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.
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New Jersey Legal Ethics
1.17:100 Comparative Analysis of New Jersey Rule
RPC 1.17 was adopted on October 16, 1992. Unlike the Model Rule 1.17, paragraph (b) of RPC 1.17 allows the sale of an entire practice only when the sale does not create actual or potential conflicts of interest.
There is no direct counterpart in the New Jersey RPCs.
1.17:200 Traditional Rule Against the Sale of a Law Practice
• Primary New Jersey References: NJ Rule 1.17
• Background References: ABA Model Rule 1.17, Other Jurisdictions
• Commentary: ABA/BNA § 91:801, ALI-LGL § 60, Wolfram § 16.2.1
• NJ Commentary: Section 9:1, Michels, New Jersey Attorney Ethics (Gann Law Books, Newark, 2000)
For the protection of clients, retiring lawyers were for years not allowed to sell their practices or to receive any money from an attorney who took over the practice. This prohibition had been contained in Canon 34. With regard to lawyers who died, payments to their estates were forbidden unless these represented fees actually earned prior to death. See N.J. Advisory Comm. on Professional Ethics Op. 87 (Dec. 2, 1965). Thinking on this subject has changed, and RPC 1.17 and 5.4(a) now permit and control such payments.
1.17:300 Problems in Sale of Practice
[The discussion of this topic has not yet been written.]