Ethics Screens for Lateral Hires

By: Anthony T. Verwey

Attorney mobility is more common now than ever in the legal community.  The pace of the practice of law sometimes results in small to mid-size firms failing to do the proper conflict checks and/or preparing an ethics screen for new hires.  It is critical that firms engaged in lateral hiring ensure that they are not creating a conflict of interest with the new hire or, if there is a potential for a conflict of interest, that an ethics screen that will withstand judicial scrutiny is in place.  A properly designed ethics screen should allow the hiring firm to fend off both attempts to disqualify counsel and charges of conflicts of interest which may be lodged with the Office of Disciplinary Counsel.  For more information on creating an ethics screen, please contact me.