The ABA and state bar associations issue ethics opinions in response to attorney requests for advice. These advisory opinions help attorneys better understand ethical conduct under the Model Rules or Model Code.
Though not legally enforceble, these opinions show how a bar association has interpreted a particular rule or code. There are both formal and informal opinions, where formal opinions pertain to matters of general interest to the bar, while informal opinions pertain to specific factual situations.
The ABA's Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility issues formal and informal ethics opinions. Sources for these opinions include:
In Georgia since 1986, the process of drafting ethics opinions starts with the Formal Advisory Opinions Board of the State Bar of Georgia. The Board drafts a proposed advisory opinion and, after receiving comments and feedback from the legal community, files the opinion with the Supreme Court of Georgia. The Court reviews the proposal and, if adopted, issues a Formal Advisory Opinion.
State discipline boards issue disciplinary actions against attorneys who violate the ethics rules of their prospective states.
These disciplinary actions, which include reprimands, suspensions, formal admonitions, or disbarment, can be made public or kept confidential. If made public, attorney disciplinary actions are usually published in state bar journals. Many states also publish disciplinary actions on state bar association or state judicial websites.
Use the following to locate state attorney disciplinary actions from Georgia:
To locate state attorney disciplinary actions:
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