for a wider examination of different interpretive approaches to ethics rules, grounded in different attitudes toward the features and functions of ethics codes. Specifically, the debate revolving around Rule 4.2 illustrates competing approaches to interpreting a …


Gray Areas In Green Claims: Why Greenwashing Regulation Needs An Overhaul, Valerie J. Peterson 2024 Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law

Gray Areas In Green Claims: Why Greenwashing Regulation Needs An Overhaul, Valerie J. Peterson

Villanova Environmental Law Journal

No abstract provided.


Examining The Examiner: An Amicus Brief On Conflicts Between Forensic Technology And Indigenous Religious Freedoms In Favor Of Virtual Autopsies, Peyton James 2024 Purdue University

Examining The Examiner: An Amicus Brief On Conflicts Between Forensic Technology And Indigenous Religious Freedoms In Favor Of Virtual Autopsies, Peyton James

The Journal of Purdue Undergraduate Research

No abstract provided.


Navigating The Conundrum Of Mandatory Reporting Under The Pocso Act: Implications For Medical Professionals, Nanditta Batra 2024 National Law School of India University, Bengaluru

Navigating The Conundrum Of Mandatory Reporting Under The Pocso Act: Implications For Medical Professionals, Nanditta Batra

Articles

To address the under reporting of sexual offences against children, the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, makes reporting of such offences mandatory. The duty to report such offences has been extended to healthcare professionals. The inclusion of healthcare professionals within mandatory reporting, however, strikes at the very foundation of the doctor-patient relationship based on trust and confidentiality and conflicts with the patient confidentiality safeguards of the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017. It also has unintended public health consequences, such as denial of medical termination of pregnancy due to fear of prosecution under POCSO. An urgent reassessment of …


Revised Aba Standard 303: Curricular, Pedagogical, And Substantive Questions, Steven W. Bender 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Revised Aba Standard 303: Curricular, Pedagogical, And Substantive Questions, Steven W. Bender

Seattle University Law Review SUpra

ABA accreditation standards now require law schools to provide education and training on racism, bias, and cross-cultural competence. This seemingly straightforward mandate raises numerous questions as schools plan for and implement compliance. Here, I articulate and approach these compliance questions using insights drawn from critical theory—which supplies helpful guidance for responses and ultimately antiracism legal education that is more than minimalist. Armed with critical insights, lawyers are better equipped to contribute to the struggle to eradicate systemic social ills in law and society.


Cyber Security: A Lawyer’S Ethical Duty, Meagan Folmar 2024 St. Mary's University

Cyber Security: A Lawyer’S Ethical Duty, Meagan Folmar

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

No abstract provided.


“Zealous” Professional Ethics: The Transcendence Of Natural Law, Legal Positivism, And The Ethical Stage In The U.S. Legal Ethics System And The Moral Dilemma That Surround Zealous Representation, Sudarsanan Sivakumar, Marshall Maina 2024 St. Mary's University

“Zealous” Professional Ethics: The Transcendence Of Natural Law, Legal Positivism, And The Ethical Stage In The U.S. Legal Ethics System And The Moral Dilemma That Surround Zealous Representation, Sudarsanan Sivakumar, Marshall Maina

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

The zealous pursuit of law has its own ideals and dogma that sets it apart from the other rules in the Model Rules of Professional Conduct. Decades after many enactments and amendments, there still exists many debates considering its operation as to whether an attorney owes a duty toward society over the representation of the client. This is a Delphi method that has made even the best seasoned ‘Justiciar’ and ‘Legislator’ unable to find the proper guidelines to implement upon the Legal Superstructure. The Model Rules of Professional Conduct attempt to clear the fog around the existing principle of Zealous …


The Ethical Lawyer: Beyond The Rules, Nick Badgerow 2024 St. Mary's University

The Ethical Lawyer: Beyond The Rules, Nick Badgerow

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

Does being a lawyer mean more than the mere pursuit of a client’s cause and resulting (hoped for) financial success and professional standing, while avoiding discipline? This article invites a consideration of what it means to be a true “professional” in the practice of law. First, the article explores the definition of the term “professional,” and proceeds to examine the obligations undertaken by lawyers (a) in their oath of admission, and (b) in codes of professional conduct. However, the author posits, should not the true professional aspire to more than the mere compliance with these minimum standards? In answer, the …


Artificial Intelligence And Legal Malpractice Liability, Vincent R. Johnson 2024 St. Mary's University School of Law

Artificial Intelligence And Legal Malpractice Liability, Vincent R. Johnson

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

No abstract provided.


Rumpole And The Dissatisfied Client: Lessons On Justice From Four Case Studies In Client Objectives V. Lawyer Means, Thomas N. Bulleit, Esq. 2024 St. Mary's University

Rumpole And The Dissatisfied Client: Lessons On Justice From Four Case Studies In Client Objectives V. Lawyer Means, Thomas N. Bulleit, Esq.

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

Fictional barrister-at-law Horace Rumpole is a skillful, tenacious, and even fearsome courtroom advocate for his criminal defense clients. He cares deeply about winning. But Rumpole departs from the stereotypical heroes and antiheroes of fictional courtroom drama in that he typically complies fully with the ethical constraints on advocacy and the truth-finding process. When Rumpole does occasionally stumble, it is in the other direction: by losing track of his client, and presenting often unwanted truths to elevate victory above other needs or interests that the client considers just as, or sometimes much more, important than a favorable verdict.

Using several of …


Shareholder Primacy Versus Shareholder Accountability, William W. Bratton 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Shareholder Primacy Versus Shareholder Accountability, William W. Bratton

Seattle University Law Review

When corporations inflict injuries in the course of business, shareholders wielding environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) principles can, and now sometimes do, intervene to correct the matter. In the emerging fact pattern, corporate social accountability expands out of its historic collectivized frame to become an internal subject matter—a corporate governance topic. As a result, shareholder accountability surfaces as a policy question for the first time. The Big Three index fund managers, BlackRock, Vanguard, and State Street, responded to the accountability question with ESG activism. In so doing, they defected against corporate legal theory’s central tenet, shareholder primacy. Shareholder primacy builds …


Public Primacy In Corporate Law, Dorothy S. Lund 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Public Primacy In Corporate Law, Dorothy S. Lund

Seattle University Law Review

This Article explores the malleability of agency theory by showing that it could be used to justify a “public primacy” standard for corporate law that would direct fiduciaries to promote the value of the corporation for the benefit of the public. Employing agency theory to describe the relationship between corporate management and the broader public sheds light on aspects of firm behavior, as well as the nature of state contracting with corporations. It also provides a lodestar for a possible future evolution of corporate law and governance: minimize the agency costs created by the divergence of interests between management and …


Corporate Law In The Global South: Heterodox Stakeholderism, Mariana Pargendler 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Corporate Law In The Global South: Heterodox Stakeholderism, Mariana Pargendler

Seattle University Law Review

How do the corporate laws of Global South jurisdictions differ from their Global North counterparts? Prevailing stereotypes depict the corporate laws of developing countries as either antiquated or plagued by problems of enforcement and misfit despite formal convergence. This Article offers a different view by showing how Global South jurisdictions have pioneered heterodox stakeholder approaches in corporate law, such as the erosion of limited liability for purposes of stakeholder protection in Brazil and India, the adoption of mandatory corporate social responsibility in Indonesia and India, and the large-scale program of Black corporate ownership and empowerment in South Africa, among many …


Robo-Voting: Does Delegated Proxy Voting Pose A Challenge For Shareholder Democracy?, John Matsusaka, Chong Shu 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Robo-Voting: Does Delegated Proxy Voting Pose A Challenge For Shareholder Democracy?, John Matsusaka, Chong Shu

Seattle University Law Review

Robo-voting is the practice by an investment fund of mechanically voting in corporate elections according to the advice of its proxy advisor— in effect fully delegating its voting decision to its advisor. We examined over 65 million votes cast during the period 2008–2021 by 14,582 mutual funds to describe and quantify the prevalence of robo-voting. Overall, 33% of mutual funds robo-voted in 2021: 22% with ISS, 4% with Glass Lewis, and six percent with the recommendations of the issuer’s management. The fraction of funds that robo-voted increased until around 2013 and then stabilized at the current level. Despite the sizable …


The Esg Information System, Stavros Gadinis, Amelia Miazad 2024 Seattle University School of Law

The Esg Information System, Stavros Gadinis, Amelia Miazad

Seattle University Law Review

The mounting focus on ESG has forced internal corporate decision-making into the spotlight. Investors are eager to support companies in innovative “green” technologies and scrutinize companies’ transition plans. Activists are targeting boards whose decisions appear too timid or insufficiently explained. Consumers and employees are incorporating companies sustainability credentials in their purchasing and employment decisions. These actors are asking companies for better information, higher quality reports, and granular data. In response, companies are producing lengthy sustainability reports, adopting ambitious purpose statements, and touting their sustainability credentials. Understandably, concerns about greenwashing and accountability abound, and policymakers are preparing for action.

In this …


Stakeholder Governance On The Ground (And In The Sky), Stephen Johnson, Frank Partnoy 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Stakeholder Governance On The Ground (And In The Sky), Stephen Johnson, Frank Partnoy

Seattle University Law Review

Professor Frank Partnoy: This is a marvelous gathering, and it is all due to Chuck O’Kelley and the special gentleness, openness, and creativity that he brings to this symposium. For more than a decade, he has been open to new and creative ways to discuss important issues surrounding business law and Adolf Berle’s legacy. We also are grateful to Dorothy Lund for co-organizing this gathering.

In introducing Stephen Johnson, I am reminded of a previous Berle, where Chuck allowed me some time to present the initial thoughts that led to my book, WAIT: The Art and Science of Delay. Part …


Stakeholder Capitalism’S Greatest Challenge: Reshaping A Public Consensus To Govern A Global Economy, Leo E. Strine Jr., Michael Klain 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Stakeholder Capitalism’S Greatest Challenge: Reshaping A Public Consensus To Govern A Global Economy, Leo E. Strine Jr., Michael Klain

Seattle University Law Review

The Berle XIV: Developing a 21st Century Corporate Governance Model Conference asks whether there is a viable 21st Century Stakeholder Governance model. In our conference keynote article, we argue that to answer that question yes requires restoring—to use Berle’s term—a “public consensus” throughout the global economy in favor of the balanced model of New Deal capitalism, within which corporations could operate in a way good for all their stakeholders and society, that Berle himself supported.

The world now faces problems caused in large part by the enormous international power of corporations and the institutional investors who dominate their governance. These …


Delegated Corporate Voting And The Deliberative Franchise, Sarah C. Haan 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Delegated Corporate Voting And The Deliberative Franchise, Sarah C. Haan

Seattle University Law Review

Starting in the 1930s with the earliest version of the proxy rules, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has gradually increased the proportion of “instructed” votes on the shareholder’s proxy card until, for the first time in 2022, it required a fully instructed proxy card. This evolution effectively shifted the exercise of the shareholder’s vote from the shareholders’ meeting to the vote delegation that occurs when the share-holder fills out the proxy card. The point in the electoral process when the binding voting choice is communicated is now the execution of the proxy card (assuming the shareholder completes the card …


A Different Approach To Agency Theory And Implications For Esg, Jonathan Bonham, Amoray Riggs-Cragun 2024 Seattle University School of Law

A Different Approach To Agency Theory And Implications For Esg, Jonathan Bonham, Amoray Riggs-Cragun

Seattle University Law Review

In conventional agency theory, the agent is modeled as exerting unobservable “effort” that influences the distribution over outcomes the principal cares about. Recent papers instead allow the agent to choose the entire distribution, an assumption that better describes the extensive and flexible control that CEOs have over firm outcomes. Under this assumption, the optimal contract rewards the agent directly for outcomes the principal cares about, rather than for what those outcomes reveal about the agent’s effort. This article briefly summarizes this new agency model and discusses its implications for contracting on ESG activities.


Stakeholder Governance As Governance By Stakeholders, Brett McDonnell 2024 Seattle University School of Law

Stakeholder Governance As Governance By Stakeholders, Brett Mcdonnell

Seattle University Law Review

Much debate within corporate governance today centers on the proper role of corporate stakeholders, such as employees, customers, creditors, suppliers, and local communities. Scholars and reformers advocate for greater attention to stakeholder interests under a variety of banners, including ESG, sustainability, corporate social responsibility, and stakeholder governance. So far, that advocacy focuses almost entirely on arguing for an expanded understanding of corporate purpose. It argues that corporate governance should be for various stakeholders, not shareholders alone.

This Article examines and approves of that broadened understanding of corporate purpose. However, it argues that we should understand stakeholder governance as extending well …


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