Texts, Ethical Rules and Other Thoughts on Technology

Those of us with teenage children know that “texting” is the preferred communication method of the young. But texting is no longer just for casual conversations between friends. Increasingly, texting has become the modus operandi of our clients and others with whom we do business. This new wave of client communication has led to a host of quandaries on ethical rules and professionalism.

Fortunately, the ethical rules are elastic enough to provide guidance even though the available methods of communication seem to be changing monthly. The rules proscribe behavior regardless of the means used. For example, the confidentiality of information governed by Rule 1.6 requires a lawyer not to reveal information relating to the representation of a client regardless of the method that could be chosen.

Unlike ethics, professionalism cannot be condensed to clear ethical rules. Rather, as modern lawyers, we must remain aware of core concepts of professionalism as we collect more devices and engage in digital communication. Simultaneously, we must consider how technology has transformed the information that we provide clients, and the various ways we use to communicate that information.  READ MORE

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