Ethical Considerations: Independent Professional Judgment, Candid Advice, and Reference to Nonlegal Considerations

The Article argues that Rule 2.1 is the hub that links most of the essential requirements placed by the Model Rules of Professional Conduct on lawyers representing clients. The Article begins with a look at current issues facing practicing attorneys and then considers those issues within the framework of Rule 2.1. The rule reflects historic and valued principles of the legal profession, among them independence, detachment, competence, and fidelity to each client. The Article states that these principles, for more than a century, have provided the response to questions about why lawyers behave as they do and concludes that lawyers should not be embarrassed to assert them again in responding to current criticisms.