Volume 13, No. 26 | December 23, 2014

eye on ethics

Q: A potential client wants to speak with me about firing their current attorney and hiring me instead. Can I speak with them even though they're currently represented?

A: You can speak with the potential client. ER 4.2 only prohibits you from speaking with a represented person if you are doing so in representation of another client.


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member news

Consumers Get Free One-On-One Consultations From Volunteer Immigration Attorneys: Thirteen volunteer immigration attorneys came together on Monday, December 22 to offer free legal advice at an informational session and legal assistance clinic hosted by the State Bar of Arizona and its partner Univision Arizona. This access to justice program was organized to inform consumers, dispel myths, and combat consumer fraud related to immigration law and deferred action.

An estimated 550 consumers attended the 3-hour access to justice event and 286 families received one-on-one consultations by volunteer attorneys.

The State Bar of Arizona offers its sincerest appreciation to the volunteer attorneys who helped answer consumers' immigration law questions through this access to justice program. They include: Marysol Angulo, Hernandez Global; Emilia Banuelos, Banuelos Law Office; Seth Draper, Salvatierra Law Group; Judy Flanagan, Judy C. Flanagan, PC; Lisette Flores, Friendly House; Jaime Garcia, Garcia Law Group; Marni Guerrero, Guerrero Jefferies Law Group; Ezequiel Hernandez, Hernandez Global; Claudia Lopez, Law Office of Claudia P. Lopez, PLLC; Jose L. Penalosa, Penalosa & Associates; Cynthia J. Perez, Hammond Law Group; Juan Rocha, Rocha Law Office; and Ray Ybarra Maldonado, Law Office of Ray A. Ybarra Maldonado.

In the news

Scalia, Kagan: Common Ground Often Trumps Ideology: One is a sharp-tongued, self-described "wise guy" originalist, who believes the Constitution means today what it meant when it was first written. The other is a diplomatic former Harvard Law School dean who believes there must be "flexibility" in interpreting the nation's governing document. Although they are often at odds with each other in written opinions, U.S. Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Elena Kagan were full of warm praise for each other Monday, saying that their common ground often overrides their ideological differences on the nation's high court. More.

NYC Congressman to Plead Guilty: People familiar with plea negotiations say U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm of New York City plans to plead guilty to a federal tax evasion charge rather than go to trial in February. A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in federal court in Brooklyn. The Staten Island Republican is expected to enter the plea in a case stemming from an investigation of his campaign financing. More.

from the bar

State Bar Holiday Hours: The State Bar of Arizona will be closed at noon on Wednesday, December 24 through Friday, December 26 in observance of the Christmas holiday. Regular business hours will resume on Monday, December 29 at 8:30 a.m.

File Your State Bar Annual Statement and Dues Online: Your 2015 statement is available now for you to complete, review and submit online at www.azbar.org/fees. A paper statement will not be mailed to you. Payment can be made by credit card or E-check through the Bar's secure website. When you submit your statement and submit dues online, your receipt will include a temporary bar card for use until the permanent one is mailed to you. To avoid delinquency fees, your statement and fees must be postmarked or received in the State Bar office by 5 p.m. MST on February 2, 2015. Online submissions will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. MST on February 2, 2015. More.

Board Decides Not to Precertify CLE: After hearing comments from members and CLE providers, the Board of Governors has voted not to create a process for precertifying CLE providers. A recommendation to precertify had come from the CLE Task Force. You can read more about the task force and the decision here.

Become Involved in the Merit Selection Process: Apply for one of the Judicial Nominating Commissions and help select judicial candidates for appointment to the trial bench in Maricopa, Pima and Pinal Counties, or judicial candidates for appointment to the appellate bench. The application deadline has been extended to February 6, 2015. More.

Don't Miss the 2015 Family Law Institute: Attending the 2015 Family Law Institute is the best way to ensure you are completely up-to-date on the latest cases, legislation and other new developments in Arizona family law. This is your opportunity to share collective wisdom and to discuss cutting-edge legal strategies. Learn more here.

Court of Appeals Announces Pro Bono Representation Program for Civil Cases: The Arizona Court of Appeals launched a new program that seeks to improve access to justice for self-represented litigants while also creating opportunities for attorneys to brief and argue cases in the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals will identify specific civil cases in which one or more parties are self-represented and offer the litigant(s) in those cases an opportunity to be paired with a volunteer lawyer. Attorneys interested in arguing a case at the Court of Appeals are being recruited as volunteers for this pro bono program. More.

Arizona High School Mock Trial Program Needs You!: The Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education and the Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Arizona are seeking volunteer attorneys for the 2015 Mock Trial Tournament. If you would like to share your expertise about the law, along with your skills and experience as an attorney, the mock trial competition welcomes you! To coach a team or serve as a judge at either the March 7 or March 28 tournaments, please contact susan.nusall@azflse.org