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A lawyer who becomes sexually involved with a client in a Divorce proceeding can take advantage of the client under-going emotional trauma. Thus, for example, an attorney who by representing one client adversely affects another client has a conflict of interest and is guilty of misconduct.
In particular, the American Bar Association (ABA), the largest professional association for attorneys, governs the Practice of Law through its establishment of rules of conduct.A lawyer's fiduciary duties arise from his status as a member of the legal profession and are expressed, at least in part, by the applicable rules of professional conduct.The word fiduciary in this quotation comes from the Latin word fiducia, meaning "trust"; as a fiduciary, then, the attorney acts as the trusted representative of the client.The ABA's Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility addressed this issue in 1992 by issuing a formal opinion (no. Although the opinion acknowledged that the Model Rules of Professional Conduct do not specifically address the issue of attorney-client sex, it argued that an attorney's sexual relationship with a current client "may involve unfair exploitation of the lawyer's fiduciary position and presents a significant danger that the lawyer's ability to represent the client adequately may be impaired, and that as a consequence the lawyer may violate both the Model Rules and the Model Code." Becoming sexually intimate with a client, the opinion adds, undermines the "objective detachment" necessary for Legal Representation because "[t]he roles of lover and lawyer are potentially conflicting ones." In addition, the opinion argued, attorney-client sex introduces a clear conflict of interest into a case, and it may also compromise Attorney-Client Privilege, the principle that ensures the confidentiality of lawyer-client communication.Any secrets revealed to an attorney by a client outside of their legal relationship may not be protected by attorney-client privilege. Many types of attorney misconduct involve a conflict of interest on the part of the attorney.A malpractice suit may result in loss of money or the ability to work with specific clients.Rule 8.4 of the Model Rules of Professional Conduct contains the following statements on attorney misconduct: It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to: (a) Violate or attempt to violate the Rules of Professional Conduct, knowingly assist or induce another to do so, or do so through the acts of another; (b) Commit a criminal act that reflects adversely on the lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects; (c) Engage in conduct involving dishonesty, Fraud, deceit or misrepresentation; (d) Engage in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice; (e) State or imply an ability to influence improperly a government agency or official; (f) Knowingly assist a judge or judicial officer in conduct that is a violation of applicable rules of judicial conduct or other law.Disciplinary action by a state bar association or other authority may include private reprimands; public censure; suspension of the ability to practice law; and, most severe of all, disbarment—permanent denial of the ability to practice law in that jurisdiction.The state supreme court is the final arbiter in questions of professional conduct in most jurisdictions.Some attorneys object to such rules, arguing that they interfere with their First Amendment rights to . If an attorney is related to another attorney as parent, child, sibling, or spouse, that attorney may not represent a client in opposition to the related attorney except when given consent to do so by the client. They bristle at the notion of state bar associations regulating the private affairs of consenting adults. "Sex Behind the Bar: Should Attorney-Client Sexual Relations be Prohibited? This type of conflict of interest has become increasingly common as more women enter the legal profession and the number of marriages between attorneys grows.