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Some portions of the collection may already be severely out of date, so please be cautious in your use of this material.

Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct

Comment - Rule 8.01

1. The duty imposed by this Rule extends to persons seeking admission or reinstatement to the bar as well as to lawyers. Hence, if a person makes a material false statement in connection with an application for admission or a petition for reinstatement, it may be the basis for subsequent disciplinary action if the person is admitted or reinstated, and in any event may be relevant in any subsequent application for admission or petition for reinstatement. The duty imposed by this Rule applies to a lawyer's own admission, reinstatement or discipline as well as that of others. Thus, for example, it is a separate professional offense for a lawyer to knowingly make a material misrepresentation or omission in connection with a disciplinary investigation of the lawyer's own conduct. Likewise, it is a separate professional offense for a lawyer to fail to respond to a lawful demand for information of a disciplinary authority inquiring into that lawyer's professional activities or conduct. Cf State Bar Rules, art. X, sec. 7(4). This Rule also requires affirmative clarification of any misunderstanding on the part of the admissions, reinstatement or disciplinary authority of which the person involved becomes aware.

2. This Rule is subject to the provisions of the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution and corresponding provisions of Article 1, Section 10 of the Texas Constitution. A person relying on such a provision in response to a specific question or more general demand for information, however, should do so openly and not use the right of nondisclosure as an unasserted justification for failure to comply with this Rule. Cf State Bar Rules, art. X, sec. 7(4).

3. A lawyer representing an applicant for admission or petitioner for reinstatement to the bar, or representing a lawyer who is the subject of a disciplinary inquiry or proceeding, is governed by the rules applicable to the client-lawyer relationship, including those concerning the confidentiality of attorney-client communications. If such communications are protected under Rule 1.05, the lawyer need not and should not disclose them under this Rule. See also Rule 8.03(c).