Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Utah Supreme Court Standards of Professionalism and Civility - an assertion to which I welcome reasoned responses
Utah Supreme Court Standards of Professionalism and Civility - an assertion to which I welcome reasoned responses:
I was recently asked this question: What's the most effective way to deal with fellow lawyers who exploit my good will and generally lie and cheat their ways through a case?
Grab the bull by the horns and take these shysters to task. You’ll do more for professionalism and civility than any list of 20 commandments alone could ever do.
The Utah Supreme Court and the Utah State Bar apparently believe that by calling the shyster problem a matter of "professionalism and civility," we miraculously dispose of shysters by relabeling them as merely "uncivil" and/or "unprofessional."
The problem with this kind of thinking is that shysters by any other name still stink as much as ever, and if we think we can solve the problem by writing aspirational, non-binding "Standards," all we succeed in doing is sending the tacit--though very clear--message that while shysterism may be eloquently condemned, it will not be actively hunted down and eradicated. If shysters remain unchecked, and even allowed to wield the Standards as swords in the service of their sharp practices, the shysters win, and propogate.