Planning Ahead for Your Clients: Ethical Considerations
Speakers: Stan Hazlett, Office of the Disciplinary Administrator; Chuck Andres, Law Office of Charles J. Andres; John Gerstle, Retired Attorney, Hilton Head, SC.
9:15-9:45am – Registration and breakfast
9:45–10:35am – Panel: Chuck Andres & John Gerstle with comments by Stan Hazlett
Charles Andres will discuss - What are the ethical concerns that a lawyer must consider when planning for retirement and/or the closing of the law office including a) ethical obligations to clients and funds held in trust; b) file destruction procedures and/or transfer to new counsel; c) formal withdraw procedures from cases: d) achieving inactive status in good standing; e) office property sale and/or division; and f) the winding down of the corporate, tax and lease obligations.
John Gerstle will discuss - What is the role of the Supreme Court “Rule 221 Attorney” appointed to inventory the files of the inactive, disappeared, deceased, suspended, or disbarred attorney, and what authority should be granted “to protect the interests of the attorney and the attorney's clients” as it relates to giving notice to courts and active clients; client trust account transactions and disputes; and control/return of client files including a sample Order Appointing Rule 221 Attorney
10:35-10:45am – Break
10:45-11:35am – Panel Stan Hazlett with comments by Chuck Andres & John Gerstle
After a brief overview by Stan Hazlett, this session will a Q & A format where the panel will address audience questions concerning 1) instances leading to the appointment of a Rule 221 Attorney; 2) role of local Administrative Judge and the probate court; 3) practical advice on how to close a law practice including the ethics of succession plans and designation of an Agent under a DPOA; 4) role of the Client Protection Fund once Rule 221 is invoked; and 5) other related ethical issues.