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Lawyer Ethics and Texting

February 22, 2019 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Text messaging has become a mainstream form of communication.  Clients now routinely text their lawyers about pending matters.  They may ask about the status of a case, provide facts about a case, communicate decisions to a lawyer, or message other sensitive information.  These messages are often to a lawyer’s mobile phone that is used extensively for personal purposes, unsecured in their transmissions, and easily accessible by third parties. This new wave of lawyer-client communication raises many difficult ethical questions, including preservation of the attorney-client privilege.   This program will provide you with a guide to the major ethics issues when lawyers and their clients’ text message about pending matters.

Handout Materials will be emailed to you prior to the seminar

Starts 12:00 p.m.
1.0, including one hour of ethics MCLE Credit Hours


·         Confidentiality issues involving unsecured transmission of texts involving sensitive case issues

·         How to handle mobile phones used for both personal purposes and law practice

·         Potential loss of the attorney-client privilege when text messages are accessible by third parties

·         Tension among the duties of competence, prudence and to communicate with clients

·         Understanding the ethical risks and counseling clients about the risks to their case when texting


Thomas E. Spahn, McGuireWoods, LLP – McLean, Virginia

Brian S. Faughnan, Lewis Thomason, PC – Memphis