Tom Wilkinson, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Commercial Litigation department, discusses how harassment and discrimination now violate ABA model ethics rules in the ABA Litigation News. The ABA has amended Model Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4 to specifically prohibit conduct "a lawyer knows or reasonably should know is harassment or discrimination on the basis of race, sex, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status or socioeconomic status in conduct related to the practice of law." The amendment does not, however, "preclude legitimate advice or advocacy." To some, criminal remedies helped get the amendment passed. "There was no clamor among state bar disciplinary counsels for adoption of this rule change, in part because egregious instances of misconduct already tend to result in harassment lawsuits and employment law claims," says Tom.
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