Tag Archives: Professional Responsibility

Don’t Make the Judge Angry!

Have you seen the recent article about a Miami area drug possession bond hearing? The video clip and article can be found here. We can all agree that it is not a good idea to disrespect a judge. And of course, every lawyer and law student knows to show respect to a judge in her own courtroom. We may have to rethink this assumption after watching this clip from the People’s Court with a University of Miami law student. Wow!

Ethical opinions are often not easily found in the typical law student’s first choice for legal research (i.e. Westlaw or Lexis). However, most ethical opinions can be found on the open Internet. The recent ABA ethical opinions are on the ABA website. The archive of older ethical opinions is available for ABA members. (Law student dues are only $25 or three years for $60).

State ethical opinions are often available from the state bar website or the state supreme court website. Often an Internet search of the state name and “ethical opinions” will quickly find ethical opinions. Once located the search function within the websites vary. In Florida, ethical opinions are available on the Florida Bar website which is searchable by opinion number or keyword. The results produced from the search include a brief summary of the subject matter. In California, the ethical opinions can only be searched along with the rest of the Bar website. In Illinois the voluntary bar association has advisory opinions that can be browsed and searched by subject or full-text, while the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission provide both basic and advanced search functions of the official ethical rules and opinions.

So know your duties and obligations as a lawyer – and don’t make the judge angry!