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Constitutions vs. Ethics

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Constitutions Vs. Ethics

I have a question that needs to be resolved I know a person that is indigent that had his civil rights violated, the constitutional violations were pretty clear cut however an attorney told him that for ethical reasons their office could not represent him!

This response shocked me because of the civil rights violations were clear even to me, so I and someone else tested this firms ethics with a lot less merits (if any merits at all) and from a stand point of not being indigent to being to able pay for their representing me in court, suffice to say that money prevailed over firms ETHICS.

Again the same scenario was played out but with a female where fictitious witnesses against potential client, merits few, however money enough to pay for their fees, again clients were not turned away because of ETHICAL concerns but in fact were willing to start case.

QUESTION what is a lawyers sworn OATH and Isn't a lawyers ethical and Constitutional duties is in the preservation in the first eight amendments.? .

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Without knowing the details of the indigent person's case and the hypotheticals that you posed to him to test him, I cannot comment on whether his rejection of the guy's case was based on any ethical concern or if he was just trying to find a perhaps less objectionable way to turn him down than telling him he was rejecting it because he couldn't pay. There is nothing that compels any attorney to take a civil case. If a client cannot pay for the services of the attorney, the attorney need not represent him/her.

I will say that, IMO, putting up fake clients to test the attorney also raises its own ethical issues since it carries an element of deceit.

"QUESTION

what is a lawyers sworn OATH and Isn't a lawyers ethical and

Constitutional duties is in the preservation in the first eight

amendments.?"

As for the first part of your question, the oath, if any, that an attorney takes upon entering the bar is purely dependent on what that state requires. Thus, without knowing the state it is impossible to answer the question. As to the second part of your question, an attorney's ethical obligations are not defined at all in the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the ethical obligations of an attorney are found in the rules of professional conduct adopted by the state in which he or she practices, the rules of practice for the courts in which he or she appears, and the rules governing practice before any government agencies that the attorney may appear before.

The U.S. Constitution is primarily a document that sets out how the federal government is organized, what powers it has, its basic relationship with the states, and provides citizens with some fundamental rights against the government. It does not, however, regulate the practice of law nor require lawyers to represent anyone.

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Your question is pointless and unanswerable because it's fully of conclusory statements and almost no facts. We have no way of knowing what the "ethical reasons" were, and we therefore cannot know if your "test" situations kept all other factors equal other than the lack of indigency. Finally, no oath requires lawyers to work for free.

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It recently occurred in the State of California: I accidently left out that an appellate court recently assigned him counsel so allow me to reframe my question, my question is this can they withdrawal from the indigents case without an explanation, doesn’t it stigmatizes the indigents merits with their withdrawal irreparably damaging his case by casting it in a category of meritless claims. Does the indigent have some sort of recourse if Attorneys grounds for withdrawing from the case are perfectly invalid (the key word is invalid.) Does he have any recourse in the law? With this said my initial question:

Which leads me to the initial question: where can I find the Attorneys sworn oath when entering into the bar in the State of California and the codes of ethics that would support their objectionable withdrawal of their assistance to represent this indigent? Because the difference between us and him is that he is imprisoned—we are not—he is indigent—we are not--he has merits—we did not with this said what could be more objectionable than by hiding behind the rules of ethics and not enforcing, protecting a citizens’ rights.

Lastly , I must answer your concerns. You imply in your (IMO) that my test raises ethical concerns since it carries with it some sort of element of deceit, allow me to alleviate your concerns, this line of deceit that you are sensitive to is used in every facet in society to weed out wrongs ranging from law enforcement agencies--- valid stand up investigative programs—20/20—documentaries—Schools—without more I find myself perfectly justified in conducting my test the results were clear cut as this persons merits. However I did not mean to offend any legitimate lawyer or firm.

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my question is this can they withdrawal from the indigents case without an explanation

If allowed by the court in question, yes.

doesn’t it stigmatizes the indigents merits with their withdrawal irreparably damaging his case by casting it in a category of meritless claims.

Not really no, lawyers withdraw from cases all the time for a wide variety of reasons. Some have to do with money, others because of clients they can't work with for whatever reason, to scheduling problems or health issues etc.

Does the indigent have some sort of recourse if Attorneys grounds for withdrawing from the case are perfectly invalid (the key word is invalid.) Does he have any recourse in the law?

Not that I can think of, no. Again, there are a number of reasons why the lawyer may have withdrawn, and just because you don't find them "valid" doesn't mean they aren't permitted or perfectly legal. Sorry, but those are two completely separate issues.

Which leads me to the initial question: where can I find the Attorneys sworn oath when entering into the bar in the State of California and the codes of ethics that would support their objectionable withdrawal of their assistance to represent this indigent?

You can visit the California Bar Association website at calbar.org to find information about the ethical rules that govern attorney conduct, but to be honest I don't think you have any grounds for complaint. Understand that your friend doesn't have any "right" to be represented by any one particular attorney. From what I can tell there has been absolutely NO violation of anyone's rights. Your friend needs to spend his energy on finding a new lawyer instead of on this issue.

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"[M]y question is this can they withdrawal from the

indigents case without an explanation, doesn’t it stigmatizes the indigents merits with their withdrawal irreparably damaging his case by casting it in a category of meritless claims?"

No. The merits of a client's case are determined by the facts of the case; the fact that his lawyer withdrew does not itself indicate anything about the strength, or lack of it, of the client's case.

"Does

the indigent have some sort of recourse if Attorneys grounds for

withdrawing from the case are perfectly invalid (the key word is invalid.) Does he have any recourse in the law?"

Generally a lawyer doesn't need a much of a reason for withdrawing from a case. A court will typically grant withdrawal when requested unless the timing of the withdrawal will have a serious adverse impact on the client's case. This is more than just the impact arising from the normal disruption in switching to a new lawyer or the prospect that the client might have to represent himself. For example, if the attorney sought to withdraw on the eve of trial such that a new attorney or the client representing himself would not have the time to prepare for the trial then the court might deny the attorney's request to withdraw.

"Which

leads me to the initial question: where can I find the Attorneys sworn

oath when entering into the bar in the State of California and the

codes of ethics that would support their objectionable withdrawal of

their assistance to represent this indigent?"

The oath requirement is found in section 6067 of the CA State Bar Act. It simply states as follows:

"Every person on his admission shall take an oath to support the

Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of

California, and faithfully to discharge the duties of any attorney at

law to the best of his knowledge and ability. A certificate of the oath

shall be indorsed upon his license. (Origin: Code Civ. Proc., § 278.)"

That oath requirement can be found on CA bar web site at:

http://calbar.org/pub250/b/s0098.htm

As you can see, this is a very basic oath that says nothing about an obligation to represent the indigent.

You can find the CA rules of professional conduct from the CA bar web site at:

http://www.calbar.ca.gov/state/calbar/calbar_extend.jsp?cid=10158

Again, you will see no rule there that requires lawyers to represent indigent persons.

"Because the

difference between us and him is that he is imprisoned—we are not—he is

indigent—we are not--he has merits—we did not with this said what could

be more objectionable than by hiding behind the rules of ethics and not

enforcing, protecting a citizens’ rights."

You seem to start with the conclusion that the attorney was obligated to represent this indigent person. But, as I noted above, the attorney may withdraw in most circumstances and does not need much of a reason for doing so. Not getting paid is certainly sufficient in most cases to support withdrawal. Without knowing the details of the case, the attorney's arrangement with the client and the relationship between the client and the attorney I cannot say what was going on or whether the attorney was justified in claiming ethics were the reason for his withdrawal.

You don't have to like that the attorney withdrew. However, the fact that court allowed the withdrawal indicates that the lawyer was indeed entitled to withdraw from the case, whatever his reasons for it were.

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Thank You for your earnest reply, it's fair honest and without a tinge of unecessary sarcasm your response is well appreciated.

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"can they withdrawal from the indigents case without an explanation"

If a lawyer is counsel of record in a case pending before the courts, withdrawal is permitted only with the client's consent or a court order.

"doesn’t it stigmatizes the indigents merits with their withdrawal irreparably damaging his case by casting it in a category of meritless claims."

I can't imagine why that would be the case, but, in the abstract, I suppose just about anything is possible.

"Does the indigent have some sort of recourse if Attorneys grounds for withdrawing from the case are perfectly invalid (the key word is invalid.) Does he have any recourse in the law?"

See my response above.

where can I find the Attorneys sworn oath when entering into the bar in the State of California and the codes of ethics"

Here's a link to the Rules of Professional Conduct: http://calbar.ca.gov/state/calbar/calbar_extend.jsp?cid=10158.

Here's a link to the Business & Professions Code: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/calawquery?codesection=bpc&codebody=&hits=20. Chapter 4 of Division 3 (starting with Section 6000) concerns attorneys.

As for the oath we take, I imagine it's somewhere at the State Bar's web site or in the B&P Code, but it's largely irrelevant because, as I recall, it's full of vague stuff about the defending the Constitution and upholding the laws of the State.

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To the posted 3:04 answer Thanks again: Just one more question just so I could understand the “access to justice”pro bono program how does the pro bono volunteer specifically function, does it work by;

(a) lottery style assignment, or ;

(B) a specific area in law, or does;

© the attorney or firm evaluate individual application that was granted before they request to take on the responsibility in “providing their most invaluable assistance benefiting the indigents by protecting his interest ”Buss.& Prof. Code Sec.6073.

For the purpose of my question I would assume that its [C] because it fairly reaches its entire goal in providing attorney in the area of law that is required by the case.

Please don’t misunderstand me I know perfectly well that this incident is a misfit it have never occured but then again we don't live in perfect world Heck the Sixth amendment is the vanguard the backbone of free society without Counsel's Assistance we will be under a tyranical Govt which the forefathers envisioned when the Constitution was drafted. What I am just trying to understand is the process for example did the case just land on their lap unknowingly, did counsel volunteer for pro bono services, was it a draw of hat.

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