Loyalty is critical to the attorney-client relationship. Clients rely on their attorneys to safeguard their interests, so they must be able to trust the attorney and feel comfortable providing complete information. Conflicts of interest—when a lawyer’s duty to one client conflicts with his or her duty to another client, or with the lawyer’s personal interest—can damage that relationship, and harm the law firm’s reputation. Learning to recognize a conflict and address it head-on goes a long way towards minimizing potential professional liability exposure.
This course, taught by Anne P. Ray, a member of Jenner & Block’s Professional Responsibility Practice Group, examines the many different ways conflicts of interest arise: among law firm clients, because of lateral hires, and even within corporate legal departments. The program will also address the recent rise in disqualification motions and the potential for legal malpractice claims resulting from conflicts of interest, as well as the use of waivers—both in advance and contemporaneous—to avoid unwanted outcomes.
The course covers the ABA model rules and the ethics landscape
As a member of the firm’s Professional Responsibility Practice Group, Ms. Ray has experience representing large, national and international law firms in defense of complex, high-stakes professional liability litigation at both the trial and appellate level. The underlying matters range from allegedly improper advice in opinion letters on tax shelters and gaming regulations to disputes over closely held corporations to allegations of litigation negligence. She has successfully argued numerous motions to dismiss in cases against law firms accused of breaching their ethical duties and fiduciary duties to their clients and third parties. She also has successfully resolved professional liability cases in mediation, both before and after a law suit was filed.
Ms. Ray’s active pro bono practice focuses on criminal defense in both federal and state court. She has tried a first degree murder case to jury verdict, has argued a habeas petition before the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and has negotiated plea and settlement agreements. Ms. Ray is also active in the community. She is a member of the Illinois Supreme Court Committee on Professional Responsibility and is Chair of the Chicago Bar Association’s Professional Responsibility Committee. She serves on the Board of Between Friends, a non-profit organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of domestic violence and building a community free of abuse, and on the Board of the Chicago Children’s Theater. She is also a member of the Chicago Council of the American Writer’s Museum.
Prior to joining Jenner & Block, Ms. Ray served as a law clerk for the Honorable James P. Hurley of the Superior Court of the State of New Jersey from 2003-2004 and as a court attorney for the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, Second Department from 2004-2006. During law school, Ms. Ray participated in the Washington, DC Congressional Clinic, where she served as a legal intern in the United States Senate for Senator Christopher J. Dodd.
This is a very good program and exemplifies Lawline's generally high standards and good choice of knowledgeable and organized teachers.