Trends and Analysis for Successfully Transitioning Lateral Partners
into New Partnerships While Minimizing Risk and Reducing Potential Liabilities

Post-Departure Considerations.

Departing Partners And Potential Conflicts With Current And Former Clients: The Featured Role Of The “Substantially Related” Test In Two Recent Disqualification Decisions

In the space of fifteen months, the Northern District of Texas and the District Court of Delaware have each issued significant attorney disqualification orders. In both cases, the “substantially related” test regarding past and present representations had a featured role in the courts’ decisions to disqualify the same California law firm from significant patent cases. For departed partners and their new firms, these decisions serve as important reminders about the key factors to analyze before becoming adverse to former clients. More

Ethical Obligations Regarding the Use and Handling of a Law Firm’s Domain Name upon a Partner Departure and Change In the Firm’s Name

An interesting ethics issue is being considered by the Virginia State Bar with respect to whether and how a firm can continue to use its URL after a partner departure when the URL contained the former partner’s name in it and the firm’s name has changed.  At present, the Virginia State Bar Standing Committee on Ethics has issued a proposed Advisory Opinion on this issue, but is still seeking comment on this topic through February 28, 2014.  (See Virginia State Bar Proposed Legal Ethics Opinion No. 1873.)  While this proposed opinion does not originate in California, it will be instructive on handling similar issues that arise in California, given that the ethical rules that are the underpinnings of this proposed opinion are substantially similar to those in California. More