Ethics Update for Virginia Lawyers 2021 (Online Seminar)

MCLE Credits: 2.0
Ethics Credits Included: 2.0

MCLE Credit: 2.0 (Ethics: 2.0)
Live-Interactive Credit: 0.0
Designation Credit: 2.0 Ethics (Designations Information)
Price: $149 (Includes a downloadable audio version.)
Viewable Through: 01/31/2022


A pre-recorded streaming AUDIO replay of the April 2021 webcast, Ethics Update for Virginia Lawyers 2021.

Course Outline

  • Stay up to date on the latest changes and case law affecting the practice of law
  • Hear from the people who run Virginia’s system
  • Virginia CLE®’s most popular program—well over 1,000 attendees every year!

Legal ethics is now one of the most dynamic and difficult areas of law. Every year, there are significant changes to and new interpretations of existing ethics rules, all of which can profoundly affect your daily practice. This seminar helps you keep up to date and helps you avoid potential ethics traps.


Review of the Most Significant Disciplinary Cases from the Past Year, Plus Rule and Procedural Changes

  • Disciplinary statistics
  • Competency, neglect and abandonment of client matters, failure to communicate
  • Fraud, deceit, and misrepresentation
  • Trust account and fee issues
  • Noncompliance with terms
  • Criminal conduct and convictions
  • Impairment investigations and receiverships
  • Appeals

Hot Topics in the Law of Ethics

  • COVID-19: Do lawyers working remotely from home in a jurisdiction in which they are not licensed have an unauthorized practice problem? ABA Formal Op. 495 (December 20, 2020)
  • Friend or Foe?—Conflicts Arising Out of Personal Relationships with Opposing Counsel. ABA Formal Op. 494 (July 29, 2020)
  • “Thanks for Stopping By — Now I Am Suing You.” Representing clients against prospective clients, Rule 1.18 and “significantly harmful information.” ABA Formal Op. 492 (June 9, 2020)
  • Communications with Employees of a Represented Organization—Supreme Court of Virginia rewrites Comment [7] to Rule 4.2 (January 6, 2021)
  • Representing Crooks or Fraudsters: Avoiding Assisting or Counseling Clients Engaged in Fraud or Crime—Rule 1.2(c), ABA MR 1.2(d) and ABA Formal Op. 491 (April 29, 2020)
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Renu M. Brennan, Virginia State Bar / Richmond
Bernard J. DiMuro, DiMuroGinsberg / Alexandria
James M. McCauley, Virginia State Bar / Richmond
Elizabeth K. Shoenfeld, Virginia State Bar / Richmond


Renu M. Brennan, Virginia State Bar / Richmond
Renu Brennan is the Bar Counsel for the Virginia State Bar.  She served as Deputy Executive Director of the VSB from 2016 to 2018, and as Assistant Bar Counsel for the Bar from 2008 to 2016. Ms. Brennan is Secretary of the Virginia Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program (formerly “Lawyers Helping Lawyers”) and is a member of the ABA Standing Committee on Client Protection. She was a faculty member for the Virginia State Bar Harry L. Carrico Professionalism Course from 2008 to 2011, and she has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Virginia since 2007. She also served as co-chair of the Judicial Nominations Committee of APABA-VA from 2009 to 2011. Ms. Brennan participated as an instructor in the Virginia Bar Association’s Rule of Law program. Prior to coming to the Bar, she was a partner with the firm of Vandeventer Black, LLP, where she handled professional malpractice and commercial litigation. From 1998 to 2004, Ms. Brennan was with the firm of Wright, Robinson, Osthimer & Tatum in Richmond, Virginia. She is licensed in Virginia, the District of Columbia, and California, where she practiced in Los Angeles. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and a law degree from Boston University School of Law.

Bernard J. DiMuro, DiMuroGinsberg, PC / Alexandria
Bernard J. DiMuro is the managing partner of the Alexandria law firm of DiMuroGinsberg, PC. He represents clients in complex civil litigation and professional responsibility cases. He was formerly a chairman and member of the Eighth District Grievance Committee and chairman of the Virginia Supreme Court Disciplinary Board. Mr. DiMuro also has been a faculty member of the Virginia State Bar Professionalism Course, a member of the VSB Committee to Study the Code of Professional Responsibility, and a president of the Virginia State Bar. He assists business clients and their general counsel in litigation management and in the audit of legal fees and legal services.

James M. McCauley, Virginia State Bar / Richmond
James M. McCauley is the Ethics Counsel for the Virginia State Bar. He serves as staff liaison to the Virginia State Bar’s Standing Committee on Legal Ethics and manages the staff in the Legal Ethics Department and the Legal Ethics Hotline. Mr. McCauley served on the faculty of the Virginia State Bar’s Mandatory Professionalism Course from 2004-2010. For 15 years Mr. McCauley taught Professional Responsibility at the T.C. Williams School of Law in Richmond, Virginia and served on the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Legal Ethics and Professionalism from 2008-2011.  In 2018, Mr. McCauley was elected “Leader of the Year” in the Virginia Lawyers Weekly “Leaders in the Law” awards program. He serves on the Planning Committee for the ABA’s Center for Professional Responsibility Annual Conference and the Lawyer Advertising Committee for the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers.  Mr. McCauley is a Fellow of the Virginia Law Foundation and American Bar Foundation.  He is also on the Board of Directors for the Virginia Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program (VJLAP).

Elizabeth K. Shoenfeld, Virginia State Bar / Richmond
Elizabeth Shoenfeld is a Senior Assistant Bar Counsel for the Virginia State Bar, where she investigates and prosecutes ethical misconduct complaints against attorneys practicing in Virginia. Prior to joining the Bar in 2015, she had a national litigation practice, focusing on defending automotive manufacturers in product liability actions.  Since joining the Bar, she has spoken throughout the Commonwealth on a number of ethics-related issues.  In her free time, she enjoys running in local races and after her two daughters, ages 10 and 7.

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