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End-of-life notice: American Legal Ethics Library

As of March 1, 2013, the Legal Information Institute is no longer maintaining the information in the American Legal Ethics Library. It is no longer possible for us to maintain it at a level of completeness and accuracy given its staffing needs. It is very possible that we will revive it at a future time. At this point, it is in need of a complete technological renovation and reworking of the "correspondent firm" model which successfully sustained it for many years.

Many people have contributed time and effort to the project over the years, and we would like to thank them. In particular, Roger Cramton and Peter Martin not only conceived ALEL but gave much of their own labor to it. We are also grateful to Brad Wendel for his editorial contributions, to Brian Toohey and all at Jones Day for their efforts, and to all of our correspondents and contributors. Thank you.

We regret any inconvenience.

Some portions of the collection may already be severely out of date, so please be cautious in your use of this material.


Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct

RULE 150 ADOPTION OF RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT

[1] The Model Rules of Professional Conduct adopted by the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association on August 2, 1983, with certain amendments approved by this Court, are hereby adopted as the rules of professional conduct for lawyers who practice in Nevada. The rules may be referred to as the Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct and are comprised of the rules set out in this section of Nevada Supreme Court Rules entitled  “Rules of Professional Conduct.”

[2] The preamble and comments to the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct are not enacted by this Rule but may be consulted for guidance in interpreting and applying the Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct, unless there is a conflict between the Nevada Rules and the preamble or comments.

[3] All other rules of this Court stating or adopting by reference rules of professional conduct for lawyers who practice in Nevada in effect as of the date of the adoption of this Rule 150 are hereby repealed.

CLIENT-LAWYER RELATIONSHIP

Rule 151 Competence

A lawyer shall provide competent representation to a client. Competent representation requires the legal knowledge, skill, thoroughness and preparation reasonably necessary for the representation.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 152 Scope of Representation

[1] A lawyer shall abide by a client’s decision concerning the objectives of representation, subject to subsections 3, 4 and 5, and shall consult with the client as to the means by which they are to be pursued. A lawyer shall abide by a client’s decision whether to accept an offer of settlement of a matter. In a criminal case, the lawyer shall abide by the client’s decision, after consultation with the lawyer, as to a plea to be entered, whether to waive jury trial and whether the client will testify.

[2] A lawyer’s representation of a client, including representation by appointment, does not constitute an endorsement of the client’s political, economic, social or moral views or activities.

[3] A lawyer may limit the objectives of the representation if the client consents after consultation.

[4] A lawyer shall not counsel a client to engage, or assist a client, in conduct that the lawyer knows is criminal or fraudulent, but a lawyer may discuss the legal consequences of any proposed course of conduct with a client and may counsel or assist a client to make a good faith effort to determine the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law.

[5] When a lawyer knows that a client expects assistance not permitted by the rules of professional conduct or other law, the lawyer shall consult with the client regarding the relevant limitations on the lawyer’s conduct.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 153 Diligence

A lawyer shall act with reasonable diligence and promptness in representing a client.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 154 Communication

[1] A lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and promptly comply with reasonable requests for information.

[2] A lawyer shall explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit the client to make informed decisions regarding the representation.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 155 Fees

[1] A lawyer’s fee shall be reasonable. The factors to be considered in determining the reasonableness of a fee include the following:

(a) the time and labor required, the novelty and difficulty of the questions involved, and the skill requisite to perform the legal service properly;

(b) the likelihood, if apparent to the client, that the acceptance of the particular employment will preclude other employment by the lawyer;

(c) the fee customarily charged in the locality for similar legal services;

(d) the amount involved and the results obtained;

(e) the time limitations imposed by the client or by the circumstances;

(f) the nature and length of the professional relationship with the client;

(g) the experience, reputation, and ability of the lawyer or lawyers performing the services; and

(h) whether the fee is fixed or contingent.

[2] When the lawyer has not regularly represented the client, the basis or rate of the fee shall be communicated to the client, preferably in writing, before or within a reasonable time after commencing the representation.

[3] A fee may be contingent on the outcome of the matter for which the service is rendered, except in a matter in which a contingent fee is prohibited by subsection 4 or other law. A contingent fee agreement shall be in writing and shall state, in boldface type that is at least as large as the largest type used in the contingent fee agreement:

(a) The method by which the fee is to be determined, including the percentage or percentages that shall accrue to the lawyer in the event of settlement, trial or appeal;

(b) Whether litigation and other expenses are to be deducted from the recovery, and whether such expenses are to be deducted before or after the contingent fee is calculated;

(c) Whether the client is liable for expenses regardless of outcome;

(d) That, in the event of a loss, the client may be liable for the opposing party’s attorney’s fees, and will be liable for the opposing party’s costs as required by law; and

(e) That a suit brought solely to harass or to coerce a settlement may result in liability for malicious prosecution or abuse of process.

Upon conclusion of a contingent fee matter, the lawyer shall provide the client with a written statement stating the outcome of the matter and, if there is a recovery, showing the remittance to the client and the method of its determination.

[4] A lawyer shall not enter into an arrangement for, charge, or collect:

(a) any fee in a domestic relations matter, the payment or amount of which is contingent upon the securing of a divorce or upon the amount of alimony or support, or property settlement in lieu thereof; or

(b) a contingent fee for representing a defendant in a criminal case.

[5] A division of fee between lawyers who are not in the same firm may be made only if:

(a) The division of fee is in proportion to the services performed by each lawyer or each lawyer, by written agreement, assumes joint responsibility for the representation;

(b) The client is advised in writing of and does not object to the participation of all the lawyers involved; and

(c) The total fee is reasonable.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 156 Confidentiality of Information

[1] A lawyer shall not reveal information relating to representation of a client unless the client consents after consultation, except for disclosures that are impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation, and except as stated in subsections 2 and 3.

[2] A lawyer shall reveal such information to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary to prevent the client from committing a criminal act that the lawyer believes is likely to result in imminent death or substantial bodily harm.

[3] A lawyer may reveal such information to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary:

(a) To prevent or rectify the consequences of a client’s criminal or fraudulent act in the commission of which the lawyer’s services have been used, but the lawyer shall, where practicable, first make reasonable effort to persuade the client to take corrective action; or

(b) To establish a claim or defense on behalf of the lawyer in a controversy between the lawyer and the client, to establish a defense to a criminal charge or civil claim against the lawyer based upon conduct in which the client was involved, or to respond to allegations in any proceeding concerning the lawyer’s representation of the client.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 157 Conflict of Interest: General Rule

[1] A lawyer shall not represent a client if the representation of that client will be directly adverse to another client, unless:

(a) The lawyer reasonably believes the representation will not adversely affect the relationship with the other client; and

(b) Each client consents, preferably in writing, after consultation.

[2] A lawyer shall not represent a client if the representation of that client may be materially limited by the lawyer’s responsibilities to another client or to a third person, or by the lawyer’s own interests, unless:

(a) The lawyer reasonably believes the representation will not be adversely affected; and

(b) The client consents, preferably in writing, after consultation.

When representation of multiple clients in a single matter is undertaken, the consultation shall include explanation of the implications of the common representation and the advantages and risks involved.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 158 Conflict of Interest: Prohibited Transactions

[1] A lawyer shall not enter into a business transaction with a client or knowingly acquire an ownership, possessory, security or other pecuniary interest adverse to a client unless:

(a) The transaction and terms of which the lawyer acquires the interest are fair and reasonable to the client and are fully disclosed and transmitted in writing to the client in the manner which can be reasonably understood by the client;

(b) The client is given a reasonable opportunity to seek the advice of independent counsel in the transaction; and

(c) The client consents in writing.

[2] A lawyer shall not use information relating to representation of a client to the disadvantage of the client unless the client consents after consultation.

[3] A lawyer shall not prepare an instrument giving the lawyer or a person related to the lawyer as parent, child, sibling, or spouse any substantial gift from a client, including a testamentary gift, except where the client is related to the donee.

[4] Prior to the conclusion of representation of a client, a lawyer shall not make or negotiate an agreement giving the lawyer literary or media rights to a portrayal or account based in substantial part on information relating to the representation.

[5] A lawyer shall not provide financial assistance to a client in connection with pending or contemplated litigation, except that:

(a) A lawyer may advance court costs and expenses of litigation, the repayment of which may be contingent on the outcome of the matter; and

(b) A lawyer representing an indigent client may pay court costs and expenses of litigation on behalf of the client.

[6] A lawyer shall not accept compensation for representing a client from one other than the client unless:

(a) The client consents after consultation;

(b) There is no interference with the lawyer’s independence of professional judgment or with the client-lawyer relationship; and

(c) Information relating to representation of a client is protected as required by Rule 156.

[7] A lawyer who represents two or more clients shall not participate in making an aggregate settlement of the claims of or against the clients, or in a criminal case an aggregated agreement as to guilty or nolo contendere pleas, unless each client consents after consultation, including disclosure of the existence and nature of all the claims or pleas involved and of the participation of each person in the settlement.

[8] A lawyer shall not make an agreement prospectively limiting the lawyer’s liability to a client for malpractice unless permitted by law and the client is independently represented in making the agreement, or settle a claim for such liability with an unrepresented client or former client without first advising that person in writing that independent representation is appropriate in connection therewith.

[9] A lawyer related to another lawyer as parent, child, sibling or spouse shall not represent a client in a representation directly adverse to a person who the lawyer knows is represented by the other lawyer except upon consent by the client after consultation regarding the relationship.

[10] A lawyer shall not acquire a proprietary interest in the cause of action or subject matter of litigation the lawyer is conducting for a client, except that the lawyer may:

(a) Acquire a lien granted by law to secure the lawyer’s fee or expenses; and

(b) Contract with a client for a reasonable contingent fee in a civil case.

[11] A lawyer shall not stand as security for costs or as surety on any appearance, appeal, or other bond or surety in any case in which the lawyer is counsel.

[Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 159 Conflict of Interest: Former Client

A lawyer who has formerly represented a client in a matter shall not thereafter:

[1] Represent another person in the same or a substantially related matter in which that person’s interests are materially adverse to the interests of the former client unless the former client consents, preferably in writing, after consultation; or

[2] Use information relating to the representation to the disadvantage of the former client except as Rule 156 would permit with respect to a client or when the information has become generally known.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 160 Imputed Disqualification: General Rule

[1] While lawyers are associated in a firm, none of them shall knowingly represent a client when any one of them practicing alone would be prohibited from doing so by Rules 157, 158(3), 159 or 168.

[2] When a lawyer becomes associated with a firm, the firm may not knowingly represent a person in the same or a substantially related matter in which that lawyer, or a firm with which the lawyer was associated, had previously represented a client whose interests are materially adverse to that person and about whom the lawyer had acquired information protected by Rules 156 and 159(2) that is material to the matter.

[3] When a lawyer has terminated an association with a firm, the firm is not prohibited from thereafter representing a person with interests materially adverse to those of a client represented by the formerly associated lawyer unless:

(a) The matter is the same or substantially related to that in which the formerly associated lawyer represented the client; and

(b) Any lawyer remaining in the firm has information protected by Rules 156 and 159(2) that is material to the matter.

[4] A disqualification prescribed by this Rule may be waived by the affected client under the conditions stated in Rule 157.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 161 Successive Government and Private Employment

[1] Except as law may otherwise expressly permit, a lawyer shall not represent a private client in connection with a matter in which the lawyer participated personally and substantially as a public officer or employee, unless the appropriate government agency consents after consultation. No lawyer in a firm with which that lawyer is associated may knowingly undertake or continue representation in such a matter unless:

(a) The disqualified lawyer is screened from any participation in the matter and is apportioned no part of the fee therefrom; and

(b) Written notice is promptly given to the appropriate government agency to enable it to ascertain compliance with the provisions of this rule.

[2] Except as law may otherwise expressly permit, a lawyer having information that the lawyer knows is confidential government information about a person acquired when the lawyer was a public officer or employee, may not represent a private client whose interests are adverse to that person in a matter in which the information could be used to the material disadvantage of that person. A firm with which that lawyer is associated may undertake or continue representation in the matter only if the disqualified lawyer is screened from any participation in the matter and is apportioned no part of the fee therefrom.

[3] Except as law may otherwise expressly permit, a lawyer serving as a public officer or employee shall not:

(a) Participate in a matter in which the lawyer participated personally and substantially while in private practice or nongovernmental employment, unless under applicable law no one is, or by lawful delegation may be, authorized to act in the lawyer’s stead in the matter; or

(b) Negotiate for private employment with any person who is involved as a party or as attorney for a party in a matter in which the lawyer is participating personally and substantially.

[4] As used in this Rule, the term  “matter” includes:

(a) Any judicial or other proceeding, application, request for a ruling or other determination, contract, claim, controversy, investigation, charge, accusation, arrest or other particular matter involving a specific party or parties; and

(b) Any other matter covered by the conflict of interest rules of the appropriate government agency.

[5] As used in this Rule, the term  “confidential government information” means information which has been obtained under governmental authority and which, at the time this Rule is applied, the government is prohibited by law from disclosing to the public or has a legal privilege not to disclose, and which is not otherwise available to the public.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdiction]

Rule 162 Former Judge or Arbitrator

[1] Except as stated in subsection 4, a lawyer shall not represent anyone in connection with a matter in which the lawyer participated personally and substantially as a judge or other adjudicative officer, arbitrator or law clerk to such a person, unless all parties to the proceeding consent after disclosure.

[2] A lawyer shall not negotiate for employment with any person who is involved as a party or as attorney for a party in a matter in which the lawyer is participating personally and substantially as a judge or other adjudicative officer, or arbitrator. A lawyer serving as a law clerk to a judge, other adjudicative officer or arbitrator may negotiate for employment with a party or attorney involved in a matter in which the clerk is participating personally and substantially, but only after the lawyer has notified the judge, other adjudicative officer or arbitrator.

[3] If a lawyer is disqualified by subsection 1, no lawyer in a firm with which that lawyer is associated may knowingly undertake or continue representation in the matter unless:

(a) The disqualified lawyer is screened from any participation in the matter and is apportioned no part of the fee therefrom; and

(b) Written notice is promptly given to the appropriate tribunal to enable it to ascertain compliance with the provisions of this rule.

[4] An arbitrator selected as a partisan of a party in a multi-member arbitration panel is not prohibited from subsequently representing that party.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 163 Organization as Client

[1] A lawyer employed or retained by an organization represents the organization acting through its duly authorized constituents.

[2] If a lawyer for an organization knows that an officer, employee or other person associated with the organization is engaged in action, intends to act or refuses to act in a matter related to the representation that is a violation of a legal obligation to the organization, or a violation of law which reasonably might be imputed to the organization, and is likely to result in substantial injury to the organization, the lawyer shall proceed as is reasonably necessary in the best interest of the organization. In determining how to proceed, the lawyer shall give due consideration to the seriousness of the violation and its consequences, the scope and nature of the lawyer’s representation, the responsibility in the organization and the apparent motivation of the person involved, the policies of the organization concerning such matters and any other relevant considerations. Any measures taken shall be designed to minimize disruption of the organization and the risk of revealing information relating to the representation to persons outside the organization. Such measures may include among others:

(a) Asking reconsideration of the matter;

(b) Advising that a separate legal opinion on the matter be sought for presentation to appropriate authority in the organization; and

(c) Referring the matter to higher authority in the organization, including, if warranted by the seriousness of the matter, referral to the highest authority that can act in behalf of the organization as determined by applicable law.

[3] If, despite the lawyer’s efforts in accordance with subsection 2, the highest authority that can act on behalf of the organization insists upon action, or a refusal to act, that is clearly a violation of law and is likely to result in substantial injury to the organization, the lawyer may resign in accordance with Rule 166.

[4] In dealing with an organization’s directors, officers, employees, members, shareholders or other constituents, a lawyer shall explain the identity of the client when it is apparent that the organization’s interests are adverse to those of the constituents with whom the lawyer is dealing.

[5] A lawyer representing an organization may also represent any of its directors, officers, employees, members, shareholders or other constituents, subject to the provisions of Rule 157. If the organization’s consent to the dual representation is required by Rule 157, the consent shall be given by an appropriate official of the organization other than the individual who is to be represented, or by the shareholders.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 164 Client Under a Disability

[1] When a client’s ability to make adequately considered decisions in connection with the representation is impaired, whether because of minority, mental disability or for some other reason, the lawyer shall, as far as reasonably possible, maintain a normal client-lawyer relationship with the client.

[2] A lawyer may seek the appointment of a guardian or take other protective action with respect to a client, only when the lawyer reasonably believes that the client cannot adequately act in the client’s own interest.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 165 Safekeeping Property

[1] A lawyer shall hold property of clients or third persons that is in a lawyer’s possession in connection with a representation separate from the lawyer’s own property. Funds shall be kept in a separate account maintained in the state where the lawyer’s office is situated, or elsewhere with the consent of the client or third person. Other property shall be identified as such and appropriately safeguarded. Complete records of such account funds and other property shall be kept by the lawyer and shall be preserved for a period of seven years after termination of the representation.

[2] Upon receiving funds or other property in which a client or third person has an interest, a lawyer shall promptly notify the client or third person. Except as stated in this Rule or otherwise permitted by law or by agreement with the client, a lawyer shall promptly deliver to the client or third person any funds or other property that the client or third person is entitled to receive and, upon request by the client or third person, shall promptly render a full accounting regarding such property.

[3] When in the course of representation a lawyer is in possession of property in which both the lawyer and another person claim interests, the property shall be kept separate by the lawyer until there is an accounting and severance of their interests. If a dispute arises concerning their respective interests, the portion in dispute shall be kept separate by the lawyer until the dispute is resolved.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 166 Declining or Terminating Representation

[1] Except as stated in subsection 3, a lawyer shall not represent a client or, where representation has commenced, shall withdraw from the representation of a client if:

(a) The representation will result in violation of the rules of professional conduct or other law;

(b) The lawyer’s physical or mental condition materially impairs the lawyer’s ability to represent the client; or

(c) The lawyer is discharged.

[2] Except as stated in subsection 3, a lawyer may withdraw from representing a client if withdrawal can be accomplished without material adverse effect on the interests of the client, or if:

(a) The client persists in a course of action involving the lawyer’s services that the lawyer reasonably believes is criminal or fraudulent;

(b) The client has used the lawyer’s services to perpetrate a crime or fraud;

(c) A client insists upon pursuing an objective that the lawyer considers repugnant or imprudent;

(d) The client fails substantially to fulfill an obligation to the lawyer regarding the lawyer’s services and has been given reasonable warning that the lawyer will withdraw unless the obligation is fulfilled;

(e) The representation will result in an unreasonable financial burden on the lawyer or has been rendered unreasonably difficult by the client; or

(f) Other good cause for withdrawal exists.

[3] When ordered to do so by a tribunal, a lawyer shall continue representation notwithstanding good cause for terminating the representation.

[4] Upon termination of representation, a lawyer shall take steps to the extent reasonably practicable to protect a client’s interests, such as giving reasonable notice to the client, allowing time for employment of other counsel, surrendering papers and property to which the client is entitled and refunding any advance payment of fee that has not been earned. The lawyer may retain papers relating to the client to the extent permitted by other law.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

COUNSELOR

Rule 167 Advisor

In representing a client, a lawyer shall exercise independent professional judgment and render candid advice. In rendering advice, a lawyer may refer not only to law but to other considerations such as moral, economic, social and political factors, that may be relevant to the client’s situation.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 168 Intermediary

[1] A lawyer may act as intermediary between clients if:

(a) The lawyer consults with each client concerning the implications of the common representation, including the advantages and risks involved, and the effect on the attorney-client privileges, and obtains each client’s consent to the common representation;

(b) The lawyer reasonably believes that the matter can be resolved on terms compatible with the clients’ best interests, that each client will be able to make adequately informed decisions in the matter and that there is little risk of material prejudice to the interests of any of the clients if the contemplated resolution is unsuccessful; and

(c) The lawyer reasonably believes that the common representation can be undertaken impartially and without improper effect on other responsibilities the lawyer has to any of the clients.

[2] While acting as intermediary, the lawyer shall consult with each client concerning the decisions to be made and the considerations relevant in making them, so that each client can make adequately informed decisions.

[3] A lawyer shall withdraw as intermediary if any of the clients so requests, or if any of the conditions stated in subsection 1 is no longer satisfied. Upon withdrawal, the lawyer shall not continue to represent any of the clients in the matter that was the subject of the intermediation.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 169 Evaluation for Use by Third Persons

[1] A lawyer may undertake an evaluation of a matter affecting a client for the use of someone other than the client if:

(a) The lawyer reasonably believes that making the evaluation is compatible with other aspects of the lawyer’s relationship with the client; and

(b) The client consents after consultation.

[2] Except as disclosure is required in connection with a report of an evaluation, information relating to the evaluation is otherwise protected by Rule 156.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

ADVOCATE

Rule 170 Meritorious Claims and Contentions

A lawyer shall not bring or defend a proceeding, or assert or controvert an issue therein, unless there is a basis for doing so that is not frivolous, which includes a good faith argument for an extension, modification or reversal of existing law. A lawyer for the defendant in a criminal proceeding, or the respondent in a proceeding that could result in incarceration, may nevertheless so defend the proceeding as to require that every element of the case be established.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 171 Expediting Litigation

[1] A lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to expedite litigation consistent with the interests of the client.

[2] The duty stated in subsection 1 does not preclude a lawyer from granting a reasonable request from opposing counsel for an accommodation, such as an extension of time, or from disagreeing with a client’s wishes on administrative and tactical matters, such as scheduling depositions, the number of depositions to be taken, and the frequency and use of written discovery requests.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 172 Candor Toward the Tribunal

[1] A lawyer shall not knowingly:

(a) Make a false statement of material fact or law to a tribunal;

(b) Fail to disclose a material fact to a tribunal when disclosure is necessary to avoid assisting a criminal or fraudulent act by the client;

(c) Fail to disclose to the tribunal legal authority in the controlling jurisdiction known to the lawyer to be directly adverse to the position of the client and not disclosed by opposing counsel; or

(d) Offer evidence that the lawyer knows to be false. If a lawyer has offered material evidence and comes to know of its falsity, the lawyer shall take reasonable remedial measures.

[2] The duties stated in subsection 1 continue to the conclusion of the proceeding, and apply even if compliance requires disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 156.

[3] A lawyer may refuse to offer evidence that the lawyer reasonably believes is false.

[4] In an ex parte proceeding, a lawyer shall inform the tribunal of all material facts known to the lawyer which will enable the tribunal to make an informed decision, whether or not the facts are adverse.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 173 Fairness to Opposing Party and Counsel

A lawyer shall not:

[1] Unlawfully obstruct another party’s access to evidence or unlawfully alter, destroy or conceal a document or other material having potential evidentiary value. A lawyer shall not counsel or assist another person to do any such act;

[2] Falsify evidence, counsel or assist a witness to testify falsely, or offer an inducement to a witness that is prohibited by law;

[3] Knowingly disobey an obligation under the rules of a tribunal except for an open refusal based on an assertion that no valid obligation exists;

[4] In pretrial procedure, make a frivolous discovery request or fail to make reasonably diligent effort to comply with a legally proper discovery request by an opposing party;

[5] In trial, allude to any matter that the lawyer does not reasonably believe is relevant or that will not be supported by admissible evidence, assert personal knowledge of facts in issue except when testifying as a witness, or state a personal opinion as to the justness of a cause, the credibility of a witness, the culpability of a civil litigant or the guilt or innocence of an accused; or

[6] Request a person other than a client to refrain from voluntarily giving relevant information to another party unless:

(a) The person is a relative or an employee or other agent of a client; and

(b) The lawyer reasonably believes that the person’s interests will not be adversely affected by refraining from giving such information.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 174 Impartiality and Decorum of the Tribunal

A lawyer shall not:

[1] Seek to influence a judge, juror, prospective juror or other official by means prohibited by law;

[2] Communicate ex parte with such a person except as permitted by law; or

[3] Engage in conduct intended to disrupt a tribunal.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 175 Relations with Opposing Counsel

When a lawyer knows the identity of a lawyer representing an opposing party, he or she should not take advantage of the lawyer by causing any default or dismissal to be entered without first inquiring about the opposing lawyer’s intention to proceed.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 176 Relations with Jury

[1] A member of the state bar should scrupulously abstain from all acts, comments and attitudes calculated to curry favor with any juror, such as fawning, flattery, actual or pretended solicitude for the juror’s comfort or convenience, or the like. Before and during the trial, he or she should avoid conversing or otherwise communicating with a juror on any subject whether pertaining to the case or not.

[2] A member of the state bar should disclose to the judge and opposing counsel any information of which he or she is aware that a juror or a prospective juror has or may have any interest, direct or indirect, in the outcome of the case, or is acquainted or connected in any manner with any lawyer in the case or any partner or associate or employee of the lawyer, or with any litigant, or with any person who has appeared or is expected to appear as a witness, unless the judge and opposing counsel have previously been made aware thereof by voir dire examination or otherwise.

[3] Subject to any limitation imposed by law it is a lawyer’s right, after the jury has been discharged, to interview the jurors to determine whether their verdict is subject to any legal challenge. The scope of the interview should be restricted and caution should be used to avoid embarrassment to any juror or to influence his or her action in any subsequent jury service.

[4]

(a) Before the jury is sworn to try the cause, a lawyer may investigate the prospective jurors to ascertain any basis for challenge, provided that a lawyer or the lawyer’s employees or independent contractors may not, at any time before the commencement of the trial, conduct or authorize any investigation of the prospective jurors, through any means which are calculated or likely to lead to communication with prospective jurors of any allegations or factual circumstances relating to the case at issue.

(b) Conduct prohibited by this rule includes, but is not limited to, any direct or indirect communication with a prospective juror, a member of the juror’s family, an employer, or any other person which may lead to direct or indirect communication with a prospective juror.

(c) Any violation of this rule which results in a mistrial, retrial or other remedial proceedings shall be ground for the imposition of sanctions by the court against the offending attorney including, but not limited to, the award of a reasonable attorney’s fee and costs incurred by the opposing party.

(d) Any lawyer who is determined by the court or any disciplinary committee of the State Bar of Nevada to have intentionally violated this Rule shall be subject to disciplinary action, which may include disbarment.

Rule 177 Trial Publicity

[1] A lawyer shall not make an extrajudicial statement that a reasonable person would expect to be disseminated by means of public communication if the lawyer knows or reasonably should know that it will have a substantial likelihood of materially prejudicing an adjudicative proceeding; however, a lawyer may make a statement if the lawyer has a good faith belief, based upon the totality of facts and circumstances known to the lawyer at the time, that the content of the statement is admissible at a subsequent hearing or trial or properly arguable from anticipated evidence; and

(a) The statement protects the public from substantial future harm; or

(b) The statement is one that a reasonable lawyer would believe is required to protect a client from the substantial undue prejudicial effect of publicity not initiated by the lawyer or the lawyer’s client and is limited to such information as is necessary to mitigate the adverse publicity; or

(c) The statement reveals governmental corruption or abuse of power.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 178 Lawyer as Witness

[1] A lawyer shall not act as advocate at a trial in which the lawyer is likely to be a necessary witness except where:

(a) The testimony relates to an uncontested issue;

(b) The testimony relates to the nature and value of legal services rendered in the case; or

(c) Disqualification of the lawyer would work substantial hardship on the client.

[2] A lawyer may act as advocate in a trial in which another lawyer in the lawyer’s firm is likely to be called as a witness unless precluded from doing so by Rule 157 or Rule 159.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 179 Special Responsibilities of a Prosecutor

The prosecutor in a criminal case shall:

[1] Refrain from prosecuting a charge that the prosecutor knows is not supported by probable cause;

[2] Make reasonable efforts to assure that the accused has been advised of the right to, and the procedure for obtaining, counsel and has been given reasonable opportunity to obtain counsel;

[3] Not seek to obtain from an unrepresented accused a waiver of important pretrial rights, such as the right to a preliminary hearing;

[4] Make timely disclosure to the defense of all evidence or information known to the prosecutor that tends to negate the guilt of the accused or mitigates the offense, and, in connection with sentencing, disclose to the defense and to the tribunal all unprivileged mitigating information known to the prosecutor, except when the prosecutor is relieved of this responsibility by a protective order of the tribunal; and

[5] Exercise reasonable care to prevent investigators, law enforcement personnel, employees or other persons assisting or associated with the prosecutor in a criminal case from making an extrajudicial statement that the prosecutor would be prohibited from making under Rule 177.
    

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 180 Advocate in Nonadjudicative Proceedings

A lawyer representing a client before a legislative or administrative tribunal in a nonadjudicative proceeding shall disclose that the appearance is in a representative capacity and shall conform to the provisions of Rules 172(1) through (3), 173(1) through (3), and 174.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

TRANSACTIONS WITH PERSONS OTHER THAN CLIENT

Rule 181 Truthfulness in Statements to Others

In the course of representing a client a lawyer shall not knowingly:

[1] Make a false statement of material fact or law to a third person; or

[2] Fail to disclose a material fact to a third person when disclosure is necessary to avoid assisting a criminal or fraudulent act by a client, unless disclosure is prohibited by Rule 156.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 182 Communication with Person Represented by Counsel

In representing a client, a lawyer shall not communicate about the subject of the representation with a party the lawyer knows to be represented by another lawyer in the matter, unless the lawyer has the consent of the other lawyer or is authorized by law to do so.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 183 Dealing with Unrepresented Person

In dealing on behalf of a client with a person who is not represented by counsel, a lawyer shall not state or imply that the lawyer is disinterested. When the lawyer knows or reasonably should know that the unrepresented person misunderstands the lawyer’s role in the matter, the lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to correct the misunderstanding.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 184 Respect for the Rights of Third Persons

In representing a client, a lawyer shall not use means that have no substantial purpose other than to embarrass, delay, or burden a third person, or use methods of obtaining evidence that violate the legal rights of such a person.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

LAW FIRMS AND ASSOCIATIONS

Rule 185 Responsibility

[1] A partner in a law firm shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable assurance that all lawyers in the firm conform to the rules of professional conduct.

[2] A lawyer having direct supervisory authority over another lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the other lawyer conforms to the rules of professional conduct.

[3] A lawyer shall be responsible for another lawyer’s violation of the rules of professional conduct if:

(a) The lawyer orders or, with knowledge of the specific conduct, ratifies the conduct involved; or

(b) The lawyer is a partner in the law firm in which the other lawyer practices, or has direct supervisory authority over the other lawyer, and knows of the conduct at a time when its consequences can be avoided or mitigated but fails to take reasonable remedial action.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 186 Responsibilities of a Subordinate Lawyer

[1] A lawyer is bound by the rules of professional conduct notwithstanding that the lawyer acted at the direction of another person.

[2] A subordinate lawyer does not violate the rules of professional conduct if that lawyer acts in accordance with a supervisory lawyer’s reasonable resolution of an arguable question of professional duty.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 187 Responsibilities Regarding Nonlawyer Assistants

With respect to a nonlawyer employed or retained by or associated with a lawyer:

[1] A partner in a law firm shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable assurance that the person’s conduct is compatible with the professional obligations of the lawyer;

[2] A lawyer having direct supervisory authority over the nonlawyer shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the person’s conduct is compatible with the professional obligations of the lawyer; and

[3] A lawyer shall be responsible for conduct of such a person that would be a violation of the rules of professional conduct if engaged in by a lawyer if:

(a) The lawyer orders or, with the knowledge of the specific conduct, ratifies the conduct involved; or

(b) The lawyer is a partner in the law firm in which the person is employed, or has direct supervisory authority over the person, and knows of the conduct at a time when its consequences can be avoided or mitigated but fails to take reasonable remedial action.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 188 Professional Independence of a Lawyer

[1] A lawyer or law firm shall not share legal fees with a nonlawyer, except that:

(a) An agreement by a lawyer with the lawyer’s firm, partner, or associate may provide for the payment of money, over a reasonable period of time after the lawyer’s death, to the lawyer’s estate or to one or more specified persons;

(b) A lawyer who undertakes to complete unfinished legal business of a deceased lawyer may pay to the estate of the deceased lawyer that proportion of the total compensation which fairly represents the services rendered by the deceased lawyer; and

(c) A lawyer or law firm may include nonlawyer employees in a compensation or retirement plan, even though the plan is based in whole or in part on a profit-sharing arrangement.

[2] A lawyer shall not form a partnership with a nonlawyer if any of the activities of the partnership consist of the practice of law.

[3] A lawyer shall not permit a person who recommends, employs, or pays the lawyer to render legal services for another to direct or regulate the lawyer’s professional judgment in rendering such legal services.

[4] A lawyer shall not practice with or in the form of a professional corporation or association authorized to practice law for a profit, if:

(a) A nonlawyer owns any interest therein, except that a fiduciary representative of the estate of a lawyer may hold the stock or interest of the lawyer for a reasonable time during administration;

(b) A nonlawyer is a corporate director or officer thereof; or

(c) A nonlawyer has the right to direct or control the professional judgment of a lawyer.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 189 Unauthorized Practice of Law

[1] General rule.  A lawyer shall not:

(a) Practice law in a jurisdiction where doing so violates the regulation of the legal profession in that jurisdiction; or

(b) Assist another person in the unauthorized practice of law.

[2] Exceptions.  A lawyer who is not admitted in this jurisdiction, but who is admitted and in good standing in another jurisdiction of the United States, does not engage in the unauthorized practice of law in this jurisdiction when:

(a) The lawyer is authorized to appear before a tribunal in this jurisdiction by law or order of the tribunal or is preparing for a proceeding in which the lawyer reasonably expects to be so authorized;

(b) The lawyer participates in this jurisdiction in investigation and discovery incident to litigation that is pending or anticipated to be instituted in a jurisdiction in which the lawyer is admitted to

(c) The lawyer is an employee of a client and is acting on behalf of the client or, in connection with the client’s matters, on behalf of the client’s other employees, or its commonly owned organizational affiliates in matters related to the business of the employer, provided that the lawyer is acting in this jurisdiction on an occasional basis and not as a regular or repetitive course of business in this jurisdiction;

(d) The lawyer is acting with respect to a matter that is incident to work being performed in a jurisdiction in which the lawyer is admitted, provided that the lawyer is acting in this jurisdiction on an occasional basis and not as a regular or repetitive course of business in this jurisdiction;

(e) The lawyer is engaged in the occasional representation of a client in association with a lawyer who is admitted in this jurisdiction and who has actual responsibility for the representation and actively participates in the representation, provided that the out-of-state lawyer’s representation of the client is not part of a regular or repetitive course of practice in this jurisdiction;

(f) The lawyer is representing a client, on an occasional basis and not as part of a regular or repetitive course of practice in this jurisdiction, in areas governed primarily by federal law, international law, or the law of a foreign nation; or

(g) The lawyer is acting as an arbitrator, mediator, or impartial third party in an alternative dispute resolution proceeding.

[3] Interaction with Rule 42.  Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 2 of this rule, a lawyer who is not admitted to practice in this jurisdiction shall not represent a client in this state in an action or proceeding governed by Rule 42 unless the lawyer has been authorized to appear under Rule 42 or reasonably expects to be so authorized.

[4] Limitations.

(a) No lawyer is authorized to provide legal services under this rule if the lawyer:

(1) Is an inactive or suspended member of the State Bar of Nevada, or has been disbarred or has received a disciplinary resignation from the State Bar of Nevada; or

(2) Has previously been disciplined or held in contempt by reason of misconduct committed while engaged in the practice of law permitted under this rule.

(b) A lawyer who is not admitted to practice in this jurisdiction shall not:

(1) Establish an office or other regular presence in this jurisdiction for the practice of law;

(2) Solicit clients in this jurisdiction; or

(3) Represent or hold out to the public that the lawyer is admitted to practice law in this jurisdiction.

[5] Conduct and discipline.  A lawyer admitted to practice in another jurisdiction of the United States who acts in this jurisdiction pursuant to subsection 2 of this rule shall be subject to the Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct and the disciplinary jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Nevada and the State Bar of Nevada as provided in Rule 99.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 189.1 Registration of Private Attorneys Not Admitted to Nevada in Extra-judicial Matters

[1] Application of rule.

(a) This rule applies to a lawyer who is not admitted in this jurisdiction, but who is admitted and in good standing in another jurisdiction of the United States, and who provides legal services for a Nevada client in connection with transactional or extra-judicial matters that are pending in or substantially related to Nevada.

(b) This rule does not apply to work performed by a lawyer in connection with any action pending before a court of this state, any action pending before an administrative agency or governmental body, or any arbitration, mediation, alternative dispute resolution proceeding, whether authorized by the court, law, rule, or private agreement.

[2] Definitions.  For purposes of this rule, a ‘‘Nevada client’’ is a natural person residing in the State of Nevada, a Nevada governmental entity, or a business entity doing business in Nevada.

[3] Annual report.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a lawyer who is subject to this rule shall file an annual report, along with a reporting fee of $150.00, with the State Bar of Nevada at its Las Vegas, Nevada, office. The annual report shall encompass January 1 through December 31 of a single calendar year and shall be filed on or before January 31 of the following calendar year. The report shall be on a form approved by the State Bar of Nevada and include the following information:

(a) The attorney’s residence and office address;

(b) The courts before which the attorney has been admitted to practice and the dates of admission;

(c) That the attorney is currently a member in good standing of, and eligible to practice law before, the bar of those courts;

(d) That the attorney is not currently on suspension or disbarred from the practice of law before the bar of any court; and

(e) The nature of the client(s) (individual or business entity) for whom the lawyer has provided services that are subject to this rule and the number and general nature of the transactions performed for each client during the previous twelve (12)-month period. The lawyer shall not disclose the identity of any clients or any information that is confidential or subject to attorney-client privilege.

[4] Failure to file report.  Failure to timely file the report described in subsection 3 of this rule may be grounds for discipline under applicable supreme court rules and prosecution under applicable state laws. The failure to file a timely report shall result in the imposition of a fine of not more than $500.00.

[5] Discipline.  A lawyer who must file an annual report under this rule shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the courts and disciplinary boards of this state with respect to the law of this state governing the conduct of attorneys to the same extent as a member of the State Bar of Nevada. He or she shall familiarize himself or herself and comply with the standards of professional conduct required of members of the State Bar of Nevada and shall be subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the State Bar of Nevada. The rules of the Supreme Court of Nevada shall govern in any investigation or proceeding conducted by the State Bar of Nevada under this rule.

[6] Confidentiality.  The State Bar of Nevada shall not disclose annual reports filed under this rule to any third parties unless necessary for disciplinary investigation or criminal prosecution for the unauthorized practice of law.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 190 Restrictions on Right to Practice

A lawyer shall not participate in offering or making:

[1] A partnership or employment agreement that restricts the rights of a lawyer to practice after termination of the relationship, except an agreement concerning benefits upon retirement; or

[2] An agreement in which a restriction on the lawyer’s right to practice is part of the settlement of a controversy between private parties.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

PUBLIC SERVICE

Rule 191 Pro Bono Publico Service

[1] Professional responsibility.  A lawyer should render public interest legal service. A lawyer may discharge this responsibility by any of the following:

(a) Providing a minimum of twenty (20) hours yearly of professional services at no fee to:

(1) persons of limited means;

(2) a public service, charitable group or organization providing pro bono services;

(3) by service in activities for improving the law, the legal system or profession; or

(4) service in connection with law-related education sponsored by the State Bar of Nevada or the Nevada Bar Foundation;

(b) Providing a minimum of sixty (60) hours yearly of professional services at reduced fee levels to persons of limited means; or

(c) Contributing a minimum of $500 yearly to an organization or group providing pro bono services.

(d) When pro bono service is performed for an individual without a fee or at a substantially reduced fee, the fee shall be agreed to in writing at the inception of the representation and refer to this rule. Legal services written off as bad debts do not qualify as pro bono service.

[2] Reporting; discharge of professional responsibility.  All members shall complete an Annual Pro Bono Reporting Form, indicating services performed under this rule, to be submitted to the state bar annually on a form to be provided by the state bar with the members’ fee statements. The professional responsibility to provide pro bono services as established under this rule is aspirational rather than mandatory in nature. Accordingly, the failure to render pro bono services will not subject a member to discipline.

[3] Voluntary pro bono plan.  The purposes of the voluntary pro bono plan are: (a) to make available legal services to those Nevadans who cannot otherwise afford them; and (b) to expand the present pro bono programs. To accomplish these goals the following committees are hereby created.

(a) District Court Pro Bono Committees.  In each judicial district, the Chief Judge of the District Court shall appoint a Pro Bono Committee consisting of representatives of various members of the bench and bar as well as pro bono services and community organizations of that judicial district. The responsibility of these committees is to determine and address the specific unmet legal needs of that jurisdiction by way of a plan to be submitted to the Supreme Court. Pursuant to subsection 4 of this rule, the Pro Bono Committee may establish a foundation. The foundations are authorized to receive funds paid in satisfaction of an order of any court entered in accordance with subsection 5 of this rule and to determine the allocation and use of such funds in a manner consistent with this rule. If no foundation is established, the Pro Bono Committee is authorized to receive such funds and determine their allocation and use in a manner consistent with this rule.

(b) Access to Justice Committee.  The Access to Justice Committee shall consist of attorneys and lay representatives of various pro bono programs, community organizations, and local bar associations. The Committee shall be a permanent committee that shall assist in the implementation of this rule as well as facilitate and support local efforts to improve the public’s access to justice. The Board of Governors shall appoint the members of the Committee, select its Chairperson, and oversee the development of the Committee’s charter.

[4] Foundations.  A district court Pro Bono Committee may establish a local foundation to actively promote the provision of civil legal services to disadvantaged persons and households within the district. A foundation established pursuant to this rule shall be created as a Nevada nonprofit corporation and is authorized to:

(a) Actively promote the observance of this rule within the district;

(b) Receive donations from members of the State Bar of Nevada and monies from the courts as provided in this rule;

(c) Distribute such funds to providers of pro bono and free or reduced fee civil legal services in the district and to public law libraries;

(d) Develop other new sources of funding and support for delivery of civil legal services;

(e) Support existing legal services and pro bono efforts and foster new projects to broaden the existing range of civil legal services; and

(f) Serve as an educational facilitator to make the community as a whole aware of the efforts being made to provide all Nevadans within the district with full access to the justice system.

[5] Payment of civil sanctions to fund pro bono programs or libraries.  Subject to the limitations of this rule, a court may direct that sanctions or fines imposed under NRS 1.210, N.R.A.P. 38, N.R.C.P. 11, J.C.R.C.P. 11, or like authority be paid to a nonprofit entity or law library specified below. The court’s discretion to direct payment of sanctions or fines to a nonprofit entity or law library, however, is limited to civil sanctions imposed against counsel, parties, witnesses or others appearing before the court and expressly excludes sanctions or fines imposed against a defendant in any criminal case. Payment may be directed only to the following:

(a) A nonprofit entity or committee designated pursuant to a voluntary pro bono plan described in subsection 3 above to serve the pro bono and access to justice needs either for the judicial district in which the judicial officer presides or, if serving outside his or her judicial district, where the case is heard; or

(b) A public law library or nonprofit entity associated with a public law library located either in the judicial district in which the judicial officer presides or, if serving outside his or her judicial district, where the case is heard; or

(c) To the Nevada Law Foundation or other statewide nonprofit entity designated by the state bar to serve pro bono and access to justice needs.

(d) The supreme court may also direct payment to such nonprofit entities or public law libraries located in the judicial district in which the matter before the supreme court originated or to any other public law library in the state.

[6] Limitation on authority to specify use of funds.  A judicial officer who orders payment of a sanction or fine pursuant to subsection 5 must not participate in the specific determination of which entity will receive the sanction or fine or of how that sanction or fine will be used by the nonprofit entity or law library designated to receive the funds. The judicial officer may, however, serve on the board or as an officer of a nonprofit entity created pursuant to this rule, or of a law library or nonprofit entity associated with a law library, provided that he or she does not participate in specific decisions regarding the use of any sanction or fine directed to the nonprofit entity or library by that judicial officer.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 192 Accepting Appointments

A lawyer shall not seek to avoid appointment by a tribunal to represent a person except for good cause, such as:

[1] Representing the client is likely to result in violation of the rules of professional conduct or other law;

[2] Representing the client is likely to result in an unreasonable financial burden on the lawyer; or

[3] The client or the cause is so repugnant to the lawyer as to be likely to impair the client-lawyer relationship or the lawyer’s ability to represent the client.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 193 Membership in Legal Services Organization

A lawyer may serve as a director, officer or member of a legal services organization, apart from the law firm in which the lawyer practices, notwithstanding that the organization serves persons having interests adverse to a client of the lawyer. The lawyer shall not knowingly participate in a decision or action of the organization:

[1] If participating in the decision would be incompatible with the lawyer’s obligations to a client under Rule 157; or

[2] Where the decision could have a material adverse effect on the representation of a client of the organization whose interests are adverse to a client of the lawyer.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 194 Law Reform Activities Affecting Client Interests

A lawyer may serve as a director, officer or member of an organization involved in reform of the law or its administration notwithstanding that the reform may affect the interests of a client of the lawyer. When the lawyer knows that the interests of a client may be materially benefited by a decision in which the lawyer participates, the lawyer shall disclose that fact but need not identify the client.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

INFORMATION REGARDING LEGAL SERVICES

Rule 195 Communications Concerning a Lawyer's Services

A lawyer shall not make a false or misleading communication about the lawyer or the lawyer’s services. A communication is false or misleading if it:

[1] Contains a material misrepresentation of fact or law, or omits a fact necessary to make the statement considered as a whole not materially misleading;

[2] Is likely to create an unjustified expectation about results the lawyer can achieve, or states or implies that the lawyer can achieve results by means that violate the rules of professional conduct or other law;

[3] Compares the lawyer’s services with other lawyers’ services, unless the comparison can be factually substantiated; or

[4] Contains a testimonial or endorsement.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 196 Advertising

[1] Subject to the requirements of Rule 195, a lawyer may advertise services through the public media, such as a telephone directory, legal directory, newspaper or other periodical, billboards and other signs, radio, television and recorded messages the public may access by dialing a telephone number, or through written communication not involving solicitation as prohibited by Rule 197.

These rules shall not apply to any advertisement broadcast or disseminated in another jurisdiction in which the advertising lawyer is admitted if such advertisement complies with the rules governing lawyer advertising in that jurisdiction and the advertisement is not intended primarily for broadcast or dissemination within the State of Nevada.

[2] Advertisements on the electronic media such as television and radio may contain the same factual information and illustrations as permitted in advertisements in the print media. The information shall be articulated by a voice, with no background sound other than instrumental music. The voice shall not be that of a celebrity whose voice is recognizable to the public. If a person appears as a lawyer in an advertisement for legal services, or under such circumstances as may give the impression that the person is a lawyer, such person must be a member of the State Bar of Nevada, admitted to practice and in good standing before the Supreme Court of Nevada, and must be the lawyer who will actually perform the service advertised or a lawyer associated with the law firm which is advertising. If a person appears in an advertisement as an employee of a lawyer or law firm, such person must be an actual employee of the lawyer or law firm whose services are advertised unless the advertisement discloses that such person is an actor. If an actor appears in any other role not prohibited by these rules, the advertisement must disclose that such person is an actor.

[3] All advertisements and written communications disseminated pursuant to these rules shall include the name of at least one lawyer or the lawyer referral service responsible for their content.

[4] Except as provided in this section, all advertisements shall contain the following disclaimer:  “The State Bar of Nevada does not certify any lawyer as a specialist or expert.” This disclaimer need not appear in advertisements in the public print media that contain no illustrations and no information other than that listed in subsections 12(a)‑(h) of this rule.

[5] There shall be no dramatizations, testimonials or endorsements in any advertisement in any medium. A lawyer’s advertisement, regardless of medium, must provide only useful, factual information presented in a nonsensational manner. This rule is intended to preclude the use of scenes creating suspense, scenes containing exaggerations or situations calling for legal services, and scenes creating consumer problems through characterization and dialogue ending with the lawyer solving the problem.

[6] Illustrations used in advertisements shall present information which can be factually substantiated. Provided that the scenes do not unduly appeal to any emotion or passion, permitted illustrations include scenes such as a lawyer working behind a desk, consulting with another attorney, working in the library, climbing courthouse steps, or other similar scenes reflecting activities commonly performed by lawyers.

[7] Every advertisement and written communication that indicates one or more areas of law in which the lawyer or law firm practices shall conform to the requirements of Rule 198.

[8] Every advertisement and written communication indicating that the charging of a fee is contingent on outcome or that the fee will be a percentage of the recovery shall contain the following disclaimer:  “You may have to pay the opposing party’s attorney’s fees and costs in the event of a loss.”

[9] A lawyer who advertises a specific fee or range of fees for a particular service shall honor the advertised fee or range of fees for at least 90 days unless the advertisement specifies a shorter period; provided that, for advertisements in the yellow pages of telephone directories or other media not published more frequently than annually, the advertised fee or range of fees shall be honored for no less than one year following publication.

[10] A lawyer shall not make statements describing or characterizing the quality of the lawyer’s services in advertisements and written communications. This provision shall not apply to information furnished to a prospective client at the person’s request or to information supplied to existing clients.

[11] A lawyer shall not advertise services under a name that violates the provisions of Rule 199.

[12] The following information in advertisements and written communications shall be presumed not to violate the provisions of Rule 195:

(a) Subject to the requirements of this rule and Rule 199, the name of the lawyer or law firm, a listing of lawyers associated with the firm, office addresses and telephone numbers, office and telephone service hours, and a designation such as “attorney” or “law firm.”

(b) Date of admission to the State Bar of Nevada and any other bars and a listing of federal courts and jurisdictions other than Nevada where the lawyer is licensed to practice.

(c) Technical and professional licenses granted by the state or other recognized licensing authorities.

(d) Foreign language ability.

(e) Fields of law in which the lawyer is certified or designated, subject to the requirements of Rule 198.

(f) Prepaid or group legal service plans in which the lawyer participates.

(g) Acceptance of credit cards.

(h) Fee for initial consultation and fee schedule, subject to the requirements of sections 8 and 9 of this rule.

(i) A listing of the name and geographic location of a lawyer or law firm as a sponsor of a public service announcement or charitable, civic or community program or event.

[13] Nothing in this rule prohibits a lawyer or law firm from permitting the inclusion in law lists and law directories intended primarily for the use of the legal profession of such information as has traditionally been included in these publications.

[14] A copy or recording of an advertisement or written or recorded communication shall be retained by the lawyer or law firm which advertises for four years after its last dissemination along with a record of when and where it was used.

[15] A lawyer shall not give anything of value to a person for recommending the lawyer’s services, except that a lawyer may pay the reasonable cost of advertising or written or recorded communication permitted by these rules and may pay the usual charges of a lawyer referral service or other legal service organization.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 196.5 Legal Service Information

[1] Each lawyer or law firm that advertises the availability of legal services shall have available in written form for delivery to any potential client a factual statement detailing the background, training and experience of each lawyer or law firm.

[2] The form shall be known as the “Lawyer’s Biographical Data Form” and shall contain the following fields of information:

(a) Full name and business address of the lawyer.

(b) Date and jurisdiction of initial admission to practice.

(c) Date and jurisdiction of each subsequent admission to practice.

(d) Name of law school and year of graduation.

(e) The areas of specialization in which the lawyer is entitled to hold himself or herself out as a specialist under the provisions of Rule 198.

[3] The form may also contain other information detailing the background, training and experience of each lawyer or law firm, including but not limited to:

(a) Names and dates of any legal articles or treatises published by the lawyer, and the name of the publication in which they were published.

(b) A good faith estimate of the number of jury trials tried to a verdict by the lawyer to the present date, identifying the court or courts.

(c) A good faith estimate of the number of court (bench) trials tried to a judgment by the lawyer to the present date, identifying the court or courts.

(d) A good faith estimate of the number of administrative hearings tried to a conclusion by the lawyer, identifying the administrative agency or agencies.

(e) A good faith estimate of the number of appellate cases argued to a court of appeals or a supreme court, in which the lawyer was responsible for writing the brief or orally arguing the case, identifying the court or courts.

(f) The professional activities of the lawyer consisting of teaching or lecturing.

(g) The names of any volunteer or charitable organizations to which the lawyer belongs, which the lawyer desires to publish.

(h) A description of bar activities such as elective or assigned committee positions in a recognized bar organization.

[4] A lawyer or law firm that advertises or promotes services by written communication not involving solicitation as prohibited by Rule 197 shall enclose with each such written communication the information described in sections 1 and 2 of this rule.

[5] Whenever a potential client shall request information regarding a lawyer or law firm for the purpose of making a decision regarding employment of the lawyer or law firm:

(a) The lawyer or law firm shall promptly furnish (by mail if requested) the written information described in sections 1 and 2 of this rule.

(b) The lawyer or law firm may furnish such additional factual information regarding the lawyer or law firm deemed valuable to assist the client.

(c) If the information furnished to the client includes a fee contract, the top of each page of the contract shall be marked  “SAMPLE” in red ink in a type size one size larger than the largest type used in the contract and the words  “DO NOT SIGN” shall appear on the client signature line.

[6] A copy of all information furnished to clients by reason of this rule shall be retained by the lawyer or law firm for a period of three years after last regular use of the information.

[7] Any factual statement contained in any advertisement or written communication or any information furnished to a prospective client under this rule shall not:

(a) Be directly or impliedly false or misleading.

(b) Be potentially false or misleading.

(c) Fail to disclose material information necessary to prevent the information supplied from being actually or potentially false or misleading.

(d) Be unsubstantiated in fact.

(e) Be unfair or deceptive.

[8] Upon reasonable request by the State Bar of Nevada a lawyer shall promptly provide proof that any statement or claim made in any advertisement or written communication, as well as the information furnished to a prospective client as authorized or required by these rules, is in compliance with section 7 of this rule.

[9] A statement and any information furnished to a prospective client, as authorized by sections 1, 2 and 3 of this rule, that a lawyer or law firm will represent a client in a particular type of matter, without appropriate qualification, shall be presumed to be misleading if the lawyer reasonably believes that a lawyer or law firm not associated with the originally retained lawyer or law firm will be associated or act as primary counsel in representing the client. In determining whether the statement is misleading in this respect, the history of prior conduct by the lawyer in similar matters may be considered.

Rule 197 Communications with Prospective Clients

[1] Direct contact with prospective clients.  Except as permitted pursuant to section 4 of this rule, a lawyer shall not solicit professional employment from a prospective client with whom the lawyer has no family or prior professional relationship, by mail, in person or otherwise, when a significant motive for the lawyer’s doing so is the lawyer’s pecuniary gain. The term  “solicit” includes contact in person, by telephone, telegraph or facsimile, by letter or other writing, or by other communication directed to a specific recipient.

[2] Direct or indirect written advertising.  Any direct or indirect written mail communication or advertising circular distributed to persons not known to need legal services of the kind provided by the lawyer in a particular matter, but who are so situated that they might in general find such services useful, shall contain the disclaimers required by Supreme Court Rule 196. The disclaimers shall be in a type size and legibility sufficient to cause the disclaimers to be conspicuous, and in a size at least as large as the largest of any telephone number appearing in the ad.

[3] Additional disclaimer on mailers or written advertisements or communications.  Direct or indirect mail envelopes, and written mail communications or advertising circulars shall contain, upon the outside of the envelope and upon the communication side of each page of the communication or advertisement, in legible type that is at least twice as large as the largest type used in the body of the communication, in red ink, the following warning:

NOTICE:  THIS IS AN ADVERTISEMENT!

[4] Target mail to prospective clients.  Written communication directed to a specific prospective client who may need legal services due to a particular transaction or occurrence is prohibited in Nevada within 45 days of the transaction or occurrence giving rise to the communication. After 45 days following the transaction or occurrence, any such communication must comply with sections 2 and 3 of this rule and must comply with all other Supreme Court Rules.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 198 Communication of Fields of Practice

A lawyer shall not communicate that the lawyer is a specialist or that he or she does or does not practice in particular fields of law, except in accordance with this Rule.

[1] A lawyer admitted to engage in patent practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office may use the designation “patent attorney” or a substantially similar designation.

[2] A lawyer engaged in admiralty practice may use the designation “admiralty,” “proctor in admiralty” or a substantially similar designation; and

[3] In addition to a designation permitted by preceding subsections 1 and 2, a lawyer may communicate that the lawyer’s practice is limited to the following or substantially similar fields of practice, and such others as are not false or misleading.

Administrative Agency Matters
Antitrust and Trade Regulation
Appellate Practice
Banking Law
Bankruptcy Law
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Not more than three designations, including those pursuant to subsections 1 and 2, above, are permitted under this Rule. A law firm may use more than three designations, provided each attorney in the firm from whom a designation is derived is identified together with his or her fields of practice.

(a) Designation of limitation of practice shall be only in the following manner:

(i) If the lawyer accepts only legal matters in the designated fields of practice, they shall be preceded by the words “Practice limited to . . .”; or

(ii) If the lawyer is practicing primarily in the designated fields of practice but also accepts other types of legal matters, the designated fields of practice shall be preceded by the words “Practicing primarily in . . .”.

(b) A communication in writing to the public of a field of practice permitted by subsection 3 of this Rule shall be accompanied by a prominent “Notice to the Public” in the following form:

Neither the State Bar of Nevada nor any agency of the State Bar has certified any lawyer identified here as a specialist or as an expert. Anyone considering a lawyer should independently investigate the lawyer’s credentials and ability.

(c) A lawyer shall not place a listing in the classified section of a telephone directory under a classification of “Attorneys,” “Attorneys & Counselors at Law,” or “Lawyers,” unless for each field of practice the lawyer meets the requirements of this Rule for communicating a limitation of practice.

(d) Prior to communication of a limitation of practice permitted by subsection 3 of this Rule, a lawyer shall comply with the following requirements each calendar year and so state in writing to the Board of Continuing Legal Education:

(i) The lawyer must have devoted at least 300 hours each year to each separate designated field of practice for each of the preceding two calendar years; and

(ii) The lawyer must have completed at least six hours of accredited continuing legal education in each designated field of the practice during the preceding calendar year. The general exemptions and carry-forward provisions of the MCLE Rules do not apply.

(iii) The first report of compliance may be made in 1985. In reporting under subsection (d)(i), a statement of compliance signed by the lawyer is sufficient. In reporting under subsection (d)(ii), the lawyer shall identify the specific courses and hours which apply to each designated field of practice. The report shall be public information.

(e) A lawyer may communicate the name of the state and federal courts in which the lawyer is permitted to practice.

(f) If a lawyer is unable to complete the hours of accredited continuing legal education during the preceding calendar year as required by this Rule, the lawyer may apply to the Board of Continuing Legal Education for an extension of time in which to complete the hours. For good cause the board may extend the time not more than six months.

(g) A lawyer who communicates a field of practice pursuant to this Rule shall keep time records to demonstrate compliance with preceding subsection (d). Such records shall be available to the State Bar Association and the Board of Continuing Legal Education on request.

[4] Temporary exemption from completion of the specific continuing legal education requirements imposed by this Rule may be sought and granted for exceptional, extreme, and undue hardship unique to the member by the Board of Governors or its designee.

[5] The Board of Governors of the State Bar shall be authorized to formulate and publish a set of guidelines to aid members of the Bar in complying with the requirements of this Rule.

This rule does not apply to listings placed by a lawyer or law firm in reputable law lists and legal directories that are primarily addressed to lawyers.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 199 Firm Names and Letterheads

[1] A lawyer shall not use a firm name, letterhead, or other professional designation that violates Rule 195. The firm name shall contain the names of one or more living, retired, or deceased members of the law firm. No trade names shall be used other than those utilized by non-profit legal services organizations; however, phrases such as ‘‘the law offices of’’ or ‘‘and associates’’ shall be permissible.

[2] A law firm with offices in more than one jurisdiction which has registered with the State Bar of Nevada under Rule 199.1 may use the same name in each jurisdiction. Identification of the lawyers in an office of the firm shall indicate the jurisdictional limitations of those not licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the office is located.

[3] The name of a lawyer holding public office shall not be used in the name of a law firm, or in communications on its behalf, during any substantial period in which the lawyer is not actively and regularly practicing with the firm. This provision does not apply to a lawyer who takes a brief hiatus from practice to serve as an elected member of the Nevada State Legislature when the legislature is in session.

[4] Lawyers may state or imply that they practice in a partnership or other organization only when that is the fact.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 199.1 Registration of Multijurisdictional Law Firms

[1] Applicability of rule.  All law firms having an office in Nevada and in one or more other jurisdictions shall register with the State Bar of Nevada and shall pay an annual fee of $500.00 for such registration.

[2] Definitions. For purposes of this rule

(a) “Law firm” means a solo practitioner or a group of lawyers.

(b) “Nevada client” means a natural person residing in the State of Nevada, a Nevada governmental entity, or a business entity doing business in Nevada.

(c) “Resident member” means a Nevada-licensed attorney who maintains a full-time presence in the Nevada office of the multijurisdictional firm.

[3] Procedure and requirements for registering.  An application for registration to practice under this rule, along with the appropriate fee, shall be filed with the executive director of the State Bar of Nevada, on a form supplied or approved by the State Bar of Nevada, at its Las Vegas, Nevada, office. The application shall include the following:

(a) The names and addresses of all attorneys employed by the firm, the jurisdictions in which each attorney is licensed, and verification that each attorney is in good standing in the jurisdictions in which each attorney is licensed;

(b) Any pending disciplinary action or investigation against an attorney employed by the firm;

(c) The address and telephone number of a permanent office located within the State of Nevada that will be maintained by the firm;

(d) The name, address, and telephone number of a member of the firm who shall be resident in the firm’s Nevada office and who shall be the designated agent for service of process in this state. The resident member of the firm in the Nevada office must be an active member in good standing of the State Bar of Nevada; and

(e) A certification that:

(1) The firm will maintain a permanent office in Nevada with a resident member of the firm who is also an active member in good standing of the State Bar of Nevada at all times the firm is practicing in Nevada and will notify the state bar of any change of status or address within thirty (30) days of the change in status or address;

(2) The firm agrees to disclose in writing to its Nevada clients whether all of its attorneys are licensed to practice in Nevada and, if any of its attorneys are not so-licensed, to disclose what legal work will be performed by attorneys not admitted to practice in this state. Upon request of the State Bar of Nevada, the firm shall provide documentation evidencing its compliance with these disclosure requirements;

(3) The firm agrees to maintain trust accounts in accordance with Rule 78.5, with all funds arising from any matter in Nevada maintained solely in those accounts. The firm shall identify the financial institution where the trust account has been established; and

(4) The firm agrees to comply fully with Rule 199.

[4] Disposition of application for registration.  The executive director of the state bar shall have thirty (30) days from receipt of the application to review the application and determine whether it has been completed and filed in compliance with the requirements of this rule. Upon approval of the application, the executive director shall notify the applicant and shall also give notice of the registration to the supreme court clerk and the district court clerk for the county in which the law firm’s Nevada office is located. If the application is incomplete, the executive director shall give the applicant written notification of the deficiencies in the application. The applicant shall have thirty (30) days from the date of mailing of the notice of the deficiencies to cure the deficiencies and complete the application. If the application is not completed within the allotted time, the executive director shall reject the application.

[5] Application or certificate containing false information.  An attorney who causes to be filed an application or certificate containing false information shall be subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the State Bar of Nevada with respect to such action and the firm shall be disqualified from registering to practice in Nevada.

[6] Violation of conditions.  If the State Bar of Nevada determines that the firm is in violation of the conditions set forth in subsection 3(e) of this rule, the executive director of the state bar may, upon twenty (20) days’ notice, revoke the registration and the right of the firm to practice in Nevada. The executive director shall notify the supreme court clerk and the district court clerk for the county in which the law firm’s Nevada office is located of the suspension.

[7] Renewal of registration.  On or before the anniversary date of the filing of the application with the State Bar of Nevada, a firm registered under this rule must renew its registration, providing current information and certification as required under subsection 3 of this rule. The renewal shall be accompanied by payment of an annual fee of $500.00.

[8] Failure to renew.  A law firm registered under this rule that continues to practice law in Nevada but fails to provide the proper information and certification or pay the renewal fees set forth in subsection 6 of this rule shall be suspended from practicing law in Nevada upon expiration of a period of thirty (30) days after the anniversary date. The executive director of the state bar shall notify the firm, the supreme court clerk and the district court clerk for the county in which the law firm’s Nevada office is located of the suspension.

[9] Reinstatement.  The firm may be reinstated upon the compliance with the requirements of subsection 6 of this rule and the payment of a late penalty of $100.00. Upon payment of all accrued fees and the late penalty, the executive director of the state bar may reinstate the firm and shall notify the firm, the supreme court clerk and the district court clerk for the county in which the law firm’s Nevada office is located of the reinstatement.

[10] Responsibilities of Nevada-licensed members.  The members of the firm who are admitted to practice in Nevada shall be responsible for and actively participate as a principal or lead attorney in all work performed for Nevada clients and for compliance with all state and local rules of practice. It is the responsibility of the Nevada-licensed members of the firm to ensure that any proceedings in this jurisdiction are tried and managed in accordance with all applicable procedural and ethical rules and that out-of-state members of the firm comply with Rule 42 before appearing in any proceedings that are subject to that rule.

[11] Confidentiality.  The State Bar of Nevada shall not disclose the application for registration to any third parties unless necessary for disciplinary investigation or criminal prosecution for the unauthorized practice of law.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

MAINTAINING THE INTEGRITY OF THE PROFESSION

Rule 200 Bar Admission and Disciplinary Matters

An applicant for admission to the bar, or a lawyer in connection with a bar admission application or in connection with a disciplinary matter, shall not:

[1] Knowingly make a false statement of material fact; or

[2] Fail to disclose a fact necessary to correct a misapprehension known by the person to have arisen in the matter, or knowingly fail to respond to a lawful demand for information from an admissions or disciplinary authority, except that this rule does not require disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 156.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 201 Judicial and Legal Officials

[1] A lawyer shall not make a statement that the lawyer knows to be false or with reckless disregard as to its truth or falsity concerning the qualifications or integrity of a judge, adjudicatory officer or public legal officer, or of a candidate for election or appointment to judicial or legal office.

[2] A lawyer who is a candidate for judicial office shall comply with the applicable provisions of the code of judicial conduct.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 202 Reporting Professional Misconduct

[1] A lawyer having knowledge that another lawyer has committed a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct that raises a substantial question as to that lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects, shall inform the appropriate professional authority.

[2] A lawyer having knowledge that a judge has committed a violation of applicable rules of judicial conduct that raises a substantial question as to the judge’s fitness for office shall inform the appropriate authority.

[3] This Rule does not require disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 156.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 203 Misconduct

It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to:

[1] Violate or attempt to violate the rules of professional conduct, knowingly assist or induce another to do so, or do so through the acts of another;

[2] Commit a criminal act that reflects adversely on the lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects;

[3] Engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation;

[4] Engage in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice;

[5] State or imply an ability to influence improperly a government agency or official; or

[6] Knowingly assist a judge or judicial officer in conduct that is a violation of applicable rules of judicial conduct or other law.

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]

Rule 203.5 Jurisdiction

A lawyer admitted to practice in this jurisdiction is subject to the disciplinary authority of this jurisdiction although engaged in practice elsewhere.     

[Comment][Narrative][Other Jurisdictions]