On Demand

Ethics of Multi-Jurisdictional Practice

1h 16m

Created on December 14, 2019




The description "multi-jurisdictional practice" may conjure images of Big Law firm with offices around the country or around the globe. More likely, it describes solos or small firms or corporate in-house counsel (retained and salaried) seeking or serving clients in a different state than the one in which they are admitted. Typically, these are transactional attorneys whose clients acquire or dispose of assets in foreign jurisdictions, attorneys seeking to represent their clients in arbitrations or mediation, or Good Samaritans drawn inadvertently into multi-jurisdictional practice.

There are relatively few ethical issues particular to multi-jurisdictional practices, but there is an 800 pound gorilla in the waiting room: the Unauthorized Practice of Law (UPL), proscribed by Model RPC 5.5, and each state's identical or unique version of that Rule. Under the same or a similar name, UPL is also a crime in all fifty states, so wayward attorneys may receive discipline from their own bar and also be prosecuted by another state for something they did inadvertently or with good intentions.

This program, taught by former Ethics Committee chair and legal ethics attorney Marc Garfinkle, will examine the ethical rules which apply to multi-jurisdictional practice, when and how attorneys may appear in a foreign jurisdiction, and how attorneys can recognize when they are in danger of running afoul of the ethical rules. The course will also review some less-menacing ethical considerations, such as advertising and solicitation issues that beset many attorneys.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Discern when an attorney may appear as corporate or personal counsel without local counsel
  2. Apply to appear pro hac vice in a foreign state
  3. Consider when it is appropriate to retain local counsel or acquire bar membership in a foreign jurisdiction

This course originally appeared as a part of our December 2019 Bridge the Gap event.    

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