Legal scale in an empty courtroom, black and white photo.

Court of Appeals Discusses Elected Prosecutor Conflicts

Division III of the Washington State Court of Appeals recently, in a split decision, drew from a 1988 death penalty case to refine the determination for when a prosecutor’s client conflict might extend to the office as a whole. State v. Nickels, ___ Wn. App. 2d___, 434 P.3d 535, 2019 WL 479494 (Feb. 7, 2019) […]

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Supreme Court Approves RPC Amendments on Imputed Conflicts

The Supreme Court recently approved Rules of Professional Conduct amendments addressing imputed conflicts for public defenders. The Washington Supreme Court recently approved a package of related Rules of Professional Conduct (RPC) amendments addressing imputed conflicts for public defenders. “Imputed” conflicts are those shared by all law practitioners working in a single firm. Some public defenders […]

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Cover of June NWLawyer

The Business of Ag and More in NWLawyer

There were 6.8 million farms in the U.S. in 1935, according to the USDA, which was enough for one out of every 20 Americans to have their own farm. But as the years wore on and the country went through revolutionary changes in industry and infrastructure, the number of farms slipped lower and lower to the most recent count of just over 2 million farms, even as the total population has more than doubled.

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Legal marijuana sign in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood.

New Marijuana-Related Amendments to Rules of Professional Conduct

After voters approved Initiative 502 in November 2012 permitting and regulating “recreational” marijuana, questions immediately arose regarding the extent to which lawyers could advise and assist clients in state-authorized marijuana businesses. Washington RPC 1.2(d), like its ABA Model Rule counterpart, generally permits lawyers to advise clients on the legality of proposed conduct but prohibits lawyers […]

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Abstract depiction of a scale and gavel

Court of Appeals: Claiming Attorney Fees as Damages Waives Privilege

Attorney-client privilege is waived when claiming attorney fees for the work involved as damages, a Court of Appeals rules. Division I of the Washington Court of Appeals held recently that the attorney-client privilege is waived when claiming attorney fees for the work involved as damages in a subsequent legal malpractice case. Leen v. Defoe, 2018 […]

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A crowd of bidders at an auction.

May I Donate My Legal Services at a Charity Auction?

Attorneys sometimes call the WSBA Ethics Line – 800-945-9722 ext. 8284 – wondering if they can offer legal services at a charity auction. Often, they have concerns that it might violate ethics rules, but they aren’t sure which ones. While there are reasons to be careful about auctioning your services, a properly set up donation […]

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