skip navigation

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Some portions of the collection may already be severely out of date, so please be cautious in your use of this material.

Kentucky Legal Ethics

1.10  Rule 1.10 Imputed Disqualification: General Rule

1.10:100  Comparative Analysis of Kentucky Rule

1.10:101   Model Rule Comparison

In 1999, the Kentucky Supreme Court amended KRPC 1.10.  It now contains much the same language as MR 1.10.  Exceptions include the addition of the last clause of MR 1.10(a) addressing personal conflicts, and paragraph (d) {KRPC 1.10(d)} and subparagraphs (d)(1) {KRPC 1.10(d)(1)} and (d)(2) {KRPC 1.10(d)(2)}, allowing for screening where the basis of the potential conflict is a former client of a lawyer presently at the firm.  [See Unusual Aspects of the Kentucky Ethics Rules, supra, at 0.1:104]

1.10:102   Model Code Comparison

DR 5-105(D) provided that "[i]f a lawyer is required to decline or to withdraw from employment under a Disciplinary Rule, no partner, or associate, or any other lawyer affiliated with him or his firm, may accept or continue such employment."

1.10.103  Definition of "Firm"

[See Abbreviations, References and Terminology, supra, 0.4:430.] See also KRPC 1.10, comment [1].

1.10:200  Imputed Disqualification Among Current Affiliated Lawyers

KRPC 1.10(a) requires that a lawyer in a firm may not "knowingly" represent a client when one of the other lawyers in the firm has been disqualified from representing that client by KRPC 1.7, KRPC 1.8(c), KRPC 1.9, or KRPC 2.2.

For purposes of this rule, a "firm" includes "lawyers in a private firm, and lawyers employed in the legal department of a corporation or other organization, or in a legal services organization." In addition, two lawyers sharing an office may or may not constitute a firm depending on whether they seem to hold themselves out as such.  KRPC 1.10, Comment [1].

A lawyer sharing office space with another attorney in a manner suggestive of one firm may not represent a client with an interest adverse to the other attorney&'s former client in the same or substantially similar matter, unless (1) the former client consents to the representation after consultation or (2) the other attorney is effectively screened from participation in the matter and the former client is given timely written notice.  KBA E-418 (2001)See also KBA E-387 (1995) (holding that a former "in house lawyer" may not represent a client in a matter which is the same or substantially related to a matter the lawyer handled "in house" in which the client&'s interests are adverse to the interests of the entity at which the lawyer was "in house"); KBA E-244 (1981) (clarifying that a partner or office-mate of an attorney for a planning and zoning commission may not represent clients applying for zoning changes in front of that board).

1.10:300  Removing Imputation by Screening

KRPC 1.10(d) allows a firm to screen lawyers who may be disqualified by reason of their representation of a former client at a previous law firm.

[See Removing Imputed Conflict of Migratory Lawyer, supra, at 1.9:310].

1.10:400  Disqualification of Firm After Disqualified Lawyer Departs

KRPC 1.10(b) governs whether a firm may represent the a person "with interests materially adverse to those of a client represented by the formerly associated lawyer and not currently represented by the firm."  The general rule is that a firm may represent such a client.  However, where the "matter is the same or substantially related" to a matter handled by the formerly associated lawyer, and any lawyer still in the firm has confidential information relating to the case (that protected by Rules 1.6 and 1.9(b)), the firm may not represent the new client.

1.10:500  Client Consent

KRPC 1.10(c) allows a client to waive disqualification, assuming the requirements of Rule 1.7 are met.