LAW 565-001 – Professional Responsibility

Truthfulness


In the course of representing a client a lawyer shall not knowingly:

  1. make a false statement of material fact or law to a third person; or
  2. fail to disclose a material fact to a third person when disclosure is necessary to avoid assisting a criminal or fraudulent act by a client, unless disclosure is prohibited by Rule 1.6.

This Rule refers to statements of fact. Whether a particular statement should be regarded as one of fact can depend on the circumstances. Under generally accepted conventions in negotiation, certain types of statements ordinarily are not taken as statements of material fact. Estimates of price or value placed on the subject of a transaction and a party's intentions as to an acceptable settlement of a claim are ordinarily in this category . . . .

  • Lying about what your client will accept in negotiations is not unethical under the rules.

A claim for which the statute of limitations has run can still be negotiated without disclosure.

A lawyer should also not lie to his client. This is probably prohibited by Rule 8.4(c) and/or Rule 1.4.