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LEGAL ETHICS INTRODUCTION Legal Ethics branch of moral science which treats of the duties which an attorney owes

s to the court, to his client, to his colleagues in the profession and to the public Four-fold duty of lawyers: 1. Duty to the court. 2. Duty to his client. 3. Duty to his colleagues in the profession (bar). 4. Duty to his profession. Sources of Legal Ethics: 1. Code of Professional Responsibility 2. Constitution Who has the power promulgate rules concerning the admission to the practice of law? The Supreme Court (Rules of Court) The Supreme Court can admit who can practice and who may be disbarred. 3. Statutes Scattered laws. Ex. Art. 1491, Par. 5 of the CC. If you are a lawyer, you cannot buy or acquire any property which is the subject of a litigation that you are handling. You might exercise moral ascendancy over your client. To purchase such property might tempt the lawyer into abusing whatever ascendancy the lawyer has. Art. 209, RPC. Betrayal of trust by an attorney. Liabilities are civil, criminal, and administrative. 4. Supreme Court Decisions Jurisprudence form part of the judicial system of the Philippines. 5. Treatises and Publications Public Officials who cannot practice law in the Philippines: 1. Judges and other officials or employees of the superior court 2. Officials and employees of the Office of the Solicitor General 3. Government Prosecutors 4. President, Vice President, Members of the Cabinet, their deputies, and assistants 5. Members of the Constitutional Commissions 6. Members of the Judicial Bar Council 7. Ombudsman and his deputies 8. All governors, city and municipal mayors * If lawyers act as executor and administrator, can they charge for legal fees? No. This is because the relationship established in this case is based on trust and confidence. If they charge fees, it may lead to a very tempting situation to the lawyer executor. The lawyer should put his interest over and above the estate. * The attorney-client privilege. Any communication given by the client to his lawyer cannot be disclosed by the lawyer even if compelled by the court. If the lawyer discloses the information, it is considered an unethical breach. The lawyer can be penalized. Bar Exam - assess entry level skills in order to practice law; determines ones legal knowledge Criticisms: 1. Theres no scientific basis. 2. Luck might get into the picture. 3. High cost of the Bar exams. Requisites to the Practice of Law (Villanueva case - prior to the case of Cayetano vs. Monsod): 1. Habituality 2. Compensation 3. Application of the law or legal knowledge/training 4. Existence of an attorney-client relationship Cayetano vs. Monsod explains the modern definition of the practice of law Practice of law - not limited to the conduct of cases in court. It means any activity, in or out of court, which requires the application of law, legal procedure, knowledge, training and experience. It covers a very broad spectrum of activity * Trial Lawyer vs. Practicing Lawyer Trial law is only one of the many facets of lawyering. All trial lawyers are practicing lawyers while not all practicing lawyers are trial lawyers. * Is an attorney-in-fact a lawyer? Not necessarily. He can be a lawyer or may not be a lawyer. He is a representative or agent of somebody authorized to do something in favor of the principal.


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* Who can be counsel de oficio? Any lawyer can be counsel de oficio. However in localities where members of the bar are not available, the court may appoint any person, resident of the province and of good repute for probity and ability, to defend the accused. * Who is an attorney ad hoc? He is a counsel of an absentee defendant. * Who is attorney of record? He is a lawyer whose name appears in the records of the case. * Why is attorney of record important? This is because if your name appears in the records of the case will show that you are the counsel of the defendant. All notices issued by the court will be sent to your address. Notification to the counsel is equivalent to notification to the client. * Who is a lead counsel? He is charged with the principal management and direction of the case. The other lawyers are considered the assisting or collaborating counsel. * Who is a house counsel? Is also known as the in house counsel/corporate lawyer. Acts as attorney for business though carried as an employee of that business and not as an independent lawyer. * How is an in house counsel different from an external counsel? An external counsel is retained by the company and may take charge of specific or particular legal matters. The external counsel is not an employee of the company but rather somebody hired on a retainer basis by the company. The in house counsel on the other hand is carried as an employee of a said business. * Can an in house counsel practice law on his own? It depends. If the employer allows it, then he can. It depends on the arrangement between the employee-lawyer and the employer. Amicus Curiae friends of the court - You can be an amicus curiae by invitation from the court or you can file a petition to become one especially when you have strong interest with regards to a certain case. Amicus Curiae Par Excellence bar associations who appear as friends of the Court Barrister somebody who has taken or is about to take the Bar exam. - In England, a barrister is a lawyer granted exclusive audience before the Supreme Court. Solicitor a government lawyer associated with the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG). - In England, a solicitor is a person defending suits in Courts of Chancery. (Courts of Chancery - court which administers equity and proceeding according to the forms and principles of equity) * What does the OSG do? The OSG represents the government in any litigation or any proceeding that involves the government. OSG lawyers represent the government. Basic requirements for Bar admission: 1. Citizen of the Philippines 2. At least 21 years old 3. Of good moral character 4. A resident of the Philippines 4 major parts of CPR: 1. Lawyer and society 2. Lawyer and legal profession 3. Lawyer and the courts 4. Lawyer and the client CHAPTER I: THE LAWYER AND SOCIETY CANON 1 - lawyers primary duty to society or state is to uphold the Constitution - lawyers should be law abiders and not law violators - lawyers oath is a sacred trust that lawyers must uphold and keep inviolable at all times - delay no man for money or malice - lawyers will be disciplined for disobeying legal orders or processes of courts - nonpayment of IBP dues will subject the offender to administrative liability The Lawyers Oath I, _____ of _____ do solemnly swear that I will maintain allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines; I will support its Constitution and obey the laws as well as the legal orders of the duly constituted authorities therein; I will do no falsehood, nor consent to the doing of any in court; I will not wittingly nor willingly promote or sue any groundless, false or unlawful suit, or give aid nor consent to the same; I will delay no man for money or malice, and will conduct myself as a lawyer according to


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the best of my knowledge and discretion, with all good fidelity as well to the court as to my clients; and I impose upon myself this voluntary obligation without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion. So help me God. Rule 1.01 - lawyer must constantly be of good moral character * Purpose of requirement of good moral character: (Dantes vs. Dantes) To protect the public To protect the public image of lawyers To protect prospective clients * unlawful conduct violation of the statutory prohibition on a government employee to engage in the private practice of his profession unless authorized by the Constitution or law, provided that such practice will not conflict or tend to conflict with his official functions * moral turpitude includes everything which is done contrary to justice, modesty or good morals * immoral conduct that conduct which is willful, flagrant, or shameless, and which shows a moral difference to the opinion of the good and respectable members of the community * Psychological incapacity of a lawyer does not necessarily make him an unfit member of the Bar. (Paras vs. Paras) * Immorality is not confined to sexual matters. (Advincula vs. Macabata) Rule 1.02 - defiance of law not to be abetted, nor acts lessening confidence in the legal system - duty to be performed within the law - respect for the law is gravely eroded when lawyers themselves engage in unlawful practices and brush aside the rules of the IBP formulated for their observance - preparation of a document contrary to law and morals is malpractice - all acts of lawyers which are unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful corrode public confidence in the legal system Rule 1.03 - Section 20(g) of Rule 138 It is the duty of an attorney --- not to encourage either the commencement or the continuance of an action or proceeding, or delay any mans cause from any corrupt motive or interest. - lawyers owe it to the court and to society not to stir up litigations - lawyers should not be an instigator of controversy but a mediator for concord and conciliator for compromise - appealing a case for purposes of delay is obstruction of justice * Barratry - offense of frequently exciting and stirring up quarrels and suits either at law or otherwise - the act of instigating suits causing people to file actions before the courts * Ambulance chasing more of a figurative chase - when one purposely looks for or purposely seeks victims of personal injury cases and convince these victims to file a case and offer your services to them as your lawyer - an ambulance chaser is somebody who frequents hospitals and morgues * Is ambulance chasing the same with barratry? No. Barratry can refer to any action. Ambulance chasing is limited to personal injury actions. * Is barratry unethical? Yes. Lawyers owe it to society to not unduly clog the court dockets. If an amicable settlement is possible, then avail of the amicable settlement. Litigation could mean more expenses not just monetary but it could waste the time, resources not just of the court but of the parties involved as well. * Is ambulance chasing ethical? No. It will unduly clog the court dockets. It instigates litigation before the courts. It provides lawyers the opportunity to abuse a very meritorious case of a person. Rule 1.04 - the nature of compromise agreement is such that a party must give up some of the rights that he has, in consideration of the same act on the part of the other side - Attorneys have authority to bind their clients - lawyers must encourage fair settlement - Attorneys fees not ground for disapproval of compromise - a lawyer cannot compromise without clients consent; exception: a lawyers has the exclusive management of the procedural aspect of the litigation including the enforcement of rights and remedies of the client CANON 2 - a lawyer in handling a case must see to it that he must do so with efficiency and convenience with the end view of maintaining the independence, integrity and effectiveness of the legal profession at all times Rule 2.01 - the cause of the defenseless or the oppressed, not to be rejected - legal aid is not a matter of charity, but a public responsibility


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* Who are the defenseless? Those who are not in a position to defend themselves due to poverty, weakness, ignorance or other similar reasons. * Who are the oppressed? Those who are victims of acts of cruelty, unlawful exaction, domination or excessive use of authority. * If a lawyer has a valid reason to decline engagement, then it is allowed. * If you labor under a conflict of interest, then a lawyer may decline engagement. Rule 2.02 - in case of non-acceptance of the case of the defenseless or oppressed, legal advice should still be rendered to safeguard their rights * If you have a panicky person standing in front of you, you may give immediate legal advice. To safeguard his right, you have given him something even if you have declined the engagement. Rule 2.03 - the practice of law is a profession and not a money-making trade - improper solicitation of legal business is prohibited - advertisement lowers the standards of profession - the best advertisement for a lawyer is a well-deserved reputation for competence, honesty and fidelity to private trust and public duty * The primary characteristics which distinguish the legal profession from business: 1. A duty of public service, of which the emolument is a by-product, and which one may attain the highest eminence without making much money. 2. A relation as an officer of court to the administration of justice involving thorough sincerity, integrity and reliability. 3. A relation to clients in the highest degree of fiduciary. 4. A relation to colleagues at the bar characterized by candor, fairness, and unwillingness to resort to current business methods of advertising and encroachment on their practice, or dealing directly with their clients. Rule 2.04 - to avoid any demeaning and degrading competition, lawyers as much as possible should be in unison in respecting such custom or tradition * How do you know the prescribed rate? In the IBP Chapters, there is a schedule of fees or rates. * If the circumstances so warrant for you to lower your legal fees, then you may do so. CANON 3 - lawyer may make known his legal services and he must do so only by using true, honest, fair, dignified and objective information or statement of facts * Can lawyers advertise? Generally, they are not permitted to advertise because the lawyers profession is not a business. * What are permitted: Ordinary calling cards Law lists Directory Legal articles but dont talk about a specific legal problem of a person Simple announcements that you have opened a law office Rule 3.01 - self-praises or false claims on qualifications or quality of legal services is unethical - any false pretense by a lawyer intended to defraud, mislead and deceive or tout on his qualifications or quality of his legal services is unethical --- whether done by him personally or through another with his permission - solicitation of cases is unethical either personally by the lawyer or through agents or brokers Rule 3.02 - no false name or misleading or assumed name shall be used in the firm name adopted - if a partner died, and the continued use of the name is desired by the surviving partners, the name of the deceased may still be used provided, in all communications of the law firm, there is an indication that said partner is already dead - a lawyer is not authorized to use in his practice of the profession a name other than the one inscribed in the Roll of Attorneys - name of a partner in law firm should be dropped if appointed as a judge - use of the firm name of a foreign law firm is unethical - death of a partner does not extinguish the client-lawyer relationship with the law firm - negligence of a member in the law firm is negligence of the firm Rule 3.03 - name of partner should be dropped from the firm name when he accepts public office - exception: if the law allows him to practice concurrently while holding the position


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Rule 3.04 - seeking publicity is prohibited - the most worthy and effective advertisement possible, even for a young lawyer is the establishment of a well-merited reputation for professional capacity and fidelity to trust * Can corporations practice law? No. CANON 4 - it is the lawyers duty to improve the legal system in the country CANON 5 - continued legal education - lawyers must update themselves with the law and must participate in the dissemination thereof - judges must also keep abreast of the laws, rulings and doctrines of the Supreme Court - legal education does not stop with the lawyers admission to the Bar - lawyers must take active part, and not just be passive onlookers or listeners in the pursuit for continuing legal education programs * The Bar has been integrated for the attainment of the following objectives: 1. Elevate the standards of the legal profession 2. Improve the administration of justice 3. To enable the bar to discharge its public responsibility more effectively * 3-fold obligation of a lawyer: 1. He owes it to himself to continue improving his knowledge of the law 2. He owes it to his profession to take an active interest in the maintenance of high standards of legal education 3. He owes it to the lay public to make the law a part of their social consciousness * In decreeing the integration of the Philippine Bar, the Supreme Court has given renewed significance to the obligations to: 1. Encourage and foster legal education 2. Devise and maintain a program of continuing legal education for practicing attorneys in order to elevate the standards of the profession throughout the country 3. Conduct campaigns to educate the people on their legal rights and obligations, on the importance of preventive legal service, and on the true functions of the Filipino lawyer * Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) - every 3 years, a lawyer must comply with 36 units; this is mandatory * Exempted from taking MCLE: 1. President, Vice President 2. Judges, Justices 3. Senators, Members of the House 4. OSG 5. Ombudsman 6. Law professors 7. Those not in law practice whether in private or public 8. Those that are retired CANON 6 - these canons shall apply to lawyers in the service of the government * public officials includes elective and appointive officials and employee, permanent or temporary, whether in the career or non-career service, including military and police personnel, whether or not they receive compensation, regardless of amount * The law requires the observance of the following norms of conduct by every official in the discharge and execution of their official duties: 1. Commitments to public interest 2. Professionalism 3. Justness and sincerity 4. Political neutrality 5. Responsiveness to the public 6. Nationalism and patriotism 7. Commitment to democracy 8. Simple living * Are lawyers in the government service not covered by the CPR? No. The CPR also covers lawyers in the government service. They are even subjected to more regulations other than the CPR. * Are government lawyers allowed to engage in private practice? It depends on the pertinent law. If allowed by the Constitution, then he is allowed. He must to see to it that his private practice will not interfere with public duties. He should not use his public duties to advance his interest as a lawyer.


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Rule 6.01 - a prosecutor is a quasi-judicial officer and as such, he should seek equal and impartial justice - the interest of a prosecutor in a criminal prosecution is not to win a case but to see that justice is done - a prosecutor should lay pertinent facts with methodical and meticulous attention - a public prosecutor should recommend the acquittal of the accused whose conviction is on appeal, if he finds no legal basis to sustain the conviction Rule 6.02 - the Code is equally applicable to lawyers in the government service - promotion of private interests is prohibited - misconduct in the discharge of official duties as government official is generally not disciplinable; exception: if the misconduct of a government official is of such character as to affect the qualification as a lawyer or to show moral delinquency - a government lawyer should refuse to perform a duty Rule 6.03 - restrictions against government lawyers who left the service - violation of restriction is tantamount to representing conflicting interests CHAPTER II: THE LAWYER AND THE LEGAL PROFESSION CANON 7 - a lawyer has the duty to uphold the integrity of the legal profession. Rule 7.01 - knowingly making a false statement or suppression of a material facts in the application for admission to the bar; consequences: if discovered before the candidate could take the bar examinations, he will be denied permission to take the examinations after the candidate has passed the examination but before having taken his oath, he will not be allowed to take his oath as a lawyers after the candidate had taken his oath as a lawyer, his name will be stricken from the Roll of Attorneys * Basic requirements for Bar admission: 1. Citizen of the Philippines 2. At least 21 years old 3. Of good moral character 4. A resident of the Philippines 5. Satisfactory evidence of good moral character 6. No charges against him involving moral turpitude * Additional requirements: 1. Regularly studied law for 4 years 2. Successfully completed all prescribed courses 3. In a law school or university officially approved and recognized by the Secretary of Education * Courses: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

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* If what was concealed is a crime not involving moral turpitude, what is the effect? The mere fact that you have concealed is an indication of absence of good moral character. Rule 7.02 - lawyer shall not support the application for admission to the bar of an unqualified candidate Rule 7.03 - a lawyer must at all times conduct himself properly as not to put into question his fitness to practice law - avoidance of scandalous conduct - lawyer shall stand as a shield in defense of right and in the warding of wrong CANON 8 - a lawyer must be respectful to his fellow lawyers - courtesy to other lawyers is necessary Rule 8.01 - abusive and offensive language has no place in pleadings


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- a lawyers language should be forceful but dignified, emphatic but respectful as befitting an advocate and in keeping with the dignity of the legal profession - the lawyers arguments, whether written or oral, should be gracious to both the court and opposing counsel and be of such words as may be properly addressed by one gentleman to another Rule 8.02 - lawyer should not steal anothers client - no encroachment when previous lawyer was already dismissed - lawyer shall not negotiate with the opposite party who is represented by a counsel - lawyer may however interview any witness or prospective witness for the opposing side CANON 9 - a lawyer should not engage nor permit in the unauthorized practice of law Rule 9.01 - unqualified persons those not authorized to practice law; non-lawyers, suspended lawyers; disbarred lawyers - a lawyer can delegate to another lawyer but there must be consent from the client; the attorney-client relationship is a very personal relationship and the client might not want to have his case handled by somebody else. - delegation of legal work to an unqualified person is misbehavior - a lawyer must not allow a non-member of the bar to misrepresent himself as a lawyer Rule 9.02 - lawyers cannot divide their legal fees with unauthorized persons, this is because unauthorized persons are prohibited from practicing law and if theres an arrangement that they get a lawyers fees, it could lead to arrangements that those non-lawyers will need to contribute to legal work; to avoid confusion on the part of the client on who to consult; those non-lawyers are not under the supervision of the SC, thus the SC cannot protect the public from these people. - exceptions: 1. There should be a pre-existing agreement with a partner that upon the latters death, money shall be paid to his estate or persons specified in the agreement. 2. When a lawyer undertakes to complete legal business of a deceased lawyer. 3. Where a lawyer or firm includes non-lawyer employees in a retirement plan even if the plan is based in whole or in part on a profit sharing agreement. CHAPTER III: THE LAWYER AND THE COURTS CANON 10 - the lawyers first duty is to the courts because they are officers to the courts - they should at all times assist in the administration of justice; the interests of the lawyer or his clients are only secondary - refilling a case which was already litigated before is not forum-shopping but nevertheless a violation of Canon 10 Rule 10.01 - no falsehood, nor consent to the doing of the same - duty not to mislead a judge - if there is no evidence as to who falsified the document, it is presumed that the one who used the falsified document is the one who did it Rule 10.02 - a lawyer is prohibited from: 1. Deliberate misquotation 2. Deliberate citation of an inoperative provision as law 3. Assertion of something as a fact which has not been proved - lawyers should not create their own rules - decisions should be cited verbatim - syllabus of a case is not the work of the Supreme Court; it should not be cited in place of the text in decision Rule 10.03 - the aim of a lawsuit is to render justice - judges should not condone the deliberate abuse of the procedural rules by any member of the Bar - lawyer not to misuse rules of procedure Eternal Gardens vs. CA and Seelin case was delayed for 17 years and the land that was in question has now turned into a cemetery; the spouses were able to retrieve the land but there was a clear miscarriage of justice Rule 10.04 - pleaders must also furnish adverse party of parties copies of all documents annexed thereto - motion must be set for hearing; exceptions: those made in open court or in the course of a hearing or trial CANON 11 - lawyers first duty is to the courts - respect due to the courts and judicial officers must be maintained - the highest sign of respect to the courts is the lawyers obedience to court orders and processes - criticisms of courts must not spill over the walls of decency and propriety - respect shouldnt be limited to judges and justices but also to court employees and personnel


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- pleading containing derogatory, offensive or malicious statements submitted to the court or judge in which the proceedings are pending, constitutes direct contempt In Re: Almacen Almacen filed a petition to surrender his certificate title as a lawyer on the ground of because he has lost his confidence and trust in the Judiciary. He lost his case and became final and executory because of Alamcens own fault. Almacen alleged that the courts are callous to his pleads of justice. Almacen was suspended indefinitely. Rule 11.01 - proper attire (women) business or corporate attire - proper attire (men) barong or suit (barong should not be short sleeves) Rule 11.02 - dont be late - being late can have adverse effects in your case - be particular with the time in the particular sala - be aware of the time zones in the court Rule 11.03 - misbehavior in court is direct contempt - lawyers language should be dignified - raising ones voice is a sign of disrespect Rule 11.04 - a lawyer must not attribute to a judge motives not supported by the record or which are immaterial to the case - lawyer can demand that the misbehavior of a judge be placed on record - while lawyers are prohibited to attribute motives to a judge not supported by the record, lawyers must however be courageous enough to expose arbitrariness and injustice of courts and judges Rule 11.05 - criticism of court is not per se contemptuous Rule 11.06 - complaints against judges must be coursed to proper authorities only - if case is administrative in nature Supreme Court (through the Office of the Court Administrator) - if case is criminal and not purely administrative in nature Office of the Ombudsman - if complaints are based on impeachable offenses through House of Representative and the Senate - lawyers should report to the authorities acts of extortion of public officers for appropriate action and not to participate in the illegal acts - a lawyer shall not offer any bribe to any public officer to gain an advantage for himself or for a client CANON 12 - speedy and efficient administration of justice, common aim of the bench and the bar - acts which obstruct the administration of justice are condemned Rule12.01 - lawyer must be ready when he goes to trial - lawyer is not adequately prepared unless he has mastery of the facts of his case, the law and jurisprudence applicable thereto and upon which he can appropriately anchor his theory or stance - duty of a newly hired counsel is obliged to acquaint himself with all the precedent processes and proceedings that have transpired in the record prior to his takeover - the lawyer who is presenting documentary exhibits must also be ready with the originals thereof for purposes of comparison with copies thereof to avoid objections -- which ordinarily delay the proceedings - keeping abreast of the law and legal developments - a lawyer should never come to court unprepared; inadequate preparation obstructs the administration of justice Rule 12.02 - a lawyer shall not file an action which is the subject of a similar pending action - duplication or multiplication of actions arising from the same cause is trifling with our courts of justice - effect of forum shopping: dismissal of all actions pending in different courts without prejudice to the taking of appropriate actions against the counsel or party concerned - forum shopping applies only to judicial cases or proceedings, and not to disbarment proceedings - client, and not counsel, should sign the certificate against forum shopping - a lawyer must not abuse his right of recourse to the courts - forum shopping is a reprehensible manipulation of court process and proceedings - if one case had already been litigated before and it is refiled by the same party, the defense of the defendant should be res judicata and not forum shopping - lawyer has the duty to disclose the prior dismissal of his case by a court of concurrent jurisdiction * forum shopping when as a result of adverse opinion in one forum, a party seeks favorable opinion (other than by appeal or certiorari) in another or when he institutes 2 or more actions or proceedings grounded on the same cause, on the gamble that one or the other court would make a favorable disposition


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Is forum shopping allowed? No. Forum shopping occurs when cases are filed in different courts and that these cases have the same facts and cause with anticipation that one of the courts will render a positive/adverse judgment. It is unethical because it floods the court dockets. Rule 12.03 - a lawyer who asked for extension of time to file pleadings, memoranda or briefs must act in good faith and must comply with the period granted Rule 12.04 - assistance in the speedy and efficient administration of justice - once a judgment has become final, the winning party be not, through subterfuge, deprived of the fruits of the verdict - a lawyer should not enter his appearance in a case which had long been terminated by final decision - a judge should defend dilatory tactics of lawyers - lawyers should not misuse the rules of procedure Rule 12.05 - to prevent the lawyer from coaching the witness - coaching of witness during break or recess is condemned Rule 12.06 - assisting in misrepresentation or impersonation is condemned - the witness who commits the misrepresentation or impersonation is criminally liable for false testimony Rule 12.07 - a lawyer shall not abuse, browbeat or harass or needlessly inconvenience a witness - rights of a witness - lawyers should treat witnesses with fairness - judges are equally mandated to be courteous to litigants and witnesses - rights and obligations of a witness: (under Revised Rules of Evidence) 1. To be protected from irrelevant, improper, or insulting questions, and from harsh or insulting demeanor; 2. Not to be detained longer than the interests of justice require; 3. Not to be examined except only as to matter pertinent to the issue; 4. Not to give an answer which will tend to subject him to a penalty for an offense unless otherwise provided by law; 5. Not to give an answer which will tend to degrade his reputation, unless it be to the very fact from which the fact in issue would be presumed. But a witness must answer to the fact of his previous final conviction for an offense. Rule 12.08 - a lawyer shall avoid testifying in behalf of his client except on formal (mailing, authentication or custody of an instrument) and substantial matters (testimony which is essential to the end of justice) - reason: There is difficulty in reconciling the role of the lawyer and the role of the witness. CANON 13 - in prosecuting or defending cases, the lawyer must be guided by the principles of justice - he must rely on the merits of his cases and should avoid using influence and connections to win his cases - a lawyer must not display or boast of being influential to the court - the judge has the corresponding duty to convey or permit others the impression that they are in a special position to influence the judge Rule 13.01 - extraordinary attention or hospitality to, or seek familiarity with judges, to be avoided - the reason for this prohibition is to protect the good name and reputation of the judge and lawyer - lawyers should not also seek for opportunity to cultivate familiarity with judges - the independence of the judges must be protected at all times so that the administration of justice may not be exposed to destructive suspicions before the scrutinizing eyes of litigants and the public as a whole - consequences: lawyers dishonors his profession; judges unworthy of his high office - a lawyer should not communicate or argue privately with the judge as to the merits of a pending case - it is an impropriety for a judge to meet privately with an accused who has a pending case before him without the presence of the other party; the prohibition is to maintain impartiality - court should administer justice free from suspicion of bias and prejudice Rule 13.02 - prohibits lawyers by causing trial by publicity. - public statements to arouse public opinion for or against a party generally condemned - test when public statement is contemptuous: the character of the act done and its direct tendency to prevent and obstruct the discharge of official duty - trial by publicity, when prejudicial: there must be an allegation or proof that the judges have been unduly influenced, not simply that they might be, by the barrage of publicity - judge is now allowing himself to be influenced by overwhelming public opinion. - there is nothing we can do about the media but there is something we can do about what lawyers do - lawyer equally guilty as the client if he induces the latter to cause the publicity - however, after the case has been finished, the rule in progressive jurisdictions is that, courts are subject to the same criticism as other people


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Rule 13.03 - lawyers shall not invite interference by another governmental agency in the course of judicial proceedings - the rationale of the rule is to preserve the independence of the judges in the performance of their duties CHAPTER IV: THE LAWYER AND THE CLIENT CANON 14 - a lawyer shall not refuse his services to the needy - needed involvement of practicing lawyers in the rendition of legal aid to the poor and indigent without expecting ordinary attorneys fees for their services (social obligation of every practicing lawyer) - free access to the courts and quasi-judicial bodies and adequate legal assistance shall not be denied to any person by reason of poverty (Sec. 11, Art. III, 1987Const) Rule 14.01 - a lawyer is not bound to accept every case that is referred to him by a prospective client; he should not accept any more cases which he could no longer handle - the lawyer cannot decline to represent a person for the sole reason of the latters (1) race, (2) sex, (3) creed, (4) status in life or (4) because of the lawyers opinion that said person is guilty of the charge - the lawyer should defend the accused by all fair ad honorable means that the law permits regardless of his personal opinion as to the guilt of the accused - even if, after accepting the case, the lawyer discovers that his client is guilty, he must still continue with defense of his client and use all fair arguments arising on the evidence and see to it that due process is accorded to his client and that he should not be punished for more than what the law provides - this Rule 14.01 is applicable only in criminal cases Rule 14.02 - the duty to appoint counsel de oficio rests upon the presiding judge - if the accused desires and is unable to employ one, the court must assign an attorney de oficio to defend him; if he wants to defend himself without counsel, the judge may allow him to go trial without counsel but he cannot later claim he was not accorded due process for lack of counsel - right to a counsel de oficio does not cease upon the conviction of the accused by the trial court; thus, if he wants to appeal, the court must still assign a counsel de oficio for the purpose - judges are cautioned not to frequently appoint same lawyer as counsel de oficio for 2 basic reasons: It is unfair to the attorney concerned, considering the burden of his regular practice, that he should be saddled with too many de oficio cases The compensation provided for by Section 32 of the Rules of Court might be considered by some lawyers as a regular source of income, something which the Rule does not envision - a lawyer should not also decline an appointment as amicus curiae except for serious and sufficient cause - free legal aid on request of IBP - lawyer to render free legal aid to destitute upon being assigned by the judge Rule 14.03 - lawyer may not refuse to accept the case, unless: He is not in a position to carry out the work effectively or competently; or He labors under a conflict of interest between him and the prospective client or between and present client and the prospective client - lawyer who pretends to be disqualified under the rules is committing grave misconduct Rule 14.04 - same standards to be employed for a client unable to pay lawyers fees - all clients of a lawyer. Whether rich or poor, are entitled to the same level of professionalism, dedication, diligence, skills and competence CANON 15 - candor, fairness and loyalty required of lawyers Rule 15.01 - possible involvement in conflicting interests to be disclosed immediately to prospective clients - lawyer shall not place his private interest over and above of his clients - attorneys failure to disclose prior engagement of interest is a good ground for the client to discharge the attorney; possible exception: by writeen consent of all concerned given after a full disclosure of the facts - kinds of conflict of interests: Concurrent (or multiple) representation when a lawyer represents clients whose objectives are adverse to each other, no matter how slight or remote such adverse interests may be Sequential (or successive) representation when a law firm takes a present client who has interest adverse to the interest of a former client of the same law firm Rule 15.02 - preservation of the confidences and secret of clients - exceptions: When revelation is authorized by the clients after having been acquainted of the consequences of the disclosures When the revelation is required by law When necessary to collect the lawyers fees or to defend himself, his employees or associates or by judicial action - privileged communication safeguards the revelation of confidence and secrets; even mere prospective clients are protected - form of communication: may not only be in writing or oral, but may also be in the form of actions or signs of other means of communication


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- requisites of privileged communication: There exists an attorney and client relationship or a kind of consultancy relationship with a prospective client The communication was made by the client to the lawyer in the course of the lawyers professional employment The communication must be intended to be confidential - The mere relation of attorney and client does not raise a presumption of confidentiality. The client must intend the communication to be confidential. * confidential communication refers to information transmitted by voluntary act or disclosure between attorney and client in confidence and by means which, so far as the client aware, discloses the information no to 3rd person other than one reasonably necessary for the transmission of the information or the accomplishment of the purpose for which it was given - duration of the privilege: even after the termination of the attorney-client relationship - when contents of pleadings ceased to be privileged: after the pleadings have been filed - 2-fold purpose of the rule: To encourage a client to make full disclosure of the facts of the case to his counsel without fear To allow the lawyer freedom to obtain full information from his client - the party who avers that the communication is privileged has the burden of proof to establish the existence of the privilege unless from the face of the document itself, it clearly appears that it is privileged - instances when communication is not privileged: When communication is made to a person who is not a lawyer When communication is made to a lawyer for some other purpose other than on account of the lawyer-client relationship - parties entitled to invoke the privilege: The client, who is primarily intended to be protected by the privilege The lawyer himself or the clients employee may claim the privilege in the absence of any waiver on the part of the client The attorneys secretary, stenographer, or clerk, who acquired confidential communication in such capacity, save only when the client and the attorney jointly consent thereto - even if the communication is unprivileged, the rule of ethics prohibits him from voluntarily revealing or using to his benefit or third person at the disadvantage of the client said communication unless the client consents thereto - the privilege is limited or has reference only to communications which are within the ambit of lawful employment and does not extend to those transmitted in contemplation of future crimes or frauds Rule 15.03 - tests in determining conflicting interests: Whether a lawyer is duty-bound to fight for an issue or claim in behalf of one client and, at the same time, to oppose that claim for another client Whether the acceptance of a new relation would prevent the full discharge of the lawyers duty of undivided fidelity and loyalty to the client or invite suspicion of unfaithfulness or double-dealing in the performance of that duty Whether the lawyer would be called upon in the new relation to use against a former client any confidential information acquired through their connection or previous employment - in the process of determining whether there is a conflict of interests an important criterion is probability, not certainty of conflict - defense that prospective client has no lawyer to turn to is not acceptable - unauthorized act of representing conflicting interests is a criminal offense - undivided allegiance to client is a must - the rule aims not only to bar the dishonest practitioner from fraudulent conduct but also to prevent the honest practitioner from putting himself in a position where he may be required to choose between conflicting interests - the lawyer may appear against his own client only on condition that the client has given his written consent thereto and after full disclosure of the facts to him - termination of relationship is no justification for a lawyer to represent an adverse to or in conflict with that of the former client Rule 15.04 - consent in writing is required to prevent future controversy on the authority of the lawyer to act as mediator, conciliator or arbitrator - but he cannot represent any of the parties to it Rule 15.05 - overstatement or understatement of prospects of the case is not proper - lawyers are admonished from making bold assurances to clients Rule 15.06 - influence-peddling on any public official, tribunal or legislative body is not included in the practice of law Rule 15.07 - lawyer must promote respect for the law - lawyer should give proper advise to clients - lawyer should advise clients on matters of decorum and proper attitude toward courts of justice Rule 15.08 - when lawyer is concurrently engaged in business he must clarify to client in what capacity he acting


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- lawyer cannot divide his personality CANON 16 - lawyer is trustee of clients moneys and properties - dual roles of the lawyer to his client: 1. Fiduciary or trustee 2. Agent (appear in court on behalf of the client; more than an ordinary agent) Rule 16.01 - lawyer accountable for all moneys and properties of client - unlawful retention of clients refunds is contemptuous - money not used for specific purpose is held also in trust and must be accounted immediately - attorneys lien is not an excuse for non-rendition of accounting - lawyer cannot disburse clients money to clients creditor without authority Rule 16.02 - funds of clients not to be commingled with funds of counsel Rule 16.03 - a lawyer who obtained possession of the funds and properties belonging to his client in the course of his professional employment shall deliver the same to his client when: They become due, or Upon demand - 2 kinds of attorneys fees: 1. Retaining, general, possessory lien right of lawyer to lawfully withhold his clients property (funds or documents) that lawfully come into his possession, until payment of his attorneys fees 2. Charging, special, particular, non-possessory lien right of the attorney to request the court to annotate his claim for attorneys fees in whatever recoveries made by the client from the losing adversary - limitations on exercise of charging lien: 1. Applies only to the specific action in which the charging lien is recorded 2. Applies only to favorable money judgments, and executions pursuant thereto - lawyers failure to deliver shall give rise to a presumption that he has misappropriated the funds for his own use to the prejudice of the client and in violation of the trust reposed in him - a lawyer shall have a lien over the clients funds and may apply so much thereof to satisfy his lawful fees and disbursements but must give prompt notice to his client for the latters advertisement - attorneys retaining lien does not apply to public documents and exhibits introduced in court - when documents are subject of lien, adequate security may be required - lawyer cannot be deprived of his attorneys fees through the clients maneuver - client can dismiss the lawyer anytime; consequences: if without just cause the client will pay in full attorneys fees expressly agreed upon in their contract - lawyers charging lien may be assigned - charging lien survives the death of the client - probate court has no authority to enforce a lien unless conferred by a statutes - effect of enforcement of charging lien: client-lawyer relationship is terminated Rule 16.04 - lawyer shall not borrow money from client; unless, the clients interests are fully protected by the nature of the case or by independent advice - lawyer shall not lend money to client; unless, it is necessary in the interest if justice to advance necessary expenses in a legal matter he is handling for the client CANON 17 - fidelity to the cause of client must always be maintained - it is not a good practice for lawyers to fight former clients - relationship of lawyer-client is highly fiduciary CANON 18 * diligence the attention and care required of a person in a given situation and is the opposite of negligence - a lawyer is presumed to be prompt and diligent in the performance of his duties and to have employed his best efforts, learning and ability in the protection of his clients interests and in the discharge of his duties as an officer of the court - competence and diligence highly demanded of lawyers - extraordinary diligence not required, only diligence of a good father of a family - exact given address must be indicated in the pleadings (if there a 2 or more addresses) Rule 18.01 -implication of acceptance of cases: that the lawyer possesses the requisite of academic learning, skill and ability in the practice of his profession; that he will exert his best judgment in the prosecution or defense in the litigation entrusted to him; that he will exercise reasonable and ordinary care and diligence in the pursuit or defense of the case - clients are entitled to effective representation


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- government lawyers are disqualified to practice law * collaborating counsel one who is subsequently engaged to assist a lawyer already handling a particular case for a client Rule 18.02 - adequate preparation (concept) it includes among other virtues, sufficient knowledge of the law and jurisprudence, ability in trial technique and high proficiency in the formulation of pleadings - comfortable workload: too much workload will adversely affect lawyers proficiency Rule 18.03 - ordinary care and diligence is required of a lawyer - a lawyer is liable for his negligence - lawyer has no opportunity to waive clients right on appeal - a lawyer should adopt a system which will assure him of receiving judicial notices properly - lawyer should accept only so much cases he can handle - effects of negligence and incompetence of lawyer: disciplinary action against the lawyer malpractice suit for damages a criminal conviction may be set aside a retrial may be had in civil cases Rule 18.04 - client must be kept informed of the status of the case particularly on the important movements or developments therein - it is the duty of the party litigant to be in contact with his counsel from time to time in order to be informed of the progress of the case - litigants should give the necessary assistance to their counsel for what is at stake is their interest in the case CANON 19 - the lawyer owes entire devotion to the interest of the client, warm zeal in the maintenance and defense of his rights and the exertion of his utmost learning and ability Rule 19.01 - only honorable, fair and honest means shall be employed in the maintenance of cases - negative pregnant is improper and condemned because it is pregnant with alternative admission to the allegations of the complaint - lawyer shall not file or threaten to file any unfounded or baseless cases against adversaries of his client - blackmail the extortion of money from a person by threats of accusation or exposure or opposition in the public prints obtaining of value from a person as a condition of refraining from making an accusation against him, or disclosing some secret calculated to operate to his prejudice - extortion the exaction of money either for the performance of a duty, the prevention of an injury, or the exercise of an influence - defense of a person accused of crime: to present every defense that the law permits, to the end that no person may be deprived of life or liberty, but by due process of law Rule 19.02 - lawyer shall not allow his client to perpetrate fraud - if client persist in such wrongdoings, the lawyer should terminate their relation Rule 19.03 - lawyer, not client, controls the procedure of handling the case - obligation of counsel to comply with his clients lawful requests - remedy if lawyer does not agree: to withdraw from the case CANON 20 Kinds of Attorneys Fees/Arrangements: 1. fixed or absolute fee 2. contingent fee 3. fixed fee payable per appearance 4. fixed fee hourly rate / time billing 5. fixed fee based on piece work Rule 20.01 * 2 concepts of attorneys fees: 1. ordinary an attorneys fee is the reasonable compensation paid to a lawyer for the legal services he has rendered to a client - basis: fact of employment by the client 2. extraordinary an attorneys fee is an indemnity for the damages ordered by the court to be paid by the losing party to the prevailing party in a litigation - basis: any of the cases authorized by law - unauthorized counsel is not entitled to attorneys fees - adequate compensation is necessary in order to enable the lawyer to serve his client effectively and to preserve the integrity and independence of the profession - lawyer must be secured on his honorarium lawfully earned


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* forms of employment as counsel to a client: 1. oral counsel is employed without a written agreement 2. express terms and conditions including the amount of fees, are explicitly stipulated in a written document which may be private or public document - commencement of employment: once there is a meeting of the minds between the lawyer and client on the case or subject to be handled - when a client employs the services of a law firm, he employs the entire law firm - proper time of fixing attorneys fees: commencement of the lawyer-client relationship - written contract of attorneys fees is the law between the lawyer and the client - the contract is implied when there is no agreement - immediate fixing of attorneys fees is advisable * advantages of a written contract for attorneys fees: an express valid contract stipulating for the compensation which the attorney is to receive for his services is generally held conclusive as to the amount of compensation in case of unjustified dismissal of an attorney, he shall be entitled to recover from the client full compensation stipulated in the contract - pauper may be exempted from legal fees but is not exempted from attorneys fees - ambiguities in contract: interpretation which is favorable to the client will be adopted - winning litigant is not always granted attorneys fees * quantum meruit legal mechanism in legal ethics which prevents an unscrupulous client from running away with the fruits of the legal services of a counsel without paying therefore - no lawyer engaged, but attorneys fees are allowed - for attorneys fees to be justified, its reason must be mentioned in the text of the decision - attorneys fee is not included in the general prayer - the award of attorneys fees must be deleted where the award of moral and exemplary damages are eliminated - stipulated attorneys fee s conclusive; exception is on the basis of quantum meruit - no attorneys fees would be allowed if parties have legitimate claims against each other * guidelines in determining attorneys fees on quantum meruit basis: 1. time spend and extent of the services rendered or required 2. novelty and difficulty of the questions involved 3. importance of subject matter 4. skill demanded of the lawyer 5. probability of losing other employment 6. customary charges for similar services and schedule of fees of IBP 7. amount involved in the controversy and benefits resulting to the client from the service 8. contingency or certainty of compensation - death or disability of lawyer employed on contingent basis, he or his estate will be allowed to recover the reasonable value of the services rendered - champertous contracts are void * champertous contracts where the lawyer stipulates with his client that in the prosecution of the case, he will bear all the expenses for the recovery of the things or property being claimed by the client, and the latter agrees to pay the former a portion of the thing or property recovered as compensation - when is a fee unconscionable?: the amount contracted for must be such that no man in his right senses would offer on the one hand and no other honest and fair man would accept the other - the charging of attorneys fees beyond what is fixed in the law is malpractice - judges sole opinion is not the basis of the right to a lawyers fee - no court shall be bound by the opinion of the attorneys as expert witnesses as to the proper compensation, but may disregard such testimony and base its conclusion on its own professional knowledge - guidelines provided for in the rule may be used in determining fees in a formal contract for employment Rule 20.02 * sharing or division of attorneys fees, when allowed: only one counsel no problem 2 or more lawyers general rule: they will share equally as they are considered special partners for a special purpose If there are specific contracts contracts shall prevail unless found unconscionable If the lawyers were engaged at different stages of the case the lawyer who bore the brunt of the prosecution of the case to its successful end is entitled to the full amount of his fees despite the fact that the client has retained another lawyer as exclusive counsel who appeared only after the rendition of a favorable judgment - lawyer-referral system, effects; fees of collaborating counsel: said counsel will receive attorneys fees in proportion to the work performed and the responsibility assumed - classification of lawyers according to lines of specialty: the IBP is in the best position to initiate the classification or listing of practicing lawyers in each Chapter - compensation to an attorney for merely recommending another lawyer is improper - attorneys fees for legal services shared or divided to non-lawyers is prohibited


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Rule 20.03 - rationale: there should be no room for suspicion on the part of the client that his lawyer is receiving compensation in connection with the case from 3rd persons with hostile interests - exception: when the client has full knowledge and approval thereof Rule 20.04 - general rule: a lawyer should avoid the filing of any case against clients for the enforcement of his attorneys fees - exception: to prevent Imposition Injustice Fraud - judicial action to recover attorneys fees: In the same case In a separate civil action - client shall not lose everything for attorneys fees CANON 21 * confidence information protected by the attorney-client privilege under the Revised Rules of Court * secret other information gained in the professional relationship that the client has requested to be held inviolate or the disclosure of which would be embarrassing or would likely be detrimental to the client - communication must be intended to be confidential - The duty to maintain inviolate the clients confidences and secrets is not temporary but permanent. It is in effect perpetual for it outlasts the lawyers employment. - exceptions: When authorized by client When required by law When necessary to collect his fees or to defend himself, is employees or association or by judicial action - the reason of the lawyer-client privilege is to encourage and inspire clients to tell all about the facts of their cases - this canon also applies to confidences and secrets of prospective clients Rule 21.01 - prohibition against revelation of confidences and secrets of client subject to exceptions: When authorized by client When required by law When necessary to collect his fees or to defend himself, is employees or association or by judicial action - reason for strict prohibition: because the relationship is one of trust and confidence of the highest degree - when properly authorized, lawyer may break the seal of secrecy - when required by law, the law prevails - when necessary to collect fees or to defend himself or staff by judicial action, rule of secrecy shall yield Rule 21.02 - prohibition to use information acquired in the course of professional employment to disadvantage of client - exception: if the client with full knowledge of the circumstances consents to the use thereof - violation of rule is breach of trust Rule 21.03 - disclosure of information from lawyers files prohibited without consent of client which must be in writing - exception: if client gives his written consent Rule 21.04 - without prohibition, disclosure of clients affairs to partners or associates in a law firm may be done Rule 21.05 - clients confidences and secrets, to be guarded also by the lawyers personnel in his office Rule 21.06 - indiscreet conversation about clients affairs is to be avoided Rule 21.07 - prohibition to disclose secrets covers consultation


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CANON 22 - a lawyer shall withdraw his services only for good cause and upon notice appropriate in the circumstances Rule 22.01 * appearance act of submitting or presenting oneself to the court, either as plaintiff or defendant, personally or through counsel, and seeking general reliefs or special reliefs from the court * kinds of appearance: 1. General appearance the party comes to the court either as plaintiff or defendant and seeks general reliefs from the court for satisfaction of his claims or counterclaims respectively 2. Special appearance a defendant appears in court solely for the purpose of objecting to the jurisdiction of the court over his person - lawyer who appears in lower court is presumed to be lawyer on appeal - formal appearance of counsel in a case, how effected: an attorney must make a notice of appearance - lawyer (without formal notice of appearance) is presumed to be properly authorized to represent any cause in which he appears and no written power of attorney is required to authorize him to appear - judge may require counsel, on reasonable grounds to produce or prove his authority to appear for a client * cases when a lawyer may withdraw: 1. Client pursuing an illegal or immoral course of conduct 2. Clients insistence that lawyer pursues acts violative of the Canons and Rules 3. Inability of lawyer to work with co-counsel 4. Mental and physical inability of counsel to handle case effectively 5. Clients deliberate failure to pay attorneys fees agreed upon 6. Election or appointment of lawyer to public office 7. Other similar cases - death of a client automatically terminates client-lawyer relationship - duty of an attorney upon death of a client: to inform the court immediately of such event, and to give the name, residence of his executor, administrator, guardian or other legal representative - death of an attorney also terminates client-lawyer relationship; exception: if the lawyer is a member of a law firm, which appears as counsel for the client, the death of the attending attorney will not terminate the relationship - dissolution of law firm does not terminate client-lawyer relationship - right of client to terminate relation with counsel absolute; but not vice versa - situation when a lawyer cannot be dismissed: when a lawyer is engaged not on retainer basis, but as legal assistant of a corporation and such he is required to observe office hours - requirement when appearance of new counsel is occasioned by death of original counsel of record: all the requirements of a proper substitution must be met, one of which is a verified proof of death of such attorney - termination of lawyers employment subject to certain requirements - simple misunderstanding: does not fall under any of the grounds where a lawyer may validly withdraw - attorney-client relationship does not terminate formally until there is a withdrawal made of record Rule 22.02 * duty of a discharged lawyer or one who withdraws: 1. Immediately turn over all papers and property to which the client is entitled 2. Shall cooperate with the succeeding lawyer in the orderly transfer of the case - courts must respect and protect the attorneys lien * retaining lien passive lien and may not be actively enforced; mere right to retain the papers as against the client until the lawyer is fully paid - lawyers refusal to return documents or receipts subject to retaining lien is not guilty of malpractice * charging lien equitable right of the attorney to have the fees due him for services in a particular suit secured by the judgment or recovery in such suit; to protect the claim on the fruits of the lawyers labor - a lawyer hired by the administrator is not necessarily the lawyer of the estate - retaining lien expires when possession ends * requisites of charging lien: 1. Existence of a client-lawyer relationship 2. Favorable judgment secured by the counsel for his client which judgment is a money judgment 3. Noting into the records of the case through the filing of an appropriate motion of the statement of the lawyers claim for attorneys fees with copies furnished to client and adverse party - may a charging lien be entered into the records even before a judgment is rendered?: the answer is affirmative; however it can be enforced only after the judgment is secured in favor of client - effect and importance of noting of charging line: the lawyers fee is protected


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- against whom can a charging lien be enforced?: against the attorneys client or against the judgment debtor - may a lawyer exercise a charging lien on the land of his client?: he cannot have a lien on the land ADMINISTRATIVE LIABILITES OF LAWYERS - Right to practice law being just a privilege is burdened with conditions. - Courts have the inherent power to adopt proper and adequate measures to preserve their integrity and render possible and facilitate the exercise of their functions. - Supreme Court has the full authority and power to warn, admonish, reprimand, suspend and disbar a lawyer. Lawyer violates his obligations under perils of: 1. Disciplinary action/administrative action 2. Criminal action 3. Civil action/damage suit 4. Contempt of court Conditions for continued membership in good standing in the Bar: 1. Rigid standards of mental fitness 2. Maintenance of the highest degree of morality 3. Faithful compliance with the rules of the legal profession Different kinds of disciplinary actions: 1. Warning act or fact of putting one on his guard against an impending danger, evil, consequences or penalties - a statement put forth to a lawyer, that any similar or other infraction of ethical or other required conduct would be visited with a higher or more serious penalty 2. Admonition gentle or friendly reproof, mild rebuke, warning or reminder, counseling, on a fault, error or oversight, an expression of authoritative advice or warning 3. Reprimand more severe nature; a public and formal censure or sever reproof, administered to a person in fault by his superior officer or a body to which he belongs 4. Fine pecuniary punishment which courts impose against a miscreant lawyer; may also be imposed in accord with criminal violations of the law 5. Suspension temporary withholding of the lawyers privilege to practice his profession for a certain period, or for an indefinite period of time - act of prohibiting a lawyer from practicing law for a certain period; qualified disbarment - because the attorney is deprived temporarily of the right to practice his profession; 6. Disbarment act of Phil. Supreme Court in withdrawing from an attorney the privilege to practice law; name of the lawyer is to be stricken out from the Roll of Attorneys 7. Contempt 8. Imprisonment Main objects of disbarment and suspension: 1. To compel the attorney to deal fairly and honestly with his clients 2. To remove from the profession a person whose misconduct has proved him unfit to be entrusted with the duties and responsibilities belonging to an office of an attorney 3. To punish the lawyer although not so much as to safeguard the administration of justice 4. To set an example or a warning for the other members of the bar 5. To safeguard the administration of justice from incompetence and dishonesty of lawyers 6. To protect the public - A disbarred lawyer can take part in pro se practice. - No private interest is involved in disbarment. - Power to discipline lawyers is judicial in nature. Characteristics of disbarment proceeding / Nature of disciplinary action: Sui generis - a class by itself Neither a civil nor a criminal proceeding Double jeopardy cannot be availed of in a disbarment proceeding against an attorney It cannot be initiated motu proprio by the Supreme Court or by the IBP; it can be initiated without a complaint It can proceed regardless of interest or lack of interest of the complainants, if the facts proven so warrant It is imprescriptible It is conducted confidentially being confidential in nature until its final determination It is itself due process of law Whatever has been decided in a disbarment case cannot be a source of right that may be enforced in another action, like action for reconveyance and damages In pari delicto rule is not applicable Purpose of disciplinary action: 1. Preserve the purity of the legal profession 2. Preserve the proper and honest administration of justice


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Grounds for suspension or disbarment of members of the bar: 1. Deceit fraudulent and deceptive misrepresentation, artifice, or device, used by one or more persons to deceive and trick another 2. Malpractice any malfeasance or dereliction of duty committed by a lawyer; Gross misconduct in office any inexcusable, shameful or flagrant unlawful conduct on the part of the person concerned in the administration of justice which is prejudicial to the rights of the parties or the right determination of a cause, a conduct that is generally motivated by a premeditated, obstinate or intentional purpose 3. Grossly immoral conduct that conduct which is willful, flagrant, or shameless, and which shows a moral indifference to the opinion of the good and respectable members of the community * consenting adults rule what is grossly immoral conduct is largely circumstantial 4. Conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude everything which is done contrary to justice, modesty, or good morals 5. Violation of oath of office 6. Willful disobedience of any lawful order of a superior court resistance or defiance to the order of the Court must be willful 7. Corrupt or willful appearance as an attorney for a party to case without authority to do so * Is acquittal in a criminal case a bar to DA? No. The standards of legal profession are not satisfied by conduct which merely enables one to escape the penalties of criminal law. * Quantum of proof required: Criminal case needs proof beyond reasonable doubt Civil case needs preponderance of evidence Administrative case only needs substantial evidence Disciplinary action not dismisses upon withdrawal by private complainant: _ The power to discipline lawyers who are officers of the court may not be cut short by compromise and withdrawal of charges. _ Disciplinary proceedings involve no private interest and afford no redress for private grievance. They are undertaken and prosecuted solely for public welfare. _ However, if upon desistance, there is nothing more to substantiate the charge, then the case may be dismissed. * May the pendency of criminal action suspend disbarment proceedings? No. There are different quantums of proof. It is not sound judicial policy to await the outcome and final resolution of a criminal case before the court may act on a complaint for disbarment. * Power to discipline vested in all courts; judicial function; all courts can reprimand, warning, admonition, fine, contempt * Only the SC, CA, and RTC: suspension; power of CA and RTC to suspend is subject to the review by the SC; until the SC has affirmed the suspension, it shall not take effect. * Only the SC can disbar a lawyer. SC trying Disciplinary Cases - court sits en banc disbarment, suspension for more than 1 year, or a fine for more than P10000. Otherwise, they do it by division. Direct contempt - Misbehavior in the presence of or so near a court as to obstruct or interrupt the proceedings before the same, including disrespect toward the court, offensive personalities toward others, or refusal to be sworn or to answer as a witness, or to subscribe an affidavit or deposition when lawfully required to do so. Indirect contempt Misbehavior of an officer of a court in the performance of his official duties or in his official transactions. Disobedience of or resistance to a lawful writ, process, order, or judgment of a court, including the act of a person who, after being dispossessed or ejected from any real property by the judgment or process of any court of competent jurisdiction, enters or attempts or induces another to enter into or upon such real property, for the purpose of executing acts of ownership or possession, or in any manner disturbs the possession given to the person adjudged to be entitled thereto Any abuse of or any unlawful interference with the processes or proceedings of a court not constituting direct contempt under section 1 of this rule Any improper conduct tending, directly or indirectly, to impede, obstruct, or degrade the administration of justice Disciplinary Powers Broader scope of behavior Over lawyers only * Both may proceed simultaneously. Contempt Powers Particular Over any person

Disbarment and disciplinary proceedings: Judicial in nature Presumption exists in favor of lawyer-respondent Quantum of proof: substantial evidence Mitigating circumstances in disbarment: Good faith in the acquisition of the property Inexperience of the lawyer Age

Res ipsa loquitor Burden of proof is on complainant Confidential

Apology Lack of intention to denigrate the court Other analogous circumstances


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