LEO: Conflict of Interest - Disclosure -  LE Op. 1134


Conflict of Interest - Disclosure - Multiple Representation - Personal

Injury Representation: Attorney Representing Husband in Personal

Injury Claim After Having Settled Wife/Passenger's Claim.


October 18, 1988


You advised you had been retained by a family who was in a motor vehicle

accident within your locality. The husband was the driver of the

automobile, and the wife and children were passengers. The children's

claims were resolved in General District Court. You filed suit on behalf

of the wife in Circuit Court. Subsequently her husband, the driver, was

sued in a third party motion for judgment. At that time you notified all

appropriate parties and withdrew from representation of the husband,

whereupon the husband retained services of another attorney for his

personal injury claim.


The wife's case is settled and the husband's carrier contributed to the

settlement. The husband now requests you resume representation of him in

this claim against the driver of the other automobile. You wish to know

whether you may now represent him in this claim.


Disciplinary Rule 5-105(D) states that a lawyer who has represented a

client in a matter shall not thereafter represent another person in the

same or substantially related matter if the interest of that person is

adverse in any material respect to the interest of the former client

unless the former client consents after the disclosure. Further, DR:5-

105(C) states the lawyer may represent multiple clients if it is obvious

that he can adequately represent the interest of each party and each party

consents to the representation after full disclosure of the possible

effect of such representation on the exercise of his independent

professional judgment on behalf of each.


The Committee opines that it would not be improper for you to represent

the husband as long as full disclosure is made to both parties and consent

received by the wife, your former client.


Committee Opinion October 18, 1988




See also LE Op. 1354.