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Rule 5.3: Responsibilities Regarding Nonlawyer Assistants

ABA RULE 5.3 


Adopted, Effective Jan. 1, 2008

LAW FIRMS AND ASSOCIATIONS
Rule 5.3: Responsibilities Regarding Nonlawyer Assistants

With respect to a nonlawyer employed or retained by or associated with a lawyer:

    (a)  Each partner, andeach lawyer who individually or together with other lawyers possesses comparable managerial authority in a law firm shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable assurance that the person's conduct is compatible with the professional obligations of the lawyer;

    (b)  Each lawyer having direct supervisory authority over the nonlawyer shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the person's conduct is compatible with the professional obligations of the lawyer; and

    (c)  a lawyer shall be responsible for conduct of such a person that would be a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct if engaged in by a lawyer if:

        (1) the lawyer orders or, with the knowledge of the specific conduct, ratifies the conduct involved; or

        (2) the lawyer is a partner or has comparable managerial authority in the law firm in which the person is employed, or has direct supervisory authority over the person, and knows of the conduct at a time when its consequences can be avoided or mitigated but fails to take reasonable remedial action.

 
NEW HAMPSHIRE COMMENTS

The New Hampshire version of the rule differs from the ABA Model Rule only in the substitution of “each” for “a” in sections (a) and (b).  The change is intended to emphasize that the obligations created by the rule are shared by all of the managers of a law firm and cannot be delegated to one manager by the others.


ABA RULE 5.3 

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