College splashes out on plant pots

first_imgBrasenose has allegedly spent £18,000 on plants and plant pots emblazoned with the college’s iconic knocker as part of their quincentenary anniversary celebrations in 2009.The quads of Brasenose have been littered with an array of plants and pots, though the flora and fauna are already withering and wilting in the cold. The Bursary refused to deny that they had spent the reported amount of money on plants and plant pots.Students and staff alike expressed bemusement over the amount purportedly spent of the plant pots. One student remarked, “I was quite impressed to think that we were a college so satisfied and contented by our financial prowess that such a sum could be deemed viable.”Members of the JCR were quick to suggest other ways in which college money could be spent. One finalist suggested, “hiring a boiler-man – or several at that price – to work out how to control temperature in the library – I go in there merely to perspire.”Another student proposed “room improvements, student welfare, or a sizable contribution to our ever diminishing sports funds. They could even lower the price of college accommodation if that’s the excess of cash they’ve got lying around.”last_img read more

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College celebrates season with Madrigal dinner

first_imgSaint Mary’s Music Department will usher in the Christmas season this weekend with its 39th annual Madrigal dinner, a medieval-themed feast and musical performance. Junior Toni Marsteller, who scripted and directed the performance and is cast as the Wench, said the theatrics and music are interwoven in the meal rather than preceding or following it. “[The dinner features] Renaissance and medieval-style music, and there are actors who provide a little comedy throughout the dinner,” she said. Music professor Nancy Menk, who will direct the Madrigal for the 28th time, said the choir performances will include a combination of traditional songs with a few fresh selections. “Some songs are standards,” Menk said. “We always sing the Wassail Song when we bring out the Wassail bowl, we always sing ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas,’ and each year I try to add one or two new songs.” First year Katie Corbett plays the role of the Jester, who taunts the other characters throughout the performance. “I’m an acting major, so I read for the Jester role, and it sounded really funny,” she said. “I’m really excited, but I’m also a little nervous. I hope everyone enjoys the show.” Corbett’s Jester conspires with junior Sophie Korson’s character, the Cook, to play tricks on the Wench. Korson, who has never participated in the Madrigal dinner before, said she decided to take part simply for the fun of it. “It sounded like fun, and I was open to trying it out,” she said. Sophomore Lauren Murphy, a member of the Women’s Choir performing at the dinner, said the performance helps spread the Christmas cheer around campus. “I like dressing up and getting into character,” she said. “The show really helps set the tone for the Christmas season.” Over her nearly three decades at the helm of the Madrigal, Wenk said the tradition has evolved significantly. “Before my time, they actually stopped the show and did an opera right in the middle of the show,” she said. “One of the major changes was to change from a co-ed to an all-women’s choir, about seven or eight years ago, to better represent Saint Mary’s College.” Menk said she is amazed by the transformative effect the show has on Regina Hall, where it is presented. “The girls look so beautiful in their dresses and the room looks amazing,” she said. “By the time we’re done with it, it’s amazing to think it’s just a dorm lounge.” The Madrigal dinner will be celebrated Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.last_img read more

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Candidate Profile: LaMagna/Andresen

first_imgWho they are: Presidential candidate Olivia LaMagna is a junior from Farley Hall studying political science and business economics. She hails from Carmel, Ind., and currently serves as the junior class president. Her running mate, Rohan Andresen, is a sophomore from Siegfried Hall studying business and political science. The Phoenix, Ariz., native, is the senator from Siegfried Hall and a member of student government’s Department of National Engagement and Outreach.LaMagna and Andresen said the overarching theme of their campaign is maximizing each student’s experience at Notre Dame, focusing on the question “how do you ND?”“I feel that there’s one story you’re told as a freshman about what your experience at Notre Dame is going to be, but there’s a huge range of opportunities to explore on this campus,” LaMagna said.First priority: Review student government procedures and come up with best practices for organizing a cabinet and a planning timeline for initiatives. LaMagna said her experience on Junior Class Council with Anderson’s background as a hall senator will give each a unique but complementary view on how student government operates and how they can maximize its efficiency.Top priority: Focus on every individual member of the student body and enable each to meet his or her full potential, in whatever way he or she wants. This overarching campaign strategy provides a focal point for their academic, community engagement and programming initiatives.“We want to get rid of the red tape and barriers that hold students back,” Andresen said. “When each student is seen as their own unique person and when that uniqueness is recognized, that’s when you have a diverse campus.”Best Idea: LaMagna and Andersen hope to create a more collaborative relationship between Notre Dame and South Bend, and LaMagna said she wants students to understand that South Bend is much more than a convenient location in which to do service work.“There’s not enough respect for what residents of South Bend can bring to undergraduates at the University of Notre Dame,” LaMagna said. “We want to increase accessibility to the city of South Bend.”Her experience with planning and executing major events as junior class president has given her insight into how to navigate the “administrative red tape” for project planning and especially approving new vendors and sites, LaMagna said.Worst Idea: Their plan to organize a group of undergraduate and graduate students who could teach one-credit specialized classes in areas such as computer programming seems impossible. While the goal of helping students broaden their technical skill sets and branch out beyond the classes required for their majors is good, it would be very difficult to get off the ground. Perhaps organizing a set of independent workshops or lectures on such topics would be more doable, instead of orchestrating it within the class registration and DART systems.Most feasible: Appoint two students, one male and one female, to serve as co-chairs of the Gender Relations Department of student government.“We want to start bringing a diversity of perspectives into that [conversation] because we don’t want it to be … a one-sided discussion,” LaMagna said. “We want everyone to feel like gender relations is something that matters to them, because if you’re a person on this campus, it affects you.”Least feasible: The two hope to break barriers between the different colleges and academic departments by allowing students to register for classes outside of their declared majors.“Right now, students can’t take classes outside of their colleges once they’ve declared,” Andresen said. “We want to be able to open up classes for students outside of their major.”They propose that a time limit be set on the DART system so that first, students who need a particular class for their majors are guaranteed seats. After official DARTing has ended, LaMagna and Andresen hope to open up registration to students outside the college under which the class is listed.Although this plan would offer students more academic freedom, it does not seem feasible given the labyrinth of prerequisite and co-requisite courses often listed. While perhaps general elective courses could be opened up, department chairs would likely resist open enrollment in more advanced, major-specific courses.Notable quote: “This is probably about 10 percent of all the ideas we’ve come up with. That other 90 percent have just been scrapped because of conversations with people, whether that be students or administrators. … These ideas that we have in the platform have had a lot of thought and a lot of discussion.” — AndresenFun Fact: LaMagna said she is an extremely organized person with “spreadsheets that terrify people,” but her dorm room is incredibly messy. Andresen, on the other hand, keeps an impeccable room and “can barely leave without dusting something.”Bottom line: Their platform reflects a comprehensive examination of real student desires, and the two leverage their energy and enthusiasm to come up with new, bold ideas. Their student government experience prepares them for success in future roles, and their focus on programming, as well as on enabling and empowering individual students, suggests they would have a dynamic, visible presence on campus next year.Tags: 2014 Election, Election, Student Body President, Student governmentlast_img read more

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Dealing with bullies

first_imgBy Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaEveryone will be bullied at one time in their lives. It will most likely happen at school. If your child is being bullied, there are things you can do to help stop it. Bullying can come in many forms. But it can include, physical or emotional abuse, damage to a child’s property, spreading malicious rumors or forcing a child to do something he or she doesn’t want to do, says Sharon Gibson, a family and consumer science educator with the University of Georgia Extension Service.Don’t ignoreA consistently bullied student can have emotional problems and can begin to perform poorly in school. And if the bullying is physical, it can take its toll on the student’s body.Don’t ignore the problem. And don’t tell your child to ignore the bully.“When a child is bullied, he or she may feel angry, helpless or deserted,” Gibson said. “If that child tells a teacher or parent about the bullying, they need to know that it is not tattling and that speaking about it was the right thing.”Parents can become angry at first learning a child is being bullied. “Parents should stay calm and first find out if their child is in any immediate physical danger,” she said.Contact schoolThe most important thing a parent can do is find a way to stop the bullying. Ask for a meeting with the principal of your child’s school. The principal can then determine if and when to bring the child’s teacher or teachers into the conversation.“Again, parents should stay calm. If they are not, this could set up a defensive action by school officials,” she said. “Parents should be proactive but not demanding before they learn more about the situation at school.”Teachers and principals train to deal with issues like bullying, she said. Parents should voice concerns but listen too. Most schools have an action plan to deal with bully situations. If the school doesn’t, the parent should offer to help develop a plan.The child doing the bullying should be given a chance to reform. The bullied child should have an adult contact at school to tell if the bullying doesn’t stop. This person could be the teacher or a paraprofessional.There is a lot going on in the average classroom. A teacher or paraprofessional can have their hands full all day. It can be tough to concentrate on one child.Gibson recommends a codeword be established for the bullied child to use when he or she feels uncomfortable or in danger due to bullying. This will inform the adult without the child having to raise a hand or bring much attention. The adult can then investigate or even witness the bullying. Parents should follow up with the school to make sure steps are in place to keep all children from being bullied. Parents can also:- make sure the school has good monitoring.- keep records of bullying episodes and of any communication with the school.- work with other parents in their neighborhood to make sure children are supervised and feel safe. At home, parents should encourage good social skills and behavior. They should help their child find his or her talents and praise accomplishments, she said.last_img read more

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Colombian drug kingpin ‘Papa Grande’ pleads guilty in the U.S.

first_imgEl Lobo smuggled 900 tons of cocaine into the U.S. and Europe between 1992 and 2012. He often worked with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), a terrorist organization that supports its activities with drug trafficking money. In recent years, the Colombian National Police have seized about $250 million (USD) of his assets, including properties and businesses he owned. A former ally of Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar could spend the rest of his life in prison, thanks to a recent guilty plea in U.S. federal court. The plea came four years after he was captured by Venezuelan counter-drug agents in the city of Valencia. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Papa Grande worked with Escobar, who was one of the most notorious drug kingpins in the world. U.S. federal prosecutors indicted him on drug trafficking charges in 2002; the same year, the U.S. Justice Department designated him a Consolidated Priority Organization Target (CPOT). Salomón Camacho Mora – also known as “Papa Grande,” “El Viejo,” and “Héctor” – pleaded guilty October 15 to conspiring to traffic cocaine into the United States. In a federal court in New Jersey, Papa Grande, 70, admitted that he and members of his narco-trafficking organization shipped multi-kilogram quantities of cocaine from Colombia to Venezuelan ports. The drugs were then sold to organized crime groups and gangs in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the United States. His plea to drug charges was the second from a major Colombian narco-trafficker in recent weeks. On October 9, Daniel “El Loco” Barrera pleaded guilty in a New York federal court to conspiring to illegally launder tens of millions of dollars in cocaine-trafficking profits. He’s also expected to plead guilty to additional federal drug-trafficking charges in New York City and in Miami, and faces 20 years in prison and deportation. The plea came four years after he was captured by Venezuelan counter-drug agents in the city of Valencia. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Papa Grande worked with Escobar, who was one of the most notorious drug kingpins in the world. U.S. federal prosecutors indicted him on drug trafficking charges in 2002; the same year, the U.S. Justice Department designated him a Consolidated Priority Organization Target (CPOT). Papa Grande is scheduled to be sentenced on March 10, 2015. He faces a sentence of 10 years to life in prison, and is likely to be ordered to forfeit $1.6 million (USD) and relinquish eight properties in Colombia. A former ally of Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar could spend the rest of his life in prison, thanks to a recent guilty plea in U.S. federal court. Papa Grande is scheduled to be sentenced on March 10, 2015. He faces a sentence of 10 years to life in prison, and is likely to be ordered to forfeit $1.6 million (USD) and relinquish eight properties in Colombia. El Lobo smuggled 900 tons of cocaine into the U.S. and Europe between 1992 and 2012. He often worked with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), a terrorist organization that supports its activities with drug trafficking money. In recent years, the Colombian National Police have seized about $250 million (USD) of his assets, including properties and businesses he owned. Salomón Camacho Mora – also known as “Papa Grande,” “El Viejo,” and “Héctor” – pleaded guilty October 15 to conspiring to traffic cocaine into the United States. In a federal court in New Jersey, Papa Grande, 70, admitted that he and members of his narco-trafficking organization shipped multi-kilogram quantities of cocaine from Colombia to Venezuelan ports. The drugs were then sold to organized crime groups and gangs in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the United States. His plea to drug charges was the second from a major Colombian narco-trafficker in recent weeks. On October 9, Daniel “El Loco” Barrera pleaded guilty in a New York federal court to conspiring to illegally launder tens of millions of dollars in cocaine-trafficking profits. He’s also expected to plead guilty to additional federal drug-trafficking charges in New York City and in Miami, and faces 20 years in prison and deportation. By Dialogo October 20, 2014last_img read more

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March 1, 2003 Notices

first_imgMarch 1, 2003 Notices The Board of Governors is seeking applicants for the following vacancies for nominations to be submitted to Governor Bush on or before June 3, 2003:Judicial Nominating Commissions: One lawyer vacancy for each of the 26 JNCs. The Florida Bar must nominate three lawyers for each vacancy to the governor for his appointment. Each appointee will serve a four-year term, commencing July 1. Applicants must be engaged in the practice of law and a resident of the territorial jurisdiction served by the commission to which the member is applying. Applicants must comply with state financial disclosure laws. Commissioners are not eligible for state judicial office for vacancies filled by the JNC on which they sit for two years following completion of their 4-year term.Applications must be completed for each vacancy applied for and must be received by mail or fax, (850) 561-5826 no later than 5:30 p.m., Friday, March 21, the executive director’s office of The Florida Bar. Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of an application. Screening committees of the Board of Governors will review all JNC applications. The committee will then make recommendations to the Board of Governors.Persons interested in applying for any of these vacancies may download the proper application form (there is a specific JNC application) from the Bar’s Web site, www.flabar.org, or should call Bar headquarters at (850) 561-5600, ext. 6627, to obtain the application. Completed applications must be received by John F. Harkness, Jr., Executive Director, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee 32399-2300 by the March 21 deadline.Bar Board to make April appointment The Board of Governors is seeking applicants for the following vacancies to be filled during its April 4 meeting:Supreme Court’s Bar Admissions Committee: One lawyer to serve a two-year staggered term commencing July 1. This Supreme Court committee, which is authorized under Rule 1-26.2 of the Rules Relating to Admissions to the Bar, coordinates the work of the bench, bar, law schools, and bar examiners. It consists of 13 members, two of whom are designated by the Board of Governors. Persons interested in applying for these vacancies may download the application from the Bar’s Web site, www.FLABAR.org, or call Bar headquarters at (850) 561-5600, ext. 6802, to obtain an application form. Completed applications must be submitted to John F. Harkness, Jr., Executive Director, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee 32399-2300 no later than close of business, Friday, March 7. Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of an application.Stetson seeks service award nomineesStetson University College of Law is seeking nominations for the 2003 Wm. Reece Smith, Jr., Public Service Award.The award will be presented at the law school’s May 10 graduation ceremonies. The deadline for nominations is March 21.“The William Reece Smith Jr. Award recognizes individuals who have demonstrated exemplary achievements in public service,” said Dean Gary Vause. “I encourage the legal community to submit the names of candidates who have made contributions in their community.”Last year’s award was presented to Karen Lopez, who played a major role in forming the Community Law Program Inc., a St. Petersburg nonprofit organization that provides pro bono legal services to those who cannot afford an attorney.Nominations should be sent to Dean W. Gary Vause, Stetson University College of Law, 1401 61st. Street South, Gulfport 33707.Second ‘For the Public Good’ evening setThe Second Annual “For the Public Good,” an evening of awards and entertainment, is set for May 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six in Ft. Lauderdale.The event honors those in the Broward community who have demonstrated leadership in helping all people, regardless of income level, gain access to justice. It is intended to increase the involvement of individual attorneys, law firms, community leaders, and businesses in legal aid’s mission to help people achieve self-sufficiency through the resolution of legal issues.Benefits from the event go to Legal Aid Service of Broward County’s children’s programs.For more information contact Debby Sullivan at (954) 765-8957, ext 279.Bankruptcy training conference setThe Association of Bankruptcy Judicial Assistants plans a bankruptcy training conference, seminar, and examination June 18-20 in New Orleans.ABJA is a national organization created to encourage the highest standard of conduct and educate its members. Secretaries/judicial assistants holding appointments by United States bankruptcy judges are eligible for membership in the ABJA. Additionally, certified bankruptcy assistants are eligible for associate membership in the ABJA.“One of the primary objectives of the ABJA has been the development of educational programs for our members and the bankruptcy legal community,” according to the organization. “Understanding that certification in a particular field can promote and maintain professional standards, our Continuing Legal Education Committee developed and modified, for non-lawyer persons, a ‘Bankruptcy Certification Program’.. . to enable secretaries/assistants, paralegals, and individuals in the legal profession to keep pace with new developments and will be an effective quality improvement mechanism for employers.”The midyear ABJA Bankruptcy Certification Program will begin at 8 a.m. on Thursday June 19, at the Hotel Monteleone, 214 Rue Royale Street, in New Orleans. The seminar fee for this two-day program is $125 and includes a “Meet the Speakers Reception” on Wednesday evening, breakfast and break refreshments on Thursday and Friday, and all program materials.The certified bankruptcy assistant examination fee is $99. A study guide is available for $25. This study guide includes a review of materials to be presented and a sample examination. The CBA registration deadline is May 19.A block of rooms is being held at the Hotel Monteleone (800) 217-2033. To take advantage of the special rate of $89 per night, reservations must be made no later than May 19. To obtain the special group rate, advise the reservationist that you will be attending the Certified Bankruptcy Assistant Seminar and Examination.For more visit the ABJA Web site at www.abja.org or call Martie Kantor at (850) 942-8943 or e-mail Martie_Kantor @flnb.uscourts.gov.Proposed board actionsPursuant to Standing Board Policy 1.60, the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar hereby publishes this corrected notice of intent to consider or take final action at its April 2-4 meeting on the following items. These matters are additionally governed by Rule 1-12.1, Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, where applicable.Most amendments to the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar that are finally acted upon by the board must still be formally presented to the Supreme Court, with further notice and opportunity to be heard, before they are officially approved and become effective.To receive a full copy of the text of any of these proposed amendments call (850) 561-5600, ext. 6802 — reference any requested proposal by its title or item number and date of this publication.RULES REGULATING THE FLORIDA BAR Chapter 4 Rules of Professional ConductSubchapter 4-1 Client-Lawyer Relationship1. Rule 4-1.5 Fees for Legal ServicesSummary: Within comment, adds language to suggest that lawyers should discuss with the client, where appropriate, other alternate billing methods beyond an hourly or fixed fee rate.Chapter 10 Rules Governing the Investigation and Prosecution of The Unlicensed Practice of LawSubchapter 10-6 Procedures for Investigation2. Rule 10-6.2 SubpoenasSummary: Within subdivision (a), clarifies that a subpoena may be issued for the attendance of a person, for the production of documents, or for both.Subchapter 10-7 Proceedings Before a Referee3. Rule 10-7.1 Proceedings for Injunctive ReliefSummary: Within subdivision (c), adds new provisions to codify current practice and to require that a pretrial case management conference be held within 60 days of appointment of a referee; revises other subdivision entries as editorially appropriate to accommodate this new matter.U.S. Army command seeks chief counselThe U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command located at Ft. Monmouth, New Jersey, is recruiting candidates to fill the position of chief counsel.This is a senior executive service position, and the executive level requirements warrant an extensive search for candidates with outstanding qualifications and experience.The individual selected for this position will manage the total legal program for communications-electronics systems. The organization is responsible for a broad range of legal programs to include acquisition law, patent law, general law, military law, personnel law, intellectual property, adversary proceedings, and staff judge advocate support services. The chief counsel will provide legal support to programs with a multi-billion dollar value.Questions regarding application procedures or employment with the Army may be directed to Tom Peters, (703) 617-8585.Marsicano Award nominations soughtThe City, County and Local Government Law Section is now accepting nominations for its Ralph A. Marsicano Award.The award is given to a lawyer who has made a significant contribution to the practice of local government law. The award honors Marsicano who served Tampa for more than 30 years as an assistant, and often acting, city attorney. He was often considered the “Dean of U.S. City Attorneys.”Nominations must be submitted in writing to Carol Kirkland, section administrator, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee 32399-2300, and be accompanied by a summary of the nominee’s activities and accomplishments which qualify the individual for receipt of the award. A resume of the nominee’s credentials should be submitted with the written nomination. Copies may be sent to the chair of the Ralph A. Marsicano Award Committee, H. Hamilton Rice, Jr. Holland & Knight LLP, P. O. Box 1866, Bradenton 34206-1866.The deadline for receipt of nominations is Friday, April 4. The award will be presented at the City, County and Local Government Law Section’s 26th Annual Local Government Law Seminar May 9 at the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel, Tampa.Maj. Gen. Roming to speak March 8Major General Thomas J. Roming, the judge advocate general of the United States Army, will be the keynote speaker for the 2003 Military Law and Legal Assistance Symposium March 8 at the Ponce de Leon Hotel in St. Augustine.The Bar’s Military Affairs Committee also will present its 2003 Clayton B. Burton Award of Excellence at the event.The symposium includes a full program of Florida law CLE topics to help practitioners meet the challenge of providing first-rate legal service to Florida military personnel and their families. Special attention is given to the needs of military lawyers new to the state. The aim of the program is to bring civilian and military lawyers together to promote cooperation and exchange of information and resources.The cost of the event, including lunch, is $100. For more information call Karen Kelly at (800) 342-8060, ext. 5810 or e-mail [email protected] Administration Rules amendmentsThe Florida Bar Rules of Judicial Administration Committee has submitted to the Florida Supreme Court the committee’s regular-cycle report of proposed amendments to the Florida Rules of Judicial Administration. In addition to the proposals previously published, rule 2.060 is proposed to be amended as set forth below.The court invites all interested persons to comment on the committee’s proposed amendments. The amendments are reproduced in full online at www.flcourts.org/sct/sctdocs/proposed.html. An original and nine copies of all comments must be filed with the court on or before March 17, with a certificate of service verifying that a copy has been served on the committee chair, the Honorable Peter D. Webster, First District Court of Appeal, 301 S. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Tallahassee, 32399-1850, and the proponents of the various proposals, whose name and address will be provided online, as well as a separate request for oral argument if the person filing the comment wishes to participate in oral argument which may be scheduled in May. All comments must be filed in paper format and in WordPerfect 5.1 (or higher) format on a DOS formatted 3-1/2 inch diskette.IN THE SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDAAMENDMENTS TO THE RULES OF JUDICIAL ADMINISTRATION, CASE NO. SC03-105RULE 2.060. ATTORNEYS(a) Generally. All persons in good standing as members of The Florida Bar shall be permitted to practice in Florida. Attorneys of other states who are not members of The Florida Bar in good standing shall not engage in the practice of law in Florida except to the extent permitted by rule 2.061.(b) Clerks and Secretaries Staff Attorneys, Law Clerks, and Judicial Assistants Not to Practice. No one serving as a research aide or secretary staff attorney, law clerk, or judicial assistant to a justice or judge of any court shall practice as an attorney in any court or before any agency of government while continuing in that position , nor participate in any manner in any proceeding that was docketed in the court during the term of service or prior thereto. Any attorney designated by the court may represent the court, or any judge in the judge’s official capacity, in any proceeding in which the court or judge is an interested party. An attorney shall not represent anyone in connection with a matter in which the attorney participated personally and substantially as a judicial staff attorney, law clerk, or judicial assistant.(c) Pleadings to Be Signed. Every pleading and other paper of a party represented by an attorney shall be signed by at least 1 attorney of record in that attorney’s individual name whose address, telephone number, including area code, and Florida Bar number shall be stated, and who shall be duly licensed to practice law in Florida or who shall have received permission to appear in the particular case as provided in rule 2.061. The attorney may be required by the court to give the address of, and to vouch for the attorney’s authority to represent, the party. Except when otherwise specifically provided by an applicable rule or statute, pleadings need not be verified or ac-com-panied by affidavit. The signa-ture of an attorney shall constitute a certificate by the attorney that the attorney has read the pleading or other paper; that to the best of the attorney’s knowledge, information, and belief there is good ground to support it; and that it is not interposed for delay. If a pleading is not signed or is signed with intent to defeat the purpose of this rule, it may be stricken and the action may proceed as though the pleading or other paper had not been served.(d) Party Not Represented by Attorney to Sign. A party who is not represented by an attorney shall sign any pleading or other paper and state the party’s address and telephone number, including area code.(e) Form of Signature of Attorney, Party, or Other Person.(1) The signatures required on pleadings and papers by subdivisions (c) and (d) of this rule may be:(A) original signatures;(B) original signatures that have been repro-duced by electronic means, such as on electroni-cally transmitted documents or photocopied documents; or(C) any other signature format authorized by general law, so long as the clerk where the pro-ceeding is pending has the capability of receiving and has obtained approval from the Supreme Court of Florida to accept pleadings and papers with that signature format.(2) An attorney, party, or other person who files a pleading or paper by electronic transmission that does not contain the original signature of that attorney, party, or other person shall file that identical pleading or paper in paper form containing an original signature of that attorney, party, or other person (hereinafter called the follow-up filing) immediately thereafter. The follow-up filing is not required if the Supreme Court of Florida has entered an order directing the clerk of court to discontinue accepting the follow-up filing.(f) Attorney Not to Be Surety. No attorneys or other officers of court shall enter themselves or be taken as bail or surety in any proceeding in court.(g) Stipulations. No private agreement or con-sent between parties or their attorneys concerning the practice or procedure in an action shall be of any force unless the evidence of it is in writing, subscribed by the party or the party’s attorney against whom it is alleged. Parol agreements may be made before the court if promptly made a part of the record or incor-porated in the stenographic notes of the proceedings, and agreements made at depositions that are incorpo-rated in the transcript need not be signed when signing of the deposition is waived. This rule shall not apply to settlements or other substantive agreements.(h) Substitution of Attorneys. Attorneys for a party may be substituted at any time by order of court. No substitute attorney shall be permitted to appear in the absence of an order. Appearance of Attorney. An attorney may appear in a proceeding in any of the following ways:(1) By serving and filing, on behalf of a party, the party’s first pleading or paper in the proceeding. (2) By substitution of counsel, but only by order of court and with written consent of the client, filed with the court. The court may condition substitu-tion upon payment of , or security for , the substi-tuted attorney’s fee s and expenses, or upon such other terms as may be just. The client shall be notified in advance of the proposed sub-stitution and shall consent in writing to the substitution. The written consent shall be filed with the court.(3) By filing with the court and serving upon all parties a notice of appearance as counsel for a party that has already appeared in a proceeding pro se or as co-counsel for a party that has already appeared in a proceeding by non-withdrawing counsel.(i) Withdrawal of Attorney. An attorney shall not be permitted to withdraw from an action unless the withdrawal is approved by the court. The attorney shall file a motion for that purpose stating the reasons for withdrawal and the client’s address. A copy of the motion shall be served on the client and adverse parties. The motion shall be set for hearing and notice of hearing shall be served on the client and adverse parties. Termination of Appearance of Attorney. The appearance of an attorney for a party in a proceeding shall terminate only in one of the following ways:(1) Withdrawal of Attorney. By order of court, where the proceeding is continuing, upon motion and hearing, on notice to all parties and the client, such motion setting forth the reasons for withdrawal and the client’s last known address. (2) Substitution of Attorney. By order of court, under the procedure set forth in subdivision (h)(2) of this rule. (3) Termination of Proceeding. Automatically, without order of court, upon the termination of a proceeding, whether by final order of dismissal, by final adjudication, or otherwise, and following the expiration of any applicable time for appeal, where no appeal is taken.(j) Addition of Attorneys. After a proceeding has been filed in a court, additional attorneys may appear without securing permission of the court. All addi-tional attorneys so appearing shall file a notice of appearance with the court and shall serve a copy of the notice of appearance on all parties in the proceeding.( k j ) Law Student Participation. Eligible law students shall be permitted to participate as provided under the conditions of chapter 11 of the Rules Regu-lating The Florida Bar as amended from time to time.( l k ) Attorney as Agent of Client. In all matters concerning the prosecution or defense of any pro-ceeding in the court, the attorney of record shall be the agent of the client, and any notice by or to the attorney or act by the attorney in the proceeding shallbe accepted as the act of or notice to the client.Annual Bar rules proposals ( 1) Statements About Legal Services. [no change] Bar examiners openings availableLawyer applicants are being sought to fill two vacancies on the Florida Board of Bar Examiners. The Board of Governors will be selecting six nominees for two lawyer vacancies at its May 30 meeting. The nominations will then be forwarded to the Supreme Court to fill the five-year terms commencing November 1 and expiring on October 31, 2008.Attorney members must have been a member of The Florida Bar for at least five years. They must be practicing lawyers with scholarly attainments and have an affirmative interest in legal education and requirements for admission to the Bar. Appointment or election to the bench at any level of the court system will disqualify any applicant. Law professors or trustees are ineligible.Board members of the Bar Examiners must be able to attend approximately 10 meetings a year in various Florida locations. Members work 300 or more hours per year on Board business depending on committee assignments. Actual travel expenses connected with the meetings and examinations are reimbursed.Statewide Nominating Commission for Compensation Claims Judges: Three attorneys from the territorial jurisdiction of the First, Third, and Fifth state appellate districts to serve four-year terms commencing July 1.All applicants must be members of the Bar who are engaged in the practice of law. No attorney who appears before any judge of compensation claims more than four times a year is eligible to serve on the Commission, pursuant to Section 440.45(2)(b), F.S. Commissioners are also not eligible for state judicial vacancies filled by the JNC on which they sit for two years following the expiration of their term. Commissioners are subject to Florida financial disclosure laws. Meetings and deliberations are open to the public.Persons interested in applying for these vacancies may download the application from the Bar’s Web site, www.flabar.org, or should contact The Florida Bar at (850) 561-5600, ext. 6802, to obtain the proper application form. Applications may also be obtained by writing the Executive Director John F. Harkness, Jr., The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee, 32399-2300.Completed applications must be received no later than the close of business Friday, April 11, 2003. Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of the required application. The Board of Governors will review all applications and may request telephone or personal interviews.17th Circuit JNC seeks applicantsThe 17th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission is now accepting applications to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Circuit Judge Patricia W. Cocalis, effective April 30.Applicants must be registered voters, residents of the 17th Circuit, and have been members of the Bar for at least five years.Applications and instructions are available on The Florida Bar Web site at www.flabar.org or by contacting William S. Spencer, JNC Chair, 500 East Broward Blvd., Suite 1400, Ft. Lauderdale 33394-3076, telephone (954) 468-1399; fax: (954) 523-1722.An original and nine copies of the completed applications (with photographs) must be received at the Spencer’s address no later than 5 p.m. March 6.The JNC is also accepting applications for a previously noticed 17th Circuit court judicial position established by the 2002 legislature. Applications received for the vacancy created by Judge Cocalis’ retirement will be considered for both vacant positions.The deadline date for submission of applications previously noticed (January 2003) for the 17th Circuit court judicial position established by the 2002 legislature, has been extended to March 6. Applicants who have applied for that position need not reapply for the vacancy created by Judge Cocalis’ retirement. All applications will be considered for both positions.Federal JNC seeks judicial applicantsApplications are now being accepted to fill the position of United States District Court judge for the Northern District of Florida (Pensacola Division).Applications are available from the Roberto Martinez, Commission Chair, 255 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables 33134, telephone number (305) 476-7430, e-mail address [email protected] completed application must be mailed to the commission’s chair and all its members by March 15.Wakefield petitions for reinstatementPursuant to Rule 3-7.10, Stanley Craig Wakefield has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for Bar reinstatement.Wakefield was suspended from practice of law for six months, effective February 18, 2002, for various trust account violations and for failing to properly supervise his nonlawyer staff.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Wakefield’s fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact Kenneth H. P. Bryk, Bar Counsel, The Florida Bar, 1200 Edgewater Drive, Orlando 32804-6314, telephone (407) 425-5424.Bar seeks JNC commissioners The Board of Governors of The Florida Bar hereby gives notice of filing with the Supreme Court of Florida, on or about April 1, 2003, a petition to amend the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.The full text of the proposed amendments is printed below. Some are substantive revisions; others are merely editorial refinements. These items will constitute the Bar’s annual filing of virtually all rules changes favorably recommended by the Board since May 2001 but held for this consolidated submission. A copy of the final pleading may be requested by contacting the Office of the General Counsel, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2300 or calling 850/561-5600, Extension 5751.Members who desire to comment on these proposed amendments may do so within 30 days of the filing of the Bar’s petition. Comments should be filed directly with the clerk of the Supreme Court of Florida, and a copy must be served on the executive director of The Florida Bar.Rule 1-21.1, Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, governs these proceedings.RULES REGULATING THE FLORIDA BARCHAPTER 1. GENERAL***1-3. MEMBERSHIP***RULE 1-3.6 DELINQUENT MEMBERSAny person now or hereafter licensed to practice law in Florida who fails to pay membership fees , or fails to comply with continuing legal education or basic skills course requirements , or is delinquent in the payment of costs assessed or restitution imposed in diversion cases or disciplinary proceedings brought under these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar shall be deemed a delinquent member. While occupying the status of a delinquent member, no person shall engage in the practice of law in Florida nor be entitled to any privileges and benefits accorded to members of The Florida Bar in good standing.***RULE 1-3.8 RIGHT TO INVENTORY(a) Appointment; Grounds; Authority. Whenever an attorney is suspended, disbarred, becomes a delinquent member, abandons a practice, disappears, or dies, or suffers an involuntary leave of absence due to military service, catastrophic illness, or injury, and no partner, personal representative, or other responsible party capable of conducting the attorney’s affairs is known to exist, the appropriate circuit court, upon proper proof of the fact, may appoint an attorney or attorneys to inventory the files of the subject attorney (hereinafter referred to as “the subject attorney”) and to take such action as seems indicated to protect the interests of clients of the subject attorney.(b) Maintenance of Attorney-Client Confidences. [no change](c) Status and Purpose of Inventory Attorney. [no change](d) Rules of Procedure. [no change]***1-7. MEMBERSHIP FEES AND FISCAL CONTROL***RULE 1-7.3 MEMBERSHIP FEES(a) Membership Fees Requirement. On or before July 1 of each year, every member of The Florida Bar, except those members who have retired, resigned, been disbarred, or been classified as inactive members pursuant to rule 3-7.13, shall pay annual membership fees to The Florida Bar in the amount set by the budget, provided that the board of governors shall not fix the membership fees at more than $265 per annum. At the time of the payment of membership fees every member of The Florida Bar shall file with the executive director a statement setting forth any information that may be required by the board of governors.Membership fees tendered to The Florida Bar shall not be accepted from any member who : is delinquent in the payment of has not paid costs or restitution imposed against the member in a diversion case or disciplinary proceeding . Costs shall be deemed delinquent unless paid within 30 days after the disciplinary decision becomes final unless such time is extended by the board of governors for good cause shown ; or has not made . R r estitution shall be deemed delinquent unless accomplished in the manner and by the date provided in the disciplinary order or agreement. A member who has not paid diversion or disciplinary costs or made restitution as required by this subdivision shall be deemed a delinquent member as defined elsewhere in these rules.(b) Prorated Membership Fees. [no change](c) Installment Payment of Membership Fees. [no change](d) Election of Inactive Membership. [no change](e) Late Payment of Membership Fees. [no change]***CHAPTER 2. BYLAWS OF THE FLORIDA BAR***2-9. POLICIES AND RULES***BYLAW 2-9.4 ETHICS(a) Rules of Procedure. [no change](b) Amendment. [no change](c) Waiver. [no change](d) Confidentiality. [no change] (e) Disqualification as Attorney Due to Conflict. (1) Members of the Professional Ethics Committee (PEC), Members of the Board of Governors, and Employees of The Florida Bar. No member of the PEC, the board of governors, or employee of The Florida Bar shall represent a party other than The Florida Bar in proceedings for the issuance of opinions on professional ethics authorized under these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.(2) Former Members of the PEC, Former Board Members, and Former Employees. No former member of the PEC, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar shall represent any party other than in proceedings for the issuance of opinions on professional ethics authorized under these rules if personally involved to any degree in the matter while a member of the PEC, a member of the board of governors, or an employee of The Florida Bar.A former member of the PEC, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar who did not participate personally in any way in the matter or any related matter in which the attorney seeks to be a representative, and who did not serve in a supervisory capacity over such matter, shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar in proceedings for the issuance of opinions on professional ethics authorized under these rules for 1 year after such service without the express consent of the board.(3) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of PEC Members or Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. Members of the firms of a board of governors member or PEC member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in proceedings for the issuance of opinions on professional ethics authorized under these rules without the express consent of the board.(4) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Former PEC Members or Former Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. Attorneys in the firms of a former board of governors member or former PEC member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in proceedings for the issuance of opinions on professional ethics authorized under these rules for 1 year after the former member’s service without the express consent of the board.***CHAPTER 3 PREAMBLE***3-5 TYPES OF DISCIPLINERULE 3-5.1 GENERALLYA judgment entered, finding a member of The Florida Bar guilty of misconduct, shall include one or more of the following disciplinary measures:(a) Admonishments. [no change](b) Minor Misconduct. [no change](c) Probation. [no change](d) Public Reprimand. [no change](e) Suspension. [no change](f) Disbarment. [no change](g) Notice to Clients. [no change](h) Forfeiture of Fees. An order of the Supreme Court of Florida or a report of minor misconduct adjudicating a respondent guilty of entering into, charging, or collecting a fee prohibited by the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar may order the respondent to forfeit the fee or any part thereof. In the case of a clearly excessive fee, the excessive amount of the fee may be ordered returned to the client, and a fee otherwise prohibited by the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar may be ordered forfeited to The Florida Bar Clients’ Security Fund and disbursed in accordance with its rules and regulations.Competent evidence other than that contained in a written fee contract may be used in proceedings conducted under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar to determine a lawyer’s compliance with those rules. However, any finding based on such evidence shall not be admissible in civil proceedings concerning the validity or amount of the legal fees that were at issue in the disciplinary proceeding.(i) Restitution. [no change](j) Disciplinary Resignation. [no change]***RULE 3-5.3 DIVERSION OF DISCIPLINARY CASES TO PRACTICE AND PROFESSIONALISM ENHANCEMENT PROGRAMS(a) Authority of Board. [no change](b) Types of Disciplinary Cases Eligible for Diversion. [no change](c) Limitation on Diversion. [no change](d) Approval of Diversion of Cases at Staff or Grievance Committee Level Investigations. The bar shall not offer a respondent the opportunity to divert a disciplinary case that is pending at staff or grievance committee level investigations to a practice and professionalism enhancement program unless staff counsel, the grievance committee chair, and the designated reviewer concur.(e) Contents of Diversion Recommendation. [no change](f) Service of Recommendation on and Review by Respondent. [no change](g) Effect of Rejection of Recommendation by Respondent. [no change](h) Diversion at Trial Level.(1) Agreement of the Parties. A referee may recommend diversion of a disciplinary case to a practice and professionalism enhancement program if the bar approves diversion as stated in subdivision (d) and the respondent agrees. Under these circumstances a conditional plea, as otherwise authorized by these rules, may be submitted to the referee for review and approval. The procedures for approval of conditional pleas provided elsewhere in these rules shall apply to diversion at the trial level.(2) After Submission of Evidence. [no change](3) Costs of Practice and Professionalism Enhancement Program. [no change](4) Appeal of Diversion Recommendation. [no change](5) Authority of Referee to Refer a Matter to a Practice and Professionalism Enhancement Program. [no change](i) Effect of Diversion. [no change](j) Effect of Completion of the Practice and Professionalism Enhancement Program. [no change](k) Effect of Failure to Complete the Practice and Professionalism Enhancement Program. [no change]( l ) Costs of Practice and Professionalism Enhancement Programs. [no change]3-6. EMPLOYMENT OF CERTAIN ATTORNEYS OR FORMER ATTORNEYSRULE 3-6.1 GENERALLYAn authorized business entity (as defined elsewhere in these rules) may employ individuals subject to this rule to perform such services only as may ethically be performed by other lay persons employed by authorized business entities.(a) Individuals Subject to This Rule. [no change](b) Definition of Employment. [no change](c) Employment by Former Subordinates. An individual subject to this rule may not, for a period of 3 years from the entry of the order pursuant to which the suspension, disciplinary resignation, or disbarment became effective, be employed by or work under the supervision of another attorney who was supervised by the individual at the time of or subsequent to the acts giving rise to the order.( c d ) Notice of Employment. [no further change]( d e ) Client Contact. [no further change] ( e f ) Reports by Employee andEmployer. [no further change]3-7 PROCEDURESRULE 3-7.1 CONFIDENTIALITY(a) Scope of Confidentiality. All matters including files, preliminary investigation reports, interoffice memoranda, records of investigations, and the records in trials and other proceedings under these rules, except those disciplinary matters conducted in circuit courts, are property of The Florida Bar. All of those matters shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed except as provided in these rules herein. When disclosure is permitted under these rules, it shall be limited to information concerning the status of the proceedings and any information that is part of the public record as defined in these rules.Unless otherwise ordered by this court or the referee in proceedings under this rule, nothing in these rules shall prohibit the complainant, respondent, or any witness from disclosing the existence of proceedings under these rules, or from disclosing any documents or correspondence served on or provided to those persons.(1) Pending Investigations . Disciplinary matters pending at the initial investigatory and grievance committee levels shall be treated as confidential by The Florida Bar, except as provided in rules 3-7.1(e) & (k).(2) Minor Misconduct Cases . Any case in which a finding of minor misconduct has been entered by action of the grievance committee or board shall be public information.(3) Probable Cause Cases . Any disciplinary case in which a finding of probable cause for further disciplinary proceedings has been entered shall be public information. For purposes of this subdivision a finding of probable cause shall be deemed to have been made in those cases authorized by rule 3-3.2(a), for the filing of a formal complaint without the prior necessity of a finding of probable cause.(4) No Probable Cause Cases . Any disciplinary case that has been concluded by a finding of no probable cause for further disciplinary proceedings shall be public information.(5) Diversion or Referral to Grievance Mediation Program. Any disciplinary case that has been concluded by diversion to a practice and professionalism enhancement program or by referral to the grievance mediation program shall be public information upon the entry of such a recommendation.(6) Contempt Cases. Contempt proceedings authorized elsewhere in these rules shall be public information even though the underlying disciplinary matter is confidential as defined in these rules.(7) Incapacity Not Involving Misconduct. Proceedings for placement on the inactive list for incapacity not involving misconduct shall be public information upon the filing of the petition with the Supreme Court of Florida.(8) Petition for Emergency Suspension or Probation. Proceedings seeking a petition for emergency suspension or probation shall be public information.(9) Proceedings on Determination or Adjudication of Guilt of Criminal Misconduct. Proceedings on determination or adjudication of guilt of criminal misconduct, as provided elsewhere in these rules, shall be public information.(10) Professional Misconduct in Foreign Jurisdiction. Proceedings based on disciplinary sanctions entered by a foreign court or other authorized disciplinary agency, as provided elsewhere in these rules, shall be public information.(11) Reinstatement Proceedings. Reinstatement proceedings, as provided elsewhere in these rules, shall be public information.(12) Disciplinary Resignations. Proceedings involving petitions for disciplinary resignation, as provided elsewhere in these rules, shall be public information.(b) Public Record. [no change](c) Circuit Court Proceedings. Proceedings under rule 3-3.5 shall be public information. Contempt proceedings authorized elsewhere in these rules shall be public information even though the underlying disciplinary matter is confidential as defined in these rules.(d) Limitations on Disclosure. [no change](e) Disclosure of Information . Unless otherwise ordered by this court or the referee in proceedings under this rule, nothing in these rules shall prohibit the complainant, respondent, or any witness from disclosing the existence of proceedings under these rules or from disclosing any documents or correspondence served on or provided to those persons.( f e ) Response to Inquiry. Authorized r R epresentatives of The Florida Bar authorized by the board of governors shall respond to specific inquiries concerning matters that are in the public domain, but otherwise confidential under the rules, by acknowledging the status of the proceedings.( g f ) Notice to Law Firms. [no further change](h) Pending Investigations . Disciplinary matters pending at the initial investigatory and grievance committee levels shall be treated as confidential by The Florida Bar, except as provided in rule 3-7.1(f).(j) Probable Cause Cases . Any disciplinary case in which a finding of probable cause for further disciplinary proceedings has been entered shall be public information. For purposes of this subdivision a finding of probable cause shall be deemed to have been made in those cases authorized by rule 3-3.2(a), for the filing of a formal complaint without the prior necessity of a finding of probable cause.(k) No Probable Cause Cases . Any disciplinary case that has been concluded by a finding of no probable cause for further disciplinary proceedings shall become public information.( l g ) Production of Disciplinary Records Pursuant to Subpoena. [no further change]( m h ) Notice to Judges. [no further change]( n i ) Evidence of Crime. [no further change]( o j ) Chemical Dependency and Psychological Treatment. [no further change]( p k ) Response to False or Misleading Statements. [no further change]( q l ) Disclosure by Waiver of Respondent. [no further change]***RULE 3-7.5 PROCEDURES BEFORE THE BOARD OF GOVERNORS(a) Review of Grievance Committee Matters .(1) The disciplinary review committee shall review those grievance committee matters referred to it by a designated reviewer. The committee shall make a report to the board and unless overruled by the board the report shall be final.(2) Whenever a grievance matter is referred to the disciplinary review committee by the designated reviewer, the disciplinary review committee shall promptly review the actions of the grievance committee and the recommendations of the designated reviewer and make a report to the board providing for the issuance of:(A) an admonishment, which the respondent may thereafter reject in the same manner as an admonishment recommended by a grievance committee;(B) confirmation of the formal complaint;(C) reversal of the grievance committee and a finding of no probable cause; or(D) return of the matter to the grievance committee for further proceedings.(3) The disciplinary review committee report shall be final unless overruled by the board. If the board shall find no probable cause, bar counsel shall notify the respondent, the grievance committee, and the complaining witness.(a) Review by the Designated Reviewer. Notice of grievance committee action recommending either diversion to a practice and professionalism enhancement program or finding either no probable cause, no probable cause with a letter of advice, minor misconduct, or probable cause shall be given to the designated reviewer for review. Upon review of the grievance committee action, the designated reviewer may request the grievance committee to reconsider its action or may refer the grievance committee action to the board of governors for its review. The designated reviewer may request grievance committee reconsideration or refer the matter to the disciplinary review committee of the board of governors within 30 days of notice of grievance committee action. The request for a grievance committee reconsideration or referral to the disciplinary review committee shall be in writing. If the designated reviewer fails to make the request for reconsideration or referral within the time prescribed, the grievance committee action shall become final. Recommendations of the designated reviewer may include:(1) referral of the matter to the grievance mediation program; (2) referral of the matter to the fee arbitration program;(3) closure of the disciplinary file by diversion to a component of the practice and professionalism enhancement program;(4) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause;(5) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause with a letter of advice; (6) a finding of minor misconduct; or (7) a finding of probable cause that further disciplinary proceedings are warranted.(b) Review by the Designated Reviewer . A designated reviewer may review the actions of a grievance committee. In order to allow for review by the designated reviewer, notice of grievance committee action finding no probable cause, no probable cause with a letter of advice, minor misconduct, or probable cause shall be given to the designated reviewer. If the designated reviewer disagrees with the grievance committee action, the designated reviewer shall make a report and recommendation to the disciplinary review committee. The designated reviewer shall make the report and recommendation within 21 days following the mailing date of the notice of grievance committee action; otherwise the grievance committee action shall become final.(b) Review of Grievance Committee Matters . The disciplinary review committee shall review those grievance committee matters referred to it by a designated reviewer and shall make a report to the board. The disciplinary review committee may confirm, reject, or amend the recommendation of the designated reviewer in whole or in part. The report of the disciplinary review committee shall be final unless overruled by the board. Recommendations of the disciplinary review committee may include:(1) referral of the matter to the grievance mediation program; (2) referral of the matter to the fee arbitration program;(3) closure of the disciplinary file by diversion to a component of the practice and professionalism enhancement program;(4) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause;(5) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause with a letter of advice; (6) a finding of minor misconduct; or(7) a finding of probable cause that further disciplinary proceedings are warranted.(c) Finding of Probable Cause Board Action on Review of Designated Reviewer Recommendations. The board, on the basis of the report of any regular or special grievance committee, may by majority vote find probable cause and direct the filing of a formal complaint against an attorney. On review of a report and recommendation of the disciplinary review committee, the board of governors may confirm, reject, or amend the recommendation in whole or in part. Action by the board may include:(1) referral of the matter to the grievance mediation program; (2) referral of the matter to the fee arbitration program;(3) closure of the disciplinary file by diversion to a component of the practice and professionalism enhancement program;(4) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause;(5) closure of the disciplinary file by the entry of a finding of no probable cause with a letter of advice;(6) a finding of minor misconduct; or (7) a finding of probable cause that further disciplinary proceedings are warranted.(d) Notice of Board Action. Bar counsel shall give notice of board action to the respondent, complainant, and grievance committee.( d e ) Finding of No Probable Cause. A finding of no probable cause by the board shall be final and no further proceedings shall be had in the matter by The Florida Bar.( e f ) Control of Proceedings. Bar counsel, however appointed, at all times shall be subject to the direction of the board at all times. The board, I in the exercise of its discretion as the governing body of The Florida Bar, the board prior to the receipt of evidence by the referee has the power to terminate disciplinary proceedings before a referee prior to the receipt of evidence by the referee, whether such proceedings have been instituted upon a finding of probable cause by the board or a grievance committee.( f g ) Filing Service on Board of Governors. All matters to be filed with or served upon the board shall be addressed to the board of governors and filed with the executive director. The executive director shall be the custodian of the official records of The Florida Bar.RULE 3-7.6 PROCEDURES BEFORE A REFEREE(a) Referees. [no change](b) Trial by Referee. [no change](c) Pretrial Conference. Within 60 days of the order assigning the case to the referee, the referee shall conduct a pretrial conference. The purpose of the conference is to set a schedule for the proceedings, including discovery deadlines and a final hearing date. The referee shall enter a written order in the proceedings reflecting the schedule determined at the conference.( c d ) Venue. [no further change]( d e ) Style of Proceedings. [no further change]( e f ) Nature of Proceedings. [no further change]( f g ) Bar Counsel. [no further change]( g h ) Pleadings. [no further change]( h i ) Notice of Final Hearing. [no further change]( i j ) The Respondent. [no further change]( j k ) Complaining Witness. [no further change]( k l ) Referee’s Report. [no further change]( l m ) The Record. [no further change]( m n ) Plea of Guilty by Respondent. [no further change]( n o ) Cost of Review or Reproduction. [no further change]( o p ) Costs.(1) Taxable Costs. Taxable costs of the proceedings shall include only:(A) investigative costs, including travel and out-of-pocket expenses;(B) court reporters’ fees;(C) copy costs;(D) telephone charges;(E) fees for translation services;(F) witness expenses, including travel and out-of-pocket expenses;(G) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of the referee;(H) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of counsel in the proceedings, including of the respondent if acting as counsel; and(I) an administrative fee in the amount of $750 when costs are assessed in favor of the bar as set forth elsewhere in these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.(2) Discretion of Referee. The referee shall have discretion to award costs and, absent an abuse of discretion, the referee’s award shall not be reversed.(3) Assessment of Bar Costs. When the bar is successful, in whole or in part, the referee may assess the bar’s costs against the respondent unless it is shown that the costs of the bar were unnecessary, excessive, or improperly authenticated.(4) Assessment of Respondent’s Costs. When the bar is unsuccessful in the prosecution of a particular matter, the referee may assess the respondent’s costs against the bar in the event that there was no justiciable issue of either law or fact raised by the bar.Court CommentA comprehensive referee’s report under subdivision ( k l ) is beneficial to a reviewing court so that the court need not make assumptions about the referee’s intent or return the report to the referee for clarification. The referee’s report should list and address each issue in the case and cite to available authority for the referee’s recommendations concerning guilt and discipline.***RULE 3-7.9 CONSENT JUDGMENT(a) Before Formal Complaint is Filed. If before a formal complaint is filed a respondent states a desire to plead guilty to a grievance committee report that finds probable cause and recommends further disciplinary proceedings, then staff counsel shall consult established board guidelines for discipline , with the approval of and confer with the designated board reviewer and concurrence of the board of governors, may consult established board guidelines for discipline, and advise the respondent of the discipline that will be recommended to the Supreme Court of Florida if a written plea of guilty is entered. If staff counsel or the designated reviewer rejects the proposed consent judgment, the matter shall not be referred to the board of governors. If staff counsel and the designated reviewer approve the proposed consent judgment, the respondent shall be advised that staff counsel and the designated reviewer will recommend approval of the respondent’s written plea, and the matter shall be placed on the agenda of the board of governors for its review. If the board of governors concurs in the consent judgment, bar counsel shall notify the respondent and file all necessary pleadings to secure approval of the plea. If the board of governors or designated reviewer rejects a proposed consent judgment is rejected, bar counsel shall prepare and file a complaint as provided elsewhere in these rules.(b) After Filing of Formal Complaint. If a respondent states a desire to plead guilty to a formal complaint that has been filed, then bar staff counsel shall consult established board guidelines for discipline and confer , with the approval of the designated board reviewer , may consult established board guidelines for discipline and advise the respondent of the discipline the bar will recommend to the referee if a written plea of guilty is entered. If staff counsel or the designated reviewer rejects the proposed consent judgment, the plea shall not be filed with the referee. If staff counsel and the designated reviewer approve the proposed consent judgment, the respondent shall be advised that staff counsel and the designated reviewer will recommend approval of the respondent’s written plea and the consent judgment shall be filed with the referee. If the referee accepts the consent judgment, the referee shall enter a report and file same with the court as provided elsewhere in these rules. If the referee rejects the consent judgment, the matter shall proceed as provided in this chapter.(c) Approval of Consent Judgments. Acceptance of any proposed consent judgment more severe than an admonishment shall be conditioned on final approval by the Supreme Court of Florida, and the court’s order will recite the disciplinary charges against the respondent.(d) Content of Conditional Pleas. [no change](e) Authority of Staff Counsel. Staff counsel has no authority to commit the board bar on any consent judgment not previously approved by the board as provided in this rule. All consent judgments tentatively approved by staff counsel without prior approval of the board shall be subject to board approval. In negotiating consent judgments with a respondent or in recommending acceptance, rejection, or offer of a tendered consent judgment, the grievance committee, staff counsel , and designated reviewer shall consider and express a recommendation on whether the consent judgment shall include revocation of certification if held by the attorney and restrictions to be placed on recertification in such areas. When certification revocation is agreed to in a consent judgment, the revocation and any conditions on recertification will be reported to the legal specialization and education director for recording purposes.RULE 3-7.10 REINSTATEMENT AND READMISSION PROCEDURES(a) Reinstatement; Applicability. [no change](b) Petitions; Form and Contents. [no change](c) Deposit for Cost. [no change](d) Reference of Petition For Hearing. [no change](e) Bar Counsel. [no change](f) Determination of Fitness by Referee Hearing. [no change](g) Hearing; Notice; Evidence. [no change](h) Prompt Hearing; Report. [no change](i) Review. [no change](j) Recommendation of Referee and Judgment of the Court. [no change](k) Successive Petitions. [no change]( l ) Petitions for Reinstatement to Membership in Good Standing. [no change] (m) Costs.(1) Taxable Costs. Taxable costs of the proceedings shall include only:(A) investigative costs, including travel and out-of-pocket expenses;(B) court reporters’ fees;(C) copy costs;(D) telephone charges;(E) fees for translation services;(F) witness expenses, including travel and out-of-pocket expenses;(G) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of the referee;(H) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of counsel in the proceedings, including the petitioner if acting as counsel; and(I) an administrative fee in the amount of $750 when costs are assessed in favor of the bar as set forth elsewhere in these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.(2) Discretion of Referee. The referee shall have discretion to award costs and absent an abuse of discretion the referee’s award shall not be reversed.(3) Assessment of Bar Costs. The costs incurred by the bar in any reinstatement case may be assessed against the petitioner unless it is shown that the costs were unnecessary, excessive, or improperly authenticated.(4) Assessment of Petitioner’s Costs. The referee may assess the petitioner’s costs against the bar in the event that there was no justiciable issue of either law or fact raised by the bar unless it is shown that the costs were unnecessary, excessive, or improperly authenticated.(n) Readmission; Applicability. [no change]RULE 3-7.11 GENERAL RULE OF PROCEDURE(a) Time is Directory. [no change](b) Process. Every member of The Florida Bar is charged with notifying The Florida Bar of a change of mailing address or military status. Mailing of registered or certified papers or notices prescribed in these rules to the last mailing address of an attorney as shown by the official records in the office of the executive director of The Florida Bar shall be sufficient notice and service unless this court shall direct otherwise. Every attorney of another state who is permitted to practice for the purpose of a specific case before a court of record of this state may be served by registered or certified mail addressed to said attorney in care of the Florida attorney who was associated or appeared with the attorney in the specific case for which the out-of-state attorney was permitted to practice or addressed to said attorney at any address listed by the attorney in the pleadings in such case.Provided, however, when a person is represented by counsel service of process and notices shall be directed to counsel.(c) Notice in Lieu of Process. Every member of The Florida Bar is within the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Florida and its agencies under these rules, and service of process is not required to obtain jurisdiction over respondents in disciplinary proceedings; but due process requires the giving of reasonable notice and such shall be effective by the service of the complaint upon the respondent by mailing a copy thereof by registered or certified mail return receipt requested to the last-known address of the respondent according to the records of The Florida Bar or such later address as may be known to the person effecting the service.When the respondent is represented by counsel in the matter, due process is satisfied by the service of the complaint upon the respondent’s counsel by mailing a copy thereof by registered or certified mail return receipt requested to the last known address of the respondent’s counsel according to the records of The Florida Bar or such later address as may be known to the person effecting the service.(d) Subpoenas. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence other than before a circuit court shall be issued as follows:(1) Referees. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and production of documentary evidence before a referee shall be issued by the referee and shall be served in the manner provided by law for the service of process or by an investigator employed by The Florida Bar.(2) Grievance Committees. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence shall be issued by the chair or vice-chair of a grievance committee in pursuance of an investigation authorized by the committee. Such subpoenas may be served by any member of such committee, by an investigator employed by The Florida Bar, or in the manner provided by law for the service of process.(3) Bar Counsel Investigations. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence before bar counsel when same is conducting an initial investigation shall be issued by the chair or vice chair of a grievance committee to which the matter will be assigned, if appropriate. Such subpoenas may be served by an investigator employed by The Florida Bar or in the manner provided by law for the service of process.(4) After Grievance Committee Action, But Before Appointment of Referee. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence before bar counsel when same is conducting further investigation after action by a grievance committee, but before appointment of a referee, shall be issued by the chair or vice chair of the grievance committee to which the matter was assigned. Such subpoenas may be served by an investigator employed by The Florida Bar or in the manner provided by law for the service of process.(5) Board of Governors. Subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence before the board of governors shall be issued by the executive director and shall be served by an investigator employed by The Florida Bar or in the manner provided by law for the service of process.(6) Confidential Proceedings. If the proceeding is confidential, a subpoena shall not name the respondent but shall style the proceeding as “Confidential Proceeding by The Florida Bar under the Rules of Discipline.”(7) Contempt. Any persons who without adequate excuse fail to obey such a subpoena served upon them may be cited for contempt of this court in the manner provided by this rule.(8) Assistance to Other Lawyer Disciplinary Jurisdictions. Upon receipt of a subpoena certified to be duly issued under the rules or laws of another lawyer disciplinary jurisdiction, the executive director may issue a subpoena directing a person domiciled or found within the state of Florida to give testimony and/or produce documents or other things for use in the other lawyer disciplinary proceedings as directed in the subpoena of the other jurisdiction. The practice and procedure applicable to subpoenas issued under this subdivision shall be that of the other jurisdiction, except that:(A) the testimony or production shall be only in the county wherein the person resides or is employed, or as otherwise fixed by the executive director for good cause shown; and(B) compliance with any subpoena issued pursuant to this subdivision and contempt for failure in this respect shall be sought as elsewhere provided in these rules.(e) Oath of Witness. [no change](f) Contempt. If an agency other than a circuit court shall find that a person is in contempt under these rules, such person shall be cited for contempt in the following manner, except that a respondent in a disciplinary proceeding may be cited for contempt by petition for an order to show cause contempt filed and heard in the Supreme Court of Florida or in the circuit court :(1) Petition for Order to Show Cause Contempt. The agency shall direct bar counsel, or chair of the agency if there is no bar counsel, serving in the matter in which the contempt occurs, to present to the circuit court having jurisdiction, a petition for the issuance of an order to show cause why the person so accused should not be held to hold the person in contempt of this court.(2) Appellate Review. A judgment in such contempt proceedings may be appealed by either party in the manner provided in the rule on appellate review of disciplinary proceedings under these rules, except that a copy of the petition for review shall not be filed with the clerk of the circuit court, and the record shall be forwarded to the Supreme Court of Florida by the judge or the agency possessing the same.(g) Testimony of Witnesses; Contempt. [no change](h) Court Reporters. [no change]( i ) Disqualification as Trier and Attorney for Respondent Due to Conflict.(1) Employees, Grievance Committee Members, and Members of the Board of Governors , and Employees of The Florida Bar. No employee of The Florida Bar, no grievance committee member, and no member of the board of governors , or employee of The Florida Bar shall represent a party other than The Florida Bar in any of the following specific matters: disciplinary proceedings authorized under these rules.(A) certification appeals;(B) appeals to or from the committee on professional ethics; and(C) cases being investigated or litigated involving the unlicensed practice of law.(2) Former Grievance Committee Members , Former Board Members, or and Former Employees. No former member of a grievance committee, former member of the board of governors , or former employee of The Florida Bar shall represent any party other than The Florida Bar in such matters disciplinary proceedings authorized under these rules if personally involved to any degree in the matter while a member of the grievance committee, the board of governors , or while an employee of The Florida Bar.A former member of the board of governors, former member of any grievance committee, or former employee of The Florida Bar who did not participate personally in any way in the investigation or prosecution of the matter or in any related matter in which the attorney seeks to be a representative, and who did not serve in a supervisory capacity over such investigation or prosecution, shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar for 1 year after such service without the express consent of the board.(3) Attorneys Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Grievance Committee Members or Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. An attorney Members of the firms of a grievance committee member or board member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in disciplinary proceedings provided for in authorized under these disciplinary rules under any of the following circumstances: without the express consent of the board.(A) If the attorney is a member or former member of the board of governors, member or former member of any grievance committee, or employee or former employee of The Florida Bar and while in such capacity participated personally in any way in the investigation or prosecution of the matter or any related matter in which the attorney seeks to be a representative or if the attorney served in a supervisory capacity over such investigation or prosecution.(B) A partner, associate, employer, or employee of an attorney prohibited from representation by subdivision (3)(A) shall likewise be prohibited from representing any such party.(C) A member of the board shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar while serving as a member of the board of governors or for one year thereafter.(D) An employee of The Florida Bar shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar while an employee of The Florida Bar and shall not thereafter represent such party for a period of 1 year without the express consent of the board.(E) A member of a grievance committee shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar while a member of a grievance committee and shall not thereafter represent such party for a period of 1 year without the express consent of the board.(F) A partner, associate, employer, or employee of an attorney prohibited from representation by subdivisions (3)(C), (3)(D), and (3)(E) of this rule shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar without the express consent of the board of governors.(4) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Former Grievance Committee Members or Former Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. Attorneys in the firms of a former board member or former grievance committee member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in disciplinary proceedings authorized under these rules for 1 year after the former member’s service without the express consent of the board.(j) Administrative Fees. Where otherwise authorized in these rules, administrative fees shall be charged in the amount of:(A) $1,000.00 for cases that are resolved without the appointment of a judicial referee; (B) $1,500.00 for cases that are resolved after a judicial referee is appointed, but before a final hearing is held; (C) $2,000.00 for cases in which the parties reach an agreement after a final hearing is held, but before a report of referee is entered; (D) $2,500.00 for cases in which a report of referee is entered without an agreement of the parties and no appeal is taken; or (E) $5,000.00 for cases that are resolved after an appeal is taken.***3-8 FLORIDA BAR GRIEVANCE MEDIATION PROGRAMRULE 3-8.1 FLORIDA BAR GRIEVANCE MEDIATION PROGRAM(a) Establishment . The Florida Bar Grievance Mediation Program (hereinafter “mediation program”) is hereby established as a means to empower complainants and respondents to resolve disputes without the involvement of formal disciplinary processes.(b) Authority of Board of Governors . The board of governors may appoint a standing committee to administer the mediation program and may adopt policies for implementation of the mediation program.(c) Certified Mediation Program Mediators . (1) Certification. Persons wishing to become mediation program mediators (hereinafter “program mediators”) shall apply to the committee for its review and certification. The committee shall promulgate standards and forms for certification hereunder. Membership in The Florida Bar shall not be required for certification as a program mediator.(2) CLE Credit for Service. Program mediators shall be entitled to 2 hours of annual CLE credit in the area of ethics for service in the mediation program as provided in the policies adopted under this rule.(d) Criteria for Mediation . No disciplinary file may be referred to the mediation program unless the public interest is satisfied by the resolution of the private rights of the parties to the mediation. If any issue involved in a disciplinary file must remain for resolution within the disciplinary process, such file shall not be referred for mediation.The board may adopt policies to assist those making referrals under this rule.(e) Effect of Referral . Upon referral for mediation of the issues involved in a disciplinary file, the disciplinary file shall be closed without the entry of a sanction and shall remain closed unless:(1) the respondent fails to attend mediation;(2) the mediation fails to resolve the issues involved; or (3) the respondent fails to fully comply with the terms of a written mediation agreement.(f) Effect of Respondent’s Failure to Attend or Comply . It shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to attend an agreed-upon mediation conference without good cause. Likewise, it shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to fully comply with the terms of a written mediation agreement.(g) Effect of Complainant’s Failure to Attend . If a file referred for mediation is not fully resolved by reason of a complainant’s failure to attend, without good cause, the disciplinary file based thereon may remain closed.(h) Procedures .(1) Authority for Referral to Mediation.(A) Bar Counsel. Bar counsel, with the consent of the parties, may refer any file to the mediation program that meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule.(B) Grievance Committees. Grievance committees, with concurrence of bar counsel and consent of the parties, may refer any file to the mediation program that meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule.(C) Board of Governors. The board of governors, upon review of a file referred to it, as authorized elsewhere under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, may refer same to the mediation program if it meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule.(D) Referees. Referees, with concurrence of The Florida Bar, may refer any file to the mediation program that meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule. Concurrence of The Florida Bar requires agreement of bar counsel and the member of the board of governors designated to review the disciplinary matter at issue.(E) Supreme Court of Florida. The Supreme Court of Florida may order referral of any file to the mediation program that meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule.(2) Disqualification of Mediator. No person shall serve as a program mediator in any matter referred hereunder if such person would be disqualified from serving as a mediator under the criteria provided in the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators, and, in the case of program mediators who are also members of The Florida Bar, the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.(3) Report to The Florida Bar. At the conclusion of a mediation the program mediator shall report to the committee, limited to:(A) reference to the matter by identification of the disciplinary file to which it pertains;(B) reference to whether the matter settled without resort to a formal mediation conference;(C) whether a formal mediation conference was held and, if so, when;(D) the parties who attended and those who did not;(E) whether the mediation resulted in complete settlement, partial settlement, or impasse; and(F) in instances where disciplinary violations of a sort not proper for mediation are divulged or discovered, or a party to the mediation appears to the program mediator to be incompetent to participate in the mediation, a statement that the matter is no longer proper for mediation, without elaboration as to why.(i) Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators. The Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators shall apply to proceedings under this rule unless otherwise stated herein or in conflict with the provisions of this rule or the Rules of Professional Conduct.(j) Immunity . The members of the committee and program mediators, as well as staff of The Florida Bar assisting the committee or program mediators shall have immunity from civil liability for all acts within the course of their official duties.CHAPTER 4 RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT4-1 CLIENT LAWYER RELATIONSHIP***RULE 4-1.5 FEES AND COSTS FOR LEGAL SERVICES(a) Illegal, Prohibited, or Clearly Excessive Fees and Costs . An attorney shall not enter into an agreement for, charge, or collect an illegal, prohibited, or clearly excessive fee or cost, or a fee generated by employment that was obtained through advertising or solicitation not in compliance with the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar. A fee or cost is clearly excessive when:(1) after a review of the facts, a lawyer of ordinary prudence would be left with a definite and firm conviction that the fee or the cost exceeds a reasonable fee or cost for services provided to such a degree as to constitute clear overreaching or an unconscionable demand by the attorney; or(2) the fee or cost is sought or secured by the attorney by means of intentional misrepresentation or fraud upon the client, a nonclient party, or any court, as to either entitlement to, or amount of, the fee.Competent evidence other than that contained in a written fee contract may be used in proceedings conducted under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar to determine a lawyer’s compliance with those rules. However, any finding based on such evidence shall not be admissible in civil proceedings concerning the validity or amount of the legal fees that were at issue in the disciplinary proceeding.(b) Factors to Be Considered in Determining Reasonable Fee and Costs .(1) Factors to be considered as guides in determining a reasonable fee include:( 1 A ) the time and labor required, the novelty, complexity, and difficulty of the questions involved, and the skill requisite to perform the legal service properly;( 2 B ) the likelihood that the acceptance of the particular employment will preclude other employment by the lawyer;( 3 C ) the fee, or rate of fee, customarily charged in the locality for legal services of a comparable or similar nature;( 4 D ) the significance of, or amount involved in, the subject matter of the representation, the responsibility involved in the representation, and the results obtained;( 5 E ) the time limitations imposed by the client or by the circumstances and, as between attorney and client, any additional or special time demands or requests of the attorney by the client;( 6 F ) the nature and length of the professional relationship with the client;( 7 G ) the experience, reputation, diligence, and ability of the lawyer or lawyers performing the service and the skill, expertise, or efficiency of effort reflected in the actual providing of such services; and( 8 H ) whether the fee is fixed or contingent, and, if fixed as to amount or rate, then whether the client’s ability to pay rested to any significant degree on the outcome of the representation.(2) Factors to be considered as guides in determining reasonable costs include:(A) the nature and extent of the disclosure made to the client about the costs; (B) whether a specific agreement exists between the lawyer and client as to the costs a client is expected to pay and how a cost is calculated that is charged to a client; (C) the actual amount charged by third party providers of services to the attorney; (D) whether specific costs can be identified and allocated to an individual client or a reasonable basis exists to estimate the costs charged; (E) the reasonable charges for providing in-house service to a client if the cost is an in-house charge for services; All costs are subject to the above test of reasonableness. When the parties have a written contract in which the method is established for charging costs, the costs charged thereunder shall be presumed reasonable.(c) Consideration of All Factors. [no change](d) Enforceability of Fee Contracts. [no change](e) Duty to Communicate Basis or Rate of Fee or Costs to Client. When the lawyer has not regularly represented the client, the basis or rate of the fee and costs shall be communicated to the client, preferably in writing, before or within a reasonable time after commencing the representation.(f) Contingent Fees. As to contingent fees:(1) [no change](2) [no change](3) [no change](4) A lawyer who enters into an arrangement for, charges, or collects any fee in an action or claim for personal injury or for property damages or for death or loss of services resulting from personal injuries based upon tortious conduct of another, including products liability claims, whereby the compensation is to be dependent or contingent in whole or in part upon the successful prosecution or settlement thereof shall do so only under the following requirements:(A) [no change](B) The contract for representation of a client in a matter set forth in subdivision (f)(4) may provide for a contingent fee arrangement as agreed upon by the client and the lawyer, except as limited by the following provisions:(i) [no change](ii) If any client is unable to obtain an attorney of the client’s choice because of the limitations set forth in subdivision (f)(4)(B)(i), the client may petition the court in which the matter would be filed, if litigation is necessary, or if such court will not accept jurisdiction for the fee division, the circuit court wherein the cause of action arose, for approval of any fee contract between the client and an attorney of the client’s choosing. Such authorization shall be given if the court determines the client has a complete understanding of the client’s rights and the terms of the proposed contract. The application for authorization of such a contract can be filed as a separate proceeding before suit or simultaneously with the filing of a complaint. Proceedings thereon may occur before service on the defendant and this aspect of the file may be sealed. A petition under this subdivision shall contain a certificate showing service on the client and , if the petition is denied, a copy of the petition and order denying the petition shall be served on The Florida Bar in Tallahassee by the member of the bar who filed the petition. Authorization of such a contract shall not bar subsequent inquiry as to whether the fee actually claimed or charged is clearly excessive under subdivisions (a) and (b).(C) [no change](D) As to lawyers not in the same firm, a division of any fee within subdivision (f)(4) shall be on the following basis:(i) [no change](ii) [no change](iii) The 25% limitation shall not apply to those cases in which 2 or more lawyers or firms accept substantially equal active participation in the providing of legal services. In such circumstances counsel shall apply to the court in which the matter would be filed, if litigation is necessary, or if such court will not accept jurisdiction for the fee division, the circuit court wherein the cause of action arose, for authorization of the fee division in excess of 25%, based upon a sworn petition signed by all counsel that shall disclose in detail those services to be performed.The application for authorization of such a contract may be filed as a separate proceeding before suit or simultaneously with the filing of a complaint, or within 10 days of execution of a contract for division of fees when new counsel is engaged. Proceedings thereon may occur before service of process on any party and this aspect of the file may be sealed. Authorization of such contract shall not bar subsequent inquiry as to whether the fee actually claimed or charged is clearly excessive. An application under this subdivision shall contain a certificate showing service on the client and , if the application is denied, a copy of the petition and order denying the petition shall be served on The Florida Bar in Tallahassee by the member of the bar who filed the petition. Counsel may proceed with representation of the client pending court approval.(iv) [no change](5) [no change](6) [no change](g) Division of Fees Between Lawyers in Different Firms. [no change](h) Credit Plans. Charges made by any lawyer or law firm under an approved credit plan shall be only for services actually rendered or cash actually paid on behalf of the client. A lawyer or law firm may accept payment under a credit plan. No higher fee shall be charged and no additional charge shall be imposed by reason of a lawyer’s or law firm’s participation in a n approved credit plan.STATEMENT OF CLIENT’S RIGHTS FOR CONTINGENCY FEESBefore you, the prospective client, arrange a contingent fee agreement with a lawyer, you should understand this statement of your rights as a client. This statement is not a part of the actual contract between you and your lawyer, but, as a prospective client, you should be aware of these rights:1. [no change]2. [no change]3. [no change]4. [no change]5. [no change]6. [no change]7. [no change]8. You, the client, have the right to receive and approve a closing statement at the end of the case before you pay any money. The statement must list all of the financial details of the entire case, including the amount recovered, all expenses, and a precise statement of your lawyer’s fee. Until you approve the closing statement you need not pay any money to anyone, including your lawyer cannot pay any money to anyone, including you, without an appropriate order of the court. You also have the right to have every lawyer or law firm working on your case sign this closing statement.9. [no change]10. [no change]11. [no change]______________________________CommentBasis or rate of fee and costsWhen the lawyer has regularly represented a client, they ordinarily will have evolved an understanding concerning the basis or rate of the fee. In a new client-lawyer relationship, however, an understanding as to the fee should be promptly established. It is not necessary to recite all the factors that underlie the basis of the fee but only those that are directly involved in its computation. It is sufficient, for example, to state the basic rate is an hourly charge or a fixed amount or an estimated amount, or to identify the factors that may be taken into account in finally fixing the fee. When developments occur during the representation that render an earlier estimate substantially inaccurate, a revised estimate should be provided to the client. A written statement concerning the fee reduces the possibility of misunderstanding. Furnishing the client with a simple memorandum or a copy of the lawyer’s customary fee schedule is sufficient if the basis or rate of the fee is set forth. General overhead should be accounted for in a lawyer’s fee, whether the lawyer charges hourly, flat, or contingent fees. Filing fees, transcription, and the like should be charged to the client at the actual amount paid by the lawyer. A lawyer may agree with the client to charge a reasonable amount for in-house costs or services. In-house costs include items such as copying, faxing, long distance telephone, and computerized research. In-house services include paralegal services, investigative services, accounting services, and courier services. The lawyer should sufficiently communicate with the client regarding the costs charged to the client so that the client understands the amount of costs being charged or the method for calculation of those costs.Rule 4-1.8(e) should be consulted regarding a lawyer’s providing financial assistance to a client in connection with litigation.Terms of payment [no change]Contingent fee regulation [no change]Division of fee [no change]Disputes over fees [no change]Referral fees and practicesA secondary lawyer shall not be entitled to a fee greater than the limitation set forth in rule 4-1.5(f)(4)(D)(ii) merely because the lawyer agrees to do some or all of the following: (a) consults with the client; (b) answers interrogatories; (c) attends depositions; (d) reviews pleadings; (e) attends the trial; or (f) assumes joint legal responsibility to the client. However, the provisions do not contemplate that a secondary lawyer who does more than the above is necessarily entitled to a larger percentage of the fee than that allowed by the limitation.The provisions of rule 4-1.5(f)(4)(D)(iii) only apply where the participating lawyers have for purposes of the specific case established a co-counsel relationship. The need for court approval of a referral fee arrangement under rule 4-1.5(f)(4)(D)(iii) should only occur in a small percentage of cases arising under rule 4-1.5(f)(4) and usually occurs prior to the commencement of litigation or at the onset of the representation. However, in those cases in which litigation has been commenced or the representation has already begun, approval of the fee division should be sought within a reasonable period of time after the need for court approval of the fee division arises.In determining if a co-counsel relationship exists, the court should look to see if the lawyers have established a special partnership agreement for the purpose of the specific case or matter. If such an agreement does exist, it must provide for a sharing of services or responsibility and the fee division is based upon a division of the services to be rendered or the responsibility assumed. It is contemplated that a co-counsel situation would exist where a division of responsibility is based upon, but not limited to, the following: (a) based upon geographic considerations, the lawyers agree to divide the legal work, responsibility, and representation in a convenient fashion. Such a situation would occur when different aspects of a case must be handled in different locations; (b) where the lawyers agree to divide the legal work and representation based upon their particular expertise in the substantive areas of law involved in the litigation; or (c) where the lawyers agree to divide the legal work and representation along established lines of division, such as liability and damages, causation and damages, or other similar factors.The trial court’s responsibility when reviewing an application for authorization of a fee division under rule 4-1.5(f)(4)(D)(iii) is to determine if a co-counsel relationship exists in that particular case. If the court determines a co-counsel relationship exists and authorizes the fee division requested, the court does not have any responsibility to review or approve the specific amount of the fee division agreed upon by the lawyers and the client.Rule 4-1.5(f)(4)(D)(iv) applies to the situation where appellate counsel is retained during the trial of the case to assist with the appeal of the case. The percentages set forth in subdivision (f)(4)(D) are to be applicable after appellate counsel’s fee is established. However, the effect should not be to impose an unreasonable fee on the client.Credit Plans Credit plans include credit cards. If a lawyer accepts payment from a credit plan for an advance of fees and costs, the amount must be held in trust in accordance with chapter 5, Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, and the lawyer must add the lawyer’s own money to the trust account in an amount equal to the amount charged by the credit plan for doing business with the credit plan.***RULE 4-1.8 CONFLICT OF INTEREST; PROHIBITED AND OTHER TRANSACTIONS(a) Business Transactions With or Acquiring Interest Adverse to Client. [no change](b) Using Information to Disadvantage of Client. [no change](c) Gifts to Lawyer or Lawyer’s Family. A lawyer shall not prepare an instrument giving the lawyer or a person related to the lawyer as parent, child, sibling, or spouse any substantial gift from a client, including a testamentary gift, except where the client is related to the donee.(d) Acquiring Literary or Media Rights. [no change](e) Financial Assistance to Client. [no change](f) Compensation by Third Party. [no change](g) Settlement of Claims for Multiple Clients. [no change](h) Limiting Liability for Malpractice. [no change](i) Acquiring Proprietary Interest in Cause of Action. [no change](j) Representation of Insureds. [no change]STATEMENT OF INSURED CLIENT’S RIGHTS[no change]CommentTransactions between client and lawyerAs a general principle, all transactions between client and lawyer should be fair and reasonable to the client. In such transactions a review by independent counsel on behalf of the client is often advisable. Furthermore, a lawyer may not exploit information relating to the representation to the client’s disadvantage. For example, a lawyer who has learned that the client is investing in specific real estate may not, without the client’s consent, seek to acquire nearby property where doing so would adversely affect the client’s plan for investment. Subdivision (a) does not, however, apply to standard commercial transactions between the lawyer and the client for products or services that the client generally markets to others, for example, banking or brokerage services, medical services, products manufactured or distributed by the client, and utilities services. In such transactions the lawyer has no advantage in dealing with the client, and the restrictions in subdivision (a) are unnecessary and impracticable. Likewise, subdivision (a) does not prohibit a lawyer from acquiring or asserting a lien granted by law to secure the lawyer’s fee or expenses.A lawyer may accept a gift from a client, if the transaction meets general standards of fairness and if the lawyer does not prepare the instrument bestowing the gift. For example, a simple gift such as a present given at a holiday or as a token of appreciation is permitted. If effectuation of a substantial gift requires preparing a legal instrument such as a will or conveyance, however, the client should have the detached advice that another lawyer can provide and the lawyer should advise the client to seek advice of independent counsel. Subdivision (c) recognizes an exception where the client is a relative of the donee or the gift is not substantial.Literary rights [no change]Person paying for lawyer’s services [no change]Acquisition of interest in litigation [no change]Representation of insureds [no change]***RULE 4-1.16 DECLINING OR TERMINATING REPRESENTATION(a) When Lawyer Must Decline or Terminate Representation. [no change](b) When Withdrawal Is Allowed. Except as stated in subdivision (c), a lawyer may withdraw from representing a client if withdrawal can be accomplished without material adverse effect on the interests of the client, or if:(1) the client persists in a course of action involving the lawyer’s services that the lawyer reasonably believes is criminal or fraudulent;(2) the client has used the lawyer’s services to perpetrate a crime or fraud;(3) a the client insists upon pursuing an objective that the lawyer considers repugnant or imprudent;(4) the client fails substantially to fulfill an obligation to the lawyer regarding the lawyer’s services and has been given reasonable warning that the lawyer will withdraw unless the obligation is fulfilled;(5) the representation will result in an unreasonable financial burden on the lawyer or has been rendered unreasonably difficult by the client; or(6) other good cause for withdrawal exists.(c) Compliance With Order of Tribunal. [no change](d) Protection of Client’s Interest. [no change]Comment[no change]***4-3 ADVOCATE***RULE 4-3.3 CANDOR TOWARD THE TRIBUNAL(a) False Evidence; Duty to Disclose. [no change](b) Extent of Lawyer’s Duties. [no change](c) Evidence Believed to Be False. [no change](d) Ex Parte Proceedings. [no change]CommentThe advocate’s task is to present the client’s case with persuasive force. Performance of that duty while maintaining confidences of the client is qualified by the advocate’s duty of candor to the tribunal. However, an advocate does not vouch for the evidence submitted in a cause; the tribunal is responsible for assessing its probative value.Representations by a lawyer [no change]Misleading legal argument [no change]False evidence When evidence that a lawyer knows to be false is provided by a person who is not the client, the lawyer must refuse to offer it regardless of the client’s wishes.When false evidence is offered by the client, however, a conflict may arise between the lawyer’s duty to keep the client’s revelations confidential and the duty of candor to the court. Upon ascertaining that material evidence is false, the lawyer should seek to persuade the client that the evidence should not be offered or, if it has been offered, that its false character should immediately be disclosed. If the persuasion is ineffective, the lawyer must take reasonable remedial measures.Except in the defense of a criminally accused, the rule generally recognized is that, if necessary to rectify the situation, an advocate must disclose the existence of the client’s deception to the court or to the other party. Such a disclosure can result in grave consequences to the client, including not only a sense of betrayal but also loss of the case and perhaps a prosecution for perjury. But the alternative is that the lawyer cooperate in deceiving the court, thereby subverting the truth-finding process that the adversary system is designed to implement. See rule 4-1.2(d). Furthermore, unless it is clearly understood that the lawyer will act upon the duty to disclose the existence of false evidence, the client can simply reject the lawyer’s advice to reveal the false evidence and insist that the lawyer keep silent. Thus, the client could in effect coerce the lawyer into being a party to fraud on the court.Perjury by a criminal defendant [no change]Remedial measures [no change]Constitutional requirements [no change]Refusing to offer proof believed to be false [no change]Ex parte proceedings [no change]4-4 TRANSACTIONS WITH PERSONS OTHER THAN CLIENTS***RULE 4-4.2 COMMUNICATION WITH PERSON REPRESENTED BY COUNSEL[no change]CommentThis rule does not prohibit communication with a party, or an employee or agent of a party, concerning matters outside the representation. For example, the existence of a controversy between a government agency and a private party, or between 2 organizations, does not prohibit a lawyer for either from communicating with nonlawyer representatives of the other regarding a separate matter. Also, parties to a matter may communicate directly with each other and a lawyer having independent justification for communicating with the other party is permitted to do so. Communications authorized by law Permitted communications include, for example, the right of a party to a controversy with a government agency to speak with government officials about the matter.In the case of an organization, this rule prohibits communications by a lawyer for 1 party concerning the matter in representation with persons having a managerial responsibility on behalf of the organization and with any other person whose act or omission in connection with that matter may be imputed to the organization for purposes of civil or criminal liability or whose statement may constitute an admission on the part of the organization. If an agent or employee of the organization is represented in the matter by the agent’s or employee’s own counsel, the consent by that counsel to a communication will be sufficient for purposes of this rule. Compare rule 4-3.4(f). This rule also covers any person, whether or not a party to a formal proceeding, who is represented by counsel concerning the matter in question.***4-7 INFORMATION ABOUT LEGAL SERVICES***4-7.2 COMMUNICATIONS CONCERNING A LAWYER’S SERVICESThe following shall apply to any communication conveying information about a lawyer’s or a law firm’s services:(a) Required Information. [no change] (b) Prohibited Statements and Information. [no change]center_img Mar 01, 2003 the board Notices Television is now one of the most powerful media for conveying information to the public; a blanket prohibition against television advertising, therefore, would impede the flow of information about legal services to many sectors of the public. However, the unique characteristics of electronic media, including the pervasiveness of television and radio, the ease with which these media are abused, and the passiveness of the viewer or listener, make the electronic media especially subject to regulation in the public interest. Therefore, greater restrictions on the manner of television and radio advertising are justified than might be appropriate for advertisements in the other media. To prevent abuses, including potential interferences with the fair and proper administration of justice and the creation of incorrect public perceptions or assumptions about the manner in which our legal system works, and to promote the public’s confidence in the legal profession and this country’s system of justice while not interfering with the free flow of useful information to prospective users of legal services, it is necessary also to restrict the techniques used in television and radio advertising.This rule is designed to ensure that the advertising is not misleading and does not create unreasonable or unrealistic expectations about the results the lawyer may be able to obtain in any particular case, and to encourage the provision of useful information to the public about the availability and terms of legal services. Thus, the rule allows lawyer advertisements in which a lawyer who is a member of the advertising firm personally appears to speak regarding the legal services the lawyer or law firm is available to perform, the fees to be charged for such services, and the background and experience of the lawyer or law firm. The prohibition against false, misleading, or manipulative advertising is intended to preclude, among other things, the use of scenes creating suspense, scenes containing exaggerations, or situations calling for legal services, scenes creating consumer problems through characterization and dialogue ending with the lawyer solving the problem, and the audio or video portrayal of an event or situation. Although dialogue is not necessarily prohibited under this rule, advertisements using dialogue are more likely to be misleading or manipulative than those advertisements using a single lawyer to articulate factual information about the lawyer or law firm’s services.A firm partner or shareholder, of course, is a “member” of a law firm within the intent of the rule; likewise, a lawyer who is a law firm associate as defined in The Florida Bar v. Fetterman, 439 So.2d 835 (Fla. 1983) is a firm “member.” Whether other lawyers are “members” of a firm for purposes of this rule must be evaluated in light of criteria that include whether the lawyer’s practice is physically located at the firm and whether the lawyer practices solely through the firm. There should be a presumption that lawyers other than partners, shareholders, or associates are not “members” of a law firm for purposes of this rule.The prohibition against any background sound other than instrumental music precludes, for example, the sound of sirens or car crashes and the use of jingles.***RULE 4-7.8 EXEMPTIONS FROM THE FILING AND REVIEW REQUIREMENTThe following are exempt from the filing requirements of rule 4-7.7:(a) Any advertisement in any of the public media, including the yellow pages of telephone directories, that contains no neither illustrations and no r information other than that permissible content of advertisements set forth in subdivision (c)(11) of rule 4-7.2 elsewhere in this subchapter. This exemption extends to television advertisements only if the visual display featured in such advertisements is limited to the words spoken by the announcer.(b) A brief announcement in any of the public media that identifies a lawyer or law firm as a contributor to a specified charity or as a sponsor of a public service announcement or a specified charitable, community, or public interest program, activity, or event, provided that the announcement contains no information about the lawyer or law firm other than name, the city where the law offices are located, and the fact of the sponsorship or contribution. In determining whether an announcement is a public service announcement for purposes of this rule and subdivision (c)(11)(I) of rule 4-7.2, the rule setting forth permissible content of advertisements, the following are criteria that may be considered:(1) whether the content of the announcement appears to serve the particular interests of the lawyer or law firm as much as or more than the interests of the public;(2) whether the announcement contains information concerning the lawyer’s or law firm’s area of practice, legal background, or experience;(3) whether the announcement contains the address or telephone number of the lawyer or law firm;(4) whether the announcement concerns a legal subject;(5) whether the announcement contains legal advice; and(6) whether the lawyer or law firm paid to have the announcement published.(c) [no change](d) [no change](e) [no change](f) [no change](g) [no change]Comment[no change]***RULE 4-7.11 LAWYER REFERRAL SERVICES(a) When Lawyers May Accept Referrals. A lawyer shall not accept referrals from a lawyer referral service unless the service:(1) engages in no communication with the public and in no direct contact with prospective clients in a manner that would violate the Rules of Professional Conduct if the communication or contact were made by the lawyer;(2) receives no fee or charge that constitutes a division or sharing of fees, unless the service is a not-for-profit service approved by The Florida Bar pursuant to chapter 8 of these rules;(3) refers clients only to persons lawfully permitted to practice law in Florida when the services to be rendered constitute the practice of law in Florida;(4) carries or requires each lawyer participating in the service to carry professional liability insurance in an amount not less than $100,000 per claim or occurrence;(5) furnishes The Florida Bar, on a quarterly basis, with the names and Florida bar membership numbers of all lawyers participating in the service; and(6) furnishes The Florida Bar, on a quarterly basis, the names of all persons authorized to act on behalf of the service;(7) responds in writing, within 15 days, to any official inquiry by bar counsel when bar counsel is seeking information described in this subdivision or conducting an investigation into the conduct of the service or an attorney who accepts referrals from the service;( 6 8 ) neither represents nor implies to the public that the service is endorsed or approved by The Florida Bar, unless the service is subject to chapter 8 of these rules . ; and(9) uses its actual legal name or a registered fictitious name in all communications with the public. (b) Responsibility of Lawyer. A lawyer who accepts referrals from a lawyer referral service is responsible for ensuring that any advertisements or written communications used by the service comply with the requirements of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, including and that the service is in compliance with the provisions of this subchapter.(c) Definition of Lawyer Referral Service. [no change]Comment[no change]4-8 MAINTAINING THE INTEGRITY OF THE PROFESSION***RULE 4-8.4 MISCONDUCTA lawyer shall not: (a) [no change] (b) [no change] (c) [no change] (d) [no change] (e) [no change] (f) [no change] (g) [no change](h) [no change]( i ) engage in sexual conduct with a client or a representative of a client that adversely exploits the interests of the client or the lawyer-client relationship including, but not limited to:(1) requiring or demanding sexual relations with a client or a representative of a client incident to or as a condition of a legal representation; (2) employing coercion, intimidation, or undue influence in entering into sexual relations with a client or a representative of a client; or (3) continuing to represent a client if the lawyer’s sexual relations with the client or a representative of the client cause the lawyer to render incompetent representation.CommentMany kinds of illegal conduct reflect adversely on fitness to practice law, such as offenses involving fraud and the offense of willful failure to file an income tax return. However, some kinds of offense carry no such implication. Traditionally, the distinction was drawn in terms of offenses involving “moral turpitude.” That concept can be construed to include offenses concerning some matters of personal morality, such as adultery and comparable offenses, that have no specific connection to fitness for the practice of law. Although a lawyer is personally answerable to the entire criminal law, a lawyer should be professionally answerable only for offenses that indicate lack of those characteristics relevant to law practice. Offenses involving violence, dishonesty, or breach of trust or serious interference with the administration of justice are in that category. A pattern of repeated offenses, even ones of minor significance when considered separately, can indicate indifference to legal obligation.A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of rule 4-1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning, or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law.Subdivision (d) of this rule proscribes conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice. Such proscription includes the prohibition against discriminatory conduct committed by a lawyer while performing duties in connection with the practice of law. The proscription extends to any characteristic or status that is not relevant to the proof of any legal or factual issue in dispute. Such conduct, when directed towards litigants, jurors, witnesses, court personnel, or other lawyers, whether based on race, ethnicity, gender, religion, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, age, socioeconomic status, employment, physical characteristic, or any other basis, subverts the administration of justice and undermines the public’s confidence in our system of justice, as well as notions of equality. This subdivision does not prohibit a lawyer from representing a client as may be permitted by applicable law, such as, by way of example, representing a client accused of committing discriminatory conduct.Lawyers holding public office assume legal responsibilities going beyond those of other citizens. A lawyer’s abuse of public office can suggest an inability to fulfill the professional role of attorney. The same is true of abuse of positions of private trust such as trustee, executor, administrator, guardian, or agent and officer, director, or manager of a corporation or other organization.A lawyer’s obligation to respond to an inquiry by a disciplinary agency is stated in subdivision (g) and rule 3-7.6(g)(2). While response is mandatory, the lawyer may deny the charges or assert any available privilege or immunity or interpose any disability that prevents disclosure of certain matter. A response containing a proper invocation thereof is sufficient under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar. This obligation is necessary to ensure the proper and efficient operation of the disciplinary system.Subdivision (h) of this rule was added to make consistent the treatment of attorneys who fail to pay child support with the treatment of other professionals who fail to pay child support, in accordance with the provisions of section 61.13015, Florida Statutes. That section provides for the suspension or denial of a professional license due to delinquent child support payments after all other available remedies for the collection of child support have been exhausted. Likewise, subdivision (h) of this rule should not be used as the primary means for collecting child support, but should be used only after all other available remedies for the collection of child support have been exhausted. Before a grievance may be filed or a grievance procedure initiated under this subdivision, the court that entered the child support order must first make a finding of willful refusal to pay. The child support obligation at issue under this rule includes both domestic (Florida) and out-of-state (URESA) child support obligations, as well as arrearages.Subdivision ( i ) proscribes exploitation of the client and the lawyer-client relationship by means of commencement of sexual conduct. The lawyer-client relationship is grounded on mutual trust. A sexual relationship that exploits that trust compromises the lawyer-client relationship. A sexual relationship between a lawyer and a client that exists before commencement of the lawyer-client relationship does not violate this subdivision if the lawyer and client continue to engage in sexual conduct during the legal representation. For purposes of this subdivision, client means an individual, not or a representative of the client, including but not limited to a duly authorized constituent of a corporate or other non-personal entity, and lawyer refers only to the lawyer(s) engaged in the legal representation and not other members of the law firm.***RULE 4-8.6 AUTHORIZED BUSINESS ENTITIES (a) Authorized Business Entities. Lawyers may practice law in the form of professional service corporations, professional limited liability companies, sole proprietorships, general partnerships, or registered limited liability partnerships organized or qualified under applicable law. A professional service corporation, a professional limited liability company, or a registered limited liability partnership is an Such forms of practice are authorized business entit y ies under these rules.(b) Practice of Law Limited to Members of The Florida Bar. [no change](c) Qualifications of Managers, Directors and Officers. [no change](d) Violation of Statute or Rule. [no change](e) Disqualification of Shareholder, Member, or Partner; Severance of Financial Interests. Whenever a shareholder of a professional service corporation, a member of a professional limited liability company , proprietor, or partner in a registered limited liability partnership becomes legally disqualified to render legal services in this state, said shareholder, member , proprietor, or partner shall sever all employment with and financial interests in such authorized business entity immediately. For purposes of this rule the term “legally disqualified” shall not include suspension from the practice of law for a period of time less than 91 days unless the legally disqualified lawyer is the sole shareholder, member, proprietor, or partner of the authorized business entity. Severance of employment and financial interests required by this rule shall not preclude the shareholder, member, proprietor, or partner from receiving compensation based on legal fees generated for legal services performed during the time when the shareholder, member , proprietor, or partner was legally qualified to render legal services in this state. This provision shall not prohibit employment of a legally disqualified shareholder, member, proprietor, or partner in a position that does not render legal service nor payment to an existing profit sharing or pension plan to the extent permitted in rule s 3-6.1 and 4-5.4(a)(3), or as required by applicable law.(f) Cessation of Legal Services. Whenever all shareholders of a professional service corporation, or all members of a professional limited liability company, or all partners in a registered limited liability partnership become legally disqualified to render legal services in this state, the authorized business entity shall cease the rendition of legal services in Florida.(g) Application of Statutory Provisions. [no change]CommentIn 1961 this court recognized the authority of the legislature to enact statutory provisions creating corporations, particularly professional service corporations. But this court also noted that “[e]nabling action by this Court is therefore an essential condition precedent to authorize members of The Florida Bar to qualify under and engage in the practice of their profession pursuant to The 1961 Act.” In Re The Florida Bar, 133 So. 2d 554, at 555 (Fla. 1961).The same is true today, whatever the form of business entity created by legislative enactment. Hence, this rule is adopted to continue authorization for members of the bar to practice law in the form of a professional service corporation, a professional limited liability company, or a registered limited liability partnership. These type of entities are collectively referred to as authorized business entities. This rule does not preclude any also permits a member of the bar from practicing to practice law as a sole proprietor or as a member of a general partnership. These type of entitites are collectively referred to as authorized business entities.Limitation on rendering legal servicesNo person may render legal services on behalf of an authorized business entity unless that person is otherwise authorized to do so via membership in the bar or through a motion for leave to appear (pro hac vice). Neither the adoption of this rule nor the statutory provisions alter this limitation.Employment by and financial interests in a professional service corporation an authorized business entityThis rule and the statute require termination of employment of a shareholder, member, or partner when same is “legally disqualified” to render legal services. The purpose of this provision is to prohibit compensation based on fees for legal services rendered at a time when the shareholder, member, or partner cannot render the same type of services. Continued engagement in capacities other than rendering legal services with the same or similar compensation would allow circumvention of prohibitions of sharing legal fees with one not qualified to render legal services. Other rules prohibit the sharing of legal fees with nonlawyers and this rule continues the application of that type of prohibition. However, nothing in this rule or the statute prohibits payment to the disqualified shareholder, member, or partner for legal services rendered while the shareholder, member, or partner was qualified to render same, even though payment for the legal services is not received until the shareholder, member, or partner is legally disqualified.Similarly, this rule and the statute require the severance of “financial interests” of a legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner. The same reasons apply to severance of financial interests as those that apply to severance of employment. Other provisions of these rules proscribe limits on employment and the types of duties that a legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner may be assigned.Practical application of the statute and this rule to the requirements of the practice of law mandates exclusion of short term, temporary removal of qualifications to render legal services. Hence, any suspension of less than 91 days, including membership fees delinquency suspensions, is excluded from the definition of the term. These temporary impediments to the practice of law are such that with the passage of time or the completion of ministerial acts, the member of the bar is automatically qualified to render legal services. Severe tax consequences would result from forced severance and subsequent reestablishment (upon reinstatement of qualifications) of all financial interests in these instances.However, the exclusion of such suspensions from the definition of the term does not authorize the payment to the disqualified shareholder, member, or partner of compensation based on fees for legal services rendered during the time when the shareholder, member, or partner is not personally qualified to render such services. Continuing the employment of a legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner during the term of a suspension of less than 91 days requires the authorized business entity to take steps to avoid the practice of law by the legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner, the ability of the legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner to control the actions of members of the bar qualified to render legal services, and payment of compensation to the legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner based on legal services rendered while the legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner is not qualified to render them. Mere characterization of continued compensation, which is the same or similar to that the legally disqualified shareholder, member, or partner received when qualified to render legal services, is not sufficient to satisfy the requirements of this rule.Profit sharing or pension plans [no change]Interstate Practice [no change]CHAPTER 5 RULES REGULATING TRUST ACCOUNTS5-1 GENERALLYRULE 5-1.1 TRUST ACCOUNTS(a) Nature of Money or Property Entrusted to Attorney.(1) Trust Account Required; Commingling Prohibited. A lawyer shall hold in trust, separate from the lawyer’s own property, funds and property of clients or third persons that are in a lawyer’s possession in connection with a representation. All funds, including advances for fees, costs, and expenses, shall be kept in a separate bank or savings and loan association account maintained in the state where the lawyer’s office is situated or elsewhere with the consent of the client or third person and clearly labeled and designated as a trust account. A lawyer may maintain funds belonging to the lawyer in the trust account in an amount no more than is reasonably sufficient to pay bank charges relating to the trust account.(2) Compliance With Client Directives. [no change](3) Safe Deposit Boxes. [no change](b) Application of Trust Funds or Property to Specific Purpose. [no change](c) Liens Permitted. [no change](d) Controversies as to Amount of Fees. [no change](e) Notice of Receipt of Trust Funds; Delivery; Accounting. [no change] (f) Disputed Ownership of Trust Funds. [no change](g) Interest on Trust Accounts (IOTA) Program.(1) Definitions. [no change](2) Required Participation. All nominal or short-term funds belonging to clients or third persons that are placed in trust with any member of The Florida Bar practicing law from an office or other business location within the state of Florida shall be deposited into one or more IOTA accounts, except as provided elsewhere in these rules with respect to funds maintained other than in a bank account, or as provided in this chapter. Only trust funds that are nominal or short term shall be deposited into an IOTA account. The member shall certify annually, in writing, that the member is in compliance with, or is exempt from, the provisions of this rule.(3) Determination of Nominal or Short-Term Funds. [no change](4) Notice to Foundation. [no change](5) Eligible Institution Participation in IOTA. [no change](6) Small Fund Amounts. [no change](7) Confidentiality. [no change](h) Interest on Funds That Are Not Nominal or Short-Term. A lawyer who holds funds for a client or third person and who determines that the funds are not nominal or short-term as defined elsewhere in this subchapter shall not receive benefit from interest on funds held in trust.( h i ) Unidentifiable Trust Fund Accumulations and Trust Funds Held for Missing Owners. [no further change]( i j ) Disbursement Against Uncollected Funds. [no further change]Comment A lawyer must hold property of others with the care required of a professional fiduciary. This chapter requires maintenance of a bank or savings and loan association account, clearly labeled as a trust account and in which only client or third party trust funds are held. Securities should be kept in a safe deposit box, except when some other form of safekeeping is warranted by special circumstances. All property that is the property of clients or third persons should be kept separate from the lawyer’s business and personal property and, if money, in 1 or more trust accounts, unless requested otherwise in writing by the client. Separate trust accounts may be warranted when administering estate money or acting in similar fiduciary capacities. A lawyer who holds funds for a client or third person and who determines that the funds are not nominal or short-term as defined elsewhere in this subchapter should hold the funds in a separate interest-bearing account with the interest accruing to the benefit of the client or third person unless directed otherwise in writing by the client or third person. Lawyers often receive funds from third parties from which the lawyer’s fee will be paid. If there is risk that the client may divert the funds without paying the fee, the lawyer is not required to remit the portion from which the fee is to be paid. However, a lawyer may not hold funds to coerce a client into accepting the lawyer’s contention. The disputed portion of the funds should be kept in trust and the lawyer should suggest means for prompt resolution of the dispute, such as arbitration. The undisputed portion of the funds shall be promptly distributed. Third parties, such as a client’s creditors, may have just claims against funds or other property in a lawyer’s custody. A lawyer may have a duty under applicable law to protect such third party claims against wrongful interference by the client and, accordingly, may refuse to surrender the property to the client. However, a lawyer should not unilaterally assume to arbitrate a dispute between the client and the third party, and, where appropriate, the lawyer should consider the possibility of depositing the property or funds in dispute into the registry of the applicable court so that the matter may be adjudicated. The obligations of a lawyer under this chapter are independent of those arising from activity other than rendering legal services. For example, a lawyer who serves as an escrow agent is governed by the applicable law relating to fiduciaries even though the lawyer does not render legal services in the transaction. Each lawyer is required to be familiar with and comply with Rules Regulating Trust Accounts as adopted by the Supreme Court of Florida. Money or other property entrusted to a lawyer for a specific purpose, including advances for fees, costs, and expenses, is held in trust and must be applied only to that purpose. Money and other property of clients coming into the hands of a lawyer are not subject to counterclaim or setoff for attorney’s fees, and a refusal to account for and deliver over such property upon demand shall be a conversion. This does not preclude the retention of money or other property upon which a lawyer has a valid lien for services or to preclude the payment of agreed fees from the proceeds of transactions or collections. Advances for fees and costs (funds against which costs and fees are billed) are the property of the client or third party paying same on a client’s behalf and are required to be maintained in trust, separate from the lawyer’s property. Retainers are not funds against which future services are billed. Retainers are funds paid to guarantee the future availability of the lawyer’s legal services and are earned by the lawyer upon receipt. Retainers, being funds of the lawyer, may not be placed in the client’s trust account. The test of excessiveness found elsewhere in the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar applies to all fees for legal services including retainers, nonrefundable retainers, and minimum or flat fees.RULE 5-1.2 TRUST ACCOUNTING RECORDS AND PROCEDURES(a) Applicability. [no change](b) Minimum Trust Accounting Records. The following are the minimum trust accounting records that shall be maintained:(1) A separate bank or savings and loan association account or accounts in the name of the lawyer or law firm and clearly labeled and designated as a “trust account.”(2) Original or duplicate deposit slips and, in the case of currency or coin, an additional cash receipts book, clearly identifying:(A) the date and source of all trust funds received; and(B) the client or matter for which the funds were received.(3) Original canceled checks, all of which must be numbered consecutively, or, if the financial institution wherein the trust account is maintained does not return the original checks, copies thereof that include all endorsements, as provided by the financial institution.(4) [no change](5) [no change](6) [no change](7) [no change](c) Minimum Trust Accounting Procedures. [no change] (d) Record Retention. [no change](e) Audits. [no change](f) Cost of Audit. [no change](g) Failure to Comply With Subpoena. [no change]CommentThese rules shall apply to matters wherein a choice of laws analysis indicates that such matters are governed by the laws of Florida.A lawyer must hold property of others with the care required of a professional fiduciary. This chapter requires maintenance of a bank or savings and loan association account, clearly labeled as a trust account and in which only client or third party trust funds are held. Securities should be kept in a safe deposit box, except when some other form of safekeeping is warranted by special circumstances.All property that is the property of clients or third persons should be kept separate from the lawyer’s business and personal property and, if money, in 1 or more trust accounts, unless requested otherwise in writing by the client. Separate trust accounts may be warranted when administering estate money or acting in similar fiduciary capacities.Lawyers often receive funds from third parties from which the lawyer’s fee will be paid. If there is risk that the client may divert the funds without paying the fee, the lawyer is not required to remit the portion from which the fee is to be paid. However, a lawyer may not hold funds to coerce a client into accepting the lawyer’s contention. The disputed portion of the funds should be kept in trust and the lawyer should suggest means for prompt resolution of the dispute, such as arbitration. The undisputed portion of the funds shall be promptly distributed.Third parties, such as a client’s creditors, may have just claims against funds or other property in a lawyer’s custody. A lawyer may have a duty under applicable law to protect such third party claims against wrongful interference by the client and, accordingly, may refuse to surrender the property to the client. However, a lawyer should not unilaterally assume to arbitrate a dispute between the client and the third party, and, where appropriate, the lawyer should consider the possibility of depositing the property or funds in dispute into the registry of the applicable court so that the matter may be adjudicated.The obligations of a lawyer under this chapter are independent of those arising from activity other than rendering legal services. For example, a lawyer who serves as an escrow agent is governed by the applicable law relating to fiduciaries even though the lawyer does not render legal services in the transaction. Each lawyer is required to be familiar with and comply with Rules Regulating Trust Accounts as adopted by the Supreme Court of Florida.Money or other property entrusted to a lawyer for a specific purpose, including advances for fees, costs, and expenses, is held in trust and must be applied only to that purpose. Money and other property of clients coming into the hands of a lawyer are not subject to counterclaim or setoff for attorney’s fees, and a refusal to account for and deliver over such property upon demand shall be a conversion. This does not preclude the retention of money or other property upon which a lawyer has a valid lien for services or to preclude the payment of agreed fees from the proceeds of transactions or collections.Advances for fees and costs (funds against which costs and fees are billed) are the property of the client or third party paying same on a client’s behalf and are required to be maintained in trust, separate from the lawyer’s property. Retainers are not funds against which future services are billed. Retainers are funds paid to guarantee the future availability of the lawyer’s legal services and are earned by the lawyer upon receipt. Retainers, being funds of the lawyer, may not be placed in the client’s trust account.The test of excessiveness found elsewhere in the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar applies to all fees for legal services including retainers, nonrefundable retainers, and minimum or flat fees.CHAPTER 6 LEGAL SPECIALIZATION AND EDUCATION PROGRAMS6-1 GENERALLY***Rule 6-1.5 Disqualification as Attorney Due to Conflict. (a) Members of the BLSE, Members of the Certification Committees, Members of the Board of Governors, and Employees of The Florida Bar . No member of the BLSE, member of a certification committee, member of the board of governors, or employee of The Florida Bar shall represent a party other than The Florida Bar in certification proceedings authorized under these rules.(b) Former Members of the BLSE, Former Members of the Certification Committees, Former Board Members, and Former Employees . No former member of the BLSE, former member of a certification committee, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar shall represent any party other than The Florida Bar in certification proceedings authorized under these rules if personally involved to any degree in the matter while a member of the BLSE, certification committee, board of governors, or while an employee of The Florida Bar. A former member of the BLSE, former member of a certification committee, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar who did not participate personally in any way in the matter or in any related matter in which the attorney seeks to be a representative, and who did not serve in a supervisory capacity over such matter, shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar for 1 year after such service without the express consent of the board.(c) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of BLSE Members, Certification Committee Members, or Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar . Members of the firms of a board of governors member, BLSE member, or certification committee member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in certification proceedings authorized under these rules without the express consent of the board.(d) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Former BLSE Members, Former Certification Committee Members, or Former Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. Attorneys in the firms of a former board of governors member, former BLSE member, or former certification committee member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in certification proceedings authorized under these rules for 1 year after the former member’s service without the express consent of the board.***6-3 FLORIDA CERTIFICATION PLANRULE 6-3.1 ADMINISTRATIONThe board of legal specialization and education shall have the authority and responsibility to administer the program for regulation of certification including:(a) [no change](b) [no change](c) [no change](d) [no change](e) [no change](f) [no change](g) [no change](h) establishing policies, procedures, and appropriate fees to evaluate and accredit lawyer certifying organizations and programs;(i) reporting as required, but at least annually, to the board of governors on the status and conditions of the plan;( i j ) determining standards, rules, and regulations to implement these rules in accordance with the minimum standards prescribed by the Supreme Court of Florida; and( j k ) delegating to The Florida Bar staff any of the administrative responsibilities of the board of legal specialization and education providing said board retains responsibility for staff decisions.***RULE 6-3.10 RIGHT OF APPEALA lawyer who is refused certification or recertification, or whose certificate is revoked by the board of legal specialization and education, or any person who is aggrieved by a ruling or determination of that board shall have the right to appeal the ruling to the board of governors under such rules and regulations as it may prescribe. Exhaustion of this right of appeal shall be a condition precedent to judicial review by the Supreme Court of Florida. Such review shall be by petition for review in accordance with the procedures set forth in rule 9.100, Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure.***6-24 STANDARDS FOR CERTIFICATION OF A BOARD CERTIFIED CONSTRUCTION LAW LAWYERRULE 6-24.1 GENERALLYA lawyer who is a member in good standing of The Florida Bar and who meets the standards prescribed below may be issued an appropriate certificate identifying the lawyer as a “Board Certified Construction Lawyer.” The purpose of the standards is to identify those lawyers who practice construction law and have the special knowledge, skills, and proficiency, as well as the character, ethics, and reputation for professionalism, to be properly identified to the public as certified construction lawyers.RULE 6-24.2 DEFINITIONS(a) Construction Law. “Construction law” is the practice of law dealing with matters relating to the design and construction of improvements on private and public projects including, but not limited to, construction dispute resolution, contract negotiation, preparation, award and administration, lobbying in governmental hearings, oversight and document review, construction lending and insurance, construction licensing, and the analysis and litigation of problems arising out of the Florida Construction Lien Law, section 255.05, Florida Statutes, and the federal Miller Act, 40 U.S.C. §270.(b) Practice of Law. The “practice of law” for this area is set out in rule 6-3.5(c)(1).(c) Construction Law Certification Committee. The construction law certification committee shall include a minimum of 3 members with experience in transactional construction law and 3 members with experience in construction law litigation.RULE 6-24.3 MINIMUM STANDARDS(a) Minimum Period of Practice. The applicant shall have been engaged in the practice of law in the United States, or engaged in the practice of United States law while in a foreign country, and shall have been a member in good standing of the bar of any state of the United States or the District of Columbia for a period of 5 years as of the date of filing an application. The years of law practice need not be consecutive.(b) Substantial Involvement. To become certified as a construction lawyer, a lawyer must demonstrate substantial involvement in construction law. Substantial involvement shall include the following:(1) At least 5 years of actual practice of law of which at least 40 percent has been spent in active participation in construction law. At least 3 years of this practice shall be immediately preceding application.(2) Substantial involvement means the applicant has devoted 40 percent or more of the applicant’s practice to matters in which issues of construction law are significant factors and in which the applicant had substantial and direct participation in those construction law issues. An applicant must furnish information concerning the frequency of the applicant’s work and the nature of the issues involved. For the purposes of this subdivision the “practice of law” shall be as defined in rule 6-3.5(c)(1), except that it shall also include time devoted to lecturing and/or authoring books or articles on construction law if the applicant was engaged in the practice of law during such period. Demonstration of compliance with this requirement shall be made initially through a form of questionnaire approved by the construction law certification committee but written or oral supplementation may be required.(c) Peer Review. The applicant shall submit the names and addresses of 5 attorneys who are familiar with the applicant’s practice, not including attorneys who currently practice in the applicant’s law firm, who can attest to the applicant’s special competence and substantial involvement in the field of construction law, as well as the applicant’s character, ethics, and reputation for professionalism. The board of legal specialization and education and the construction law certification committee may authorize references from persons other than attorneys and may also make such additional inquiries as deemed appropriate.(d) Education. The applicant must demonstrate that during the 3-year period immediately preceding the date of application, the applicant has met the continuing legal education requirements in construction law as follows. The required number of hours shall be established by the board of legal specialization and education and shall in no event be less than 45 hours. Credit for attendance at continuing legal education seminars shall be given only for programs that are directly related to construction law. The education requirement may be satisfied by 1 or more of the following:(1) attendance at continuing legal education seminars meeting the requirements set forth above;(2) lecturing at, and/or serving on the steering committee of, such continuing legal education seminars;(3) authoring articles or books published in professional periodicals or other professional publications;(4) teaching courses in construction law at an approved law school or other graduate level program presented by a recognized professional education association;(5) completing such home study programs as may be approved by the board of legal specialization and education or the construction law certification committee, subject to the limitation that no more than 50 percent of the required number of hours of education may be satisfied through home study programs; or(6) such other methods as may be approved by the board of legal specialization and education and the construction law certification committee.The board of legal specialization and education and the construction law certification committee shall establish policies applicable to this rule, including, but not limited to, approval of credit hours allocable to any of the above-listed continuing legal education activities. Such policies shall provide that credit hours shall be allocable to each separate but substantially different lecture, article, or other activity described in subdivisions (2), (3), and (4) above.(e) Examination. The applicant must pass an examination, applied uniformly to all applicants, to demonstrate sufficient knowledge, proficiency, and experience in the practice of law applicable to the design and construction of projects in Florida construction law to justify the representation of special competence to the legal profession and the public.RULE 6-24.4 RECERTIFICATIONRecertification shall be pursuant to the following standards:(a) Substantial Involvement. A satisfactory showing, as determined by the board of legal specialization and education and the certification committee, of continuous and substantial involvement in construction law throughout the period since the last date of certification. The demonstration of substantial involvement of 40 percent or more during each year after certification or prior recertification shall be made in accordance with the standards set forth in rule 6-24.3(b).(b) Education. Completion of at least 75 hours of continuing legal education since the last application for certification (or recertification). The continuing legal education must logically be expected to enhance the proficiency of attorneys who are board certified in construction law.(c) Peer Review. An applicant for recertification shall submit the names and addresses of 5 attorneys or judges who are familiar with the applicant’s practice, not including lawyers who currently practice in the applicant’s law firm, who can attest to the applicant’s reputation for special competence and substantial involvement in the field of construction law, as well as the applicant’s character, ethics, and reputation for professionalism. The board of legal specialization and education and the construction law certification committee may also make such additional inquiries as they deem appropriate.***CHAPTER 10 STANDING COMMITTEE10-4 CIRCUIT COMMITTEESRULE 10-4.1 GENERALLY(a) Appointment and Terms. Each circuit committee shall be appointed by the court on advice of the board of governors and shall consist of not fewer than 3 members, at least one-third of whom shall be nonlawyers. All appointees shall be residents of the circuit or have their principal office in the circuit. The terms of the members of circuit committees shall be for 1 3 year s from the date of appointment by the court or until such time as their successors are appointed and qualified. Continuous service of a member shall not exceed 3 years 2 consecutive 3-year terms. A member shall not be reappointed for a period of 3 1 year s after the end of the member’s third term provided, however, the expiration of the term of any member shall not disqualify that member from concluding any investigations pending before that member. Any member of a circuit committee may be removed from office by the board of governors.(b) Committee Chair. For each circuit committee there shall be a chair designated by the board of governors designated reviewer of that committee. A vice-chair and secretary may be designated by the chair of each circuit committee. The chair shall be a member of The Florida Bar.(c) Quorum. [no change](d) Panels. [no change](e) Duties. [no change](f) Circuit Committee Meetings. [no change]10-5 COMPLAINT PROCESSING AND INITIAL INVESTIGATORY PROCEDURES***Rule 10-5.2 Disqualification as Attorney for Respondent Due to Conflict.(a) Members of the Standing Committee on UPL (Standing Committee), Members of the Circuit UPL Committees (Circuit Committees), Members of the Board of Governors, and Employees of The Florida Bar . No member of the standing committee, member of a circuit committee, member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, or employee of The Florida Bar shall represent a party other than The Florida Bar in UPL proceedings authorized under these rules.(b) Former Members of the Standing Committee, Former Members of the Circuit Committees, Former Board Members, and Former Employees . No former member of the standing committee, former member of a circuit committee, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar shall represent any party other than The Florida Bar in UPL proceedings authorized under these rules if personally involved to any degree in the matter while a member of the standing committee, circuit committee, board of governors, or while an employee of The Florida Bar.A former member of the standing committee, former member of a circuit committee, former member of the board of governors, or former employee of The Florida Bar who did not participate personally in any way in the matter or in any related matter in which the attorney seeks to be a representative, and who did not serve in a supervisory capacity over such matter, shall not represent any party except The Florida Bar for 1 year after such service without the express consent of the board.(c) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Standing Committee Members, Circuit Committee Members, or Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar. Members of the firms of a board of governors member, standing member, or circuit committee member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in UPL proceedings authorized under these rules without the express consent of the board.(d) Partners, Associates, Employers, or Employees of the Firms of Former Standing Committee Members, Former Circuit Committee Members, or Former Board of Governors Members Precluded From Representing Parties Other Than The Florida Bar . Attorneys in the firms of a former board of governors member, former standing committee member, or former circuit committee member shall not represent any party other than The Florida Bar in UPL proceedings authorized under these rules for 1 year after the former member’s service without the express consent of the board.10-6 PROCEDURES FOR INVESTIGATION***RULE 10-6.2 SUBPOENAS(a) Issuance by Court. Upon receiving a written application of the chair of the standing committee or of a circuit committee or bar counsel alleging facts indicating that a person or entity is or may be practicing law without a license and that the issuance of a subpoena is necessary for the investigation of such unlicensed practice, the clerk of the circuit court in which the committee is located or the clerk of the Supreme Court of Florida shall issue subpoenas in the name, respectively, of the chief judge of the circuit or the chief justice for the attendance of any person and production of books and records before counsel or the investigating circuit committee or any member thereof at the time and place within its circuit designated in such application. Such subpoenas shall be returnable to the circuit court of the residence or place of business of the person subpoenaed. A like subpoena shall issue upon application by any person or entity under investigation.(b) Failure to Comply. [no change]***10-7 PROCEEDINGS BEFORE A REFEREERULE 10-7.1 PROCEEDINGS FOR INJUNCTIVE RELIEF(a) Filing Complaints. [no change](b) Petitions for Injunctive Relief. [no change](c) Proceedings Before the Referee. [no change](d) Referee’s Report.(1) Generally. At the conclusion of the hearing, the referee shall file a written report with the court stating findings of fact, conclusions of law, a statement of costs incurred and recommendations as to the manner in which costs should be taxed as provided in rule 10-7.1(d)(2) elsewhere in this chapter, and a recommendation for final disposition of the cause which may include the imposition of a civil penalty not to exceed $1000 per incident and a recommendation for restitution as provided elsewhere in this chapter. The original record shall be filed with the report. Copies of the referee’s report shall be served upon all parties by the referee at the time it is filed with the court.(2) Costs . The referee shall have discretion to recommend the assessment of costs. Taxable costs of the proceeding shall include only:(A) investigative costs;(B) court reporters’ fees;(C) copy costs;(D) telephone charges;(E) fees for translation services;(F) witness expenses, including travel and out-of-pocket expenses;(G) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of the referee; and(H) travel and out-of-pocket expenses of counsel in the proceedings, including those of the respondent if acting as counsel; and( H I any other costs which may properly be taxed in civil litigation.(3) Restitution . The referee shall have discretion to recommend that the respondent be ordered to pay restitution, which shall be paid before costs. In such instances, the amount of restitution shall be specifically set forth in the referee’s report and shall not exceed the amount paid to respondent by complainant(s). The referee’s report shall also state the name of the complainant(s) to whom restitution is to be made, the amount of restitution to be made, and the date by which it shall be completed. The referee shall have discretion over the timing of payments and over how those payments are to be distributed to multiple complainants. In determining the amount of restitution to be paid to complainant(s), the referee shall consider any documentary evidence that shows the amount paid to respondent by complainant(s) including:(A) cancelled checks; (B) credit card receipts; (C) receipts from respondent; and (D) any other documentation evidencing the amount of payment. The referee shall also have discretion to recommend that restitution shall bear interest at the legal rate provided for judgments in this state. Nothing in this section shall preclude an individual from seeking redress through civil proceedings to recover fees or other damages.( 3 4 ) Stipulated Injunction. Should the parties enter into a stipulated injunction prior to the hearing, the stipulation shall be filed with the referee. The referee may approve the stipulation or reject the stipulation and schedule a hearing as provided elsewhere in these rules. If accepted, the stipulation and original record shall then be filed with the court for final approval of the stipulation and entry of an injunction. A written report as described in rule 10-7.1(d)(1) shall be filed by the referee along with the stipulation. The respondent may agree to pay restitution in the stipulation. In such instances the amount of restitution, to whom it shall be made, how payments are to be made, the date by which it shall be completed, and whether interest as provided elsewhere in this chapter will be paid, shall be specifically set forth in the stipulation.(e) Review by the Supreme Court of Florida.(1) Objections to the report of the referee shall be filed with the court by any party aggrieved, within 30 days after the filing of the report. If the objector desires, a brief or memorandum of law in support of the objections may be filed at the time the objections are filed. Any other party may file a responsive brief or memorandum of law within 20 days of service of the objector’s brief or memorandum of law. The objector may file a reply brief or memorandum of law within 10 days of service of the opposing party’s responsive brief or memorandum of law. Oral argument will be allowed at the court’s discretion and will be governed by the provisions of the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure.(2) Upon the expiration of the time to file objections to the referee’s report, the court shall review the report of the referee, together with any briefs or memoranda of law or objections filed in support of or opposition to such report. After review, the court shall determine as a matter of law whether the respondent has engaged in the unlicensed practice of law, whether the respondent’s activities should be enjoined by appropriate order, whether costs should be awarded, whether restitution should be ordered, and whether further relief shall be granted. Any order of the court that contains an order of restitution shall contain a requirement that the respondent provide a monthly written report to the UPL Department of The Florida Bar detailing the complainant(s) to whom restitution has been made and the amounts paid. In the event respondent fails to pay the restitution as ordered by this court, The Florida Bar is authorized to file a petition for indirect criminal contempt as provided elsewhere in this chapter.(f) Issuance of Preliminary or Temporary Injunction. [no change]RULE 10-7.2 PROCEEDINGS FOR INDIRECT CRIMINAL CONTEMPT (a) Petitions for Indirect Criminal Contempt. Nothing set forth herein shall be construed to prohibit or limit the right of the court to issue a permanent injunction in lieu of or in addition to any punishment imposed for an indirect criminal contempt.(1) Upon receiving a sworn petition of the president, executive director of The Florida Bar, or the chair of the standing committee alleging facts indicating that a person, firm, or corporation is or may be unlawfully practicing law or has failed to pay restitution as provided elsewhere in this chapter, and containing a prayer for a contempt citation, the court may issue an order directed to the respondent, stating the essential allegations charged and requiring the respondent to appear before a referee appointed by the court to show cause why the respondent should not be held in contempt of this court for the unlicensed practice of law or for the failure to pay restitution as ordered. The referee shall be a circuit judge of the state of Florida. The order shall specify the time and place of the hearing, and a reasonable time shall be allowed for preparation of the defense after service of the order on the respondent.(2) [no change](b) Indigency of Respondent. [no change](c) Proceedings Before the Referee. Proceedings before the referee shall be in accordance with the following:(1) [no change](2) [no change](3) [no change](4) [no change](5) [no change](6) At the conclusion of the hearing, the referee shall sign and enter of record a judgment of guilty or not guilty. There shouldbe included in a judgment of guilty a recital of the facts constituting the contempt of which the respondent has been found and adjudicated guilty, and the costs of prosecution, including investigative costs and restitution, if any, shall be included and entered in the judgment rendered against the respondent. The amount of restitution shall be specifically set forth in the judgment and shall not exceed the amount paid to respondent by complainant(s). The judgment shall also state the name of the complainant(s) to whom restitution is to be made, the amount of restitution to be made, and the date by which it shall be completed. The referee shall have discretion over the timing of payments, over how those payments are to be distributed to multiple complainant(s), and whether restitution shall bear interest at the legal rate provided for judgments in this state. In determining the amount of restitution to be paid to complainant(s), the referee shall consider any documentary evidence that shows the amount paid to respondent by complainant(s), including cancelled checks, credit card receipts, receipts from respondent, and any other documentation evidencing the amount of payment. Nothing in this section shall preclude an individual from seeking redress through civil proceedings to recover fees or other damages.(7) [no change](d) Review by the Supreme Court of Florida. [no change](e) Fine or Punishment. [no change](f) Costs and Restitution . The court may also award costs and restitution.***10-9 ADVISORY OPINIONSRULE 10-9.1 PROCEDURES FOR ISSUANCE OF ADVISORY OPINIONS ON THE UNLICENSED PRACTICE OF LAW(a) Definitions. – [no change](b) Requests for Advisory Opinions. A petitioner requesting a formal advisory opinion concerning activities that may constitute the unlicensed practice of law shall do so by sending the request in writing addressed to The UPL Department, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2300. The request for an advisory opinion shall state in detail all to the extent practicable the operative facts upon which the request for opinion is based and contain the name and address of the petitioner. The request shall be reviewed by UPL staff counsel. If the request complies with the requirements of the rule as stated herein, the request will be placed on the agenda for the next scheduled meeting of the committee. At that meeting, the committee will determine whether to accept the request, such determination being within the discretion of the committee. Should the committee accept the request, a public hearing as provided in rule 10-9.1(f) shall be scheduled.(c) Limitations on Opinions. – [no change](d) Services of Voluntary Counsel. – [no change](e) Conflict of Interest. [no change](f) Notice, Appearance, and Service. – [no change](g) Service and Judicial Review of Proposed Advisory Opinions. – [no change]***CHAPTER 14. GRIEVANCE MEDIATION AND FEE ARBITRATION RULE14-1. JURISDICTION AND VENUE ESTABLISHMENTRULE 14-1.1 JURISDICTION ESTABLISHMENTThe Florida Bar Grievance Mediation and Fee Arbitration Program (hereinafter “the program”) is hereby established as a means to empower complainants and respondents to resolve disputes without the involvement of formal disciplinary processes.RULE 14-1.2 JURISDICTION(a) Written Request Required Fee Arbitration . Circuit arbitration committees The program shall have jurisdiction to resolve disputes between members of The Florida Bar or between a member of The Florida Bar and a client or clients over a fee paid, charged, or claimed for legal services rendered by a member of The Florida Bar when the parties to the dispute agree to arbitrate hereunder either by written contract or by a request for arbitration signed by all parties , or as a condition of probation or as a part of a discipline sanction as authorized elsewhere in these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.(b) Pending Civil Action. Circuit arbitration committees The program shall not have jurisdiction to resolve disputes involving matters in which a court has taken jurisdiction to determine and award a reasonable fee to a party or that involve fees charged that constitute a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, unless specifically referred to the program circuit arbitration committee by the court or by bar counsel , respectively.(c) Relationship Required. Circuit arbitration committees have jurisdiction to resolve disputes between members of The Florida Bar or between a member of The Florida Bar and a client or clients only.(d) Authority to Decline Exercise of Jurisdiction. The chair of a circuit arbitration committee or the chair of a panel of a circuit arbitration committee, with the consent of the chair of the circuit arbitration committee, The program shall have authority to decline jurisdiction to resolve any particular dispute by reason of its complexity and protracted hearing characteristics.(b) Grievance Mediation . The program shall have jurisdiction to mediate the issues in a disciplinary file referred to the program in which the public interest is satisfied by the resolution of the private rights of the parties to the mediation. The program shall not have jurisdiction to resolve the issues in a disciplinary file if any issue involved in that file must remain for resolution within the disciplinary process.RULE 14-1.2 VENUE (PLACE OF HEARING)Fee dispute resolutions shall be determined by a fee arbitration committee located in the circuit where the member of The Florida Bar maintains a principal office, where the attorney performed a substantial amount of the legal services, or where the parties agree the matter should be arbitrated.RULE 14-1.3 RULES AUTHORITY OF BOARD OF GOVERNORSThe board of governors shall appoint a standing committee to administer the program and the board may adopt policies for implementation thereof.RULE 14-1.4 APPLICATION OF RULES AND STATUTESEach party to an arbitration proceeding initiated under these rules shall be deemed to have consented to the application of t T he Florida Arbitration Code (chapter 682, Florida Statutes), shall apply to arbitrations conducted under this chapter except as modified by or in conflict with these rules.The Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators shall apply to proceedings under this chapter unless otherwise stated herein or in conflict with the provisions of this rule or the Rules of Professional Conduct. A program mediator shall not report the misconduct of another member of The Florida Bar if the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators and applicable law preclude such report.14-2. STANDING COMMITTEERULE 14-2.1 GENERALLY(a) Appointment of Members; Quorum. The board of governors shall appoint a 9-member standing committee on grievance mediation and fee arbitration , not less than one-third of whom shall be nonlawyers. comprised of:(1) 6 lawyers who are supreme court certified mediators;(2) 3 nonlawyers who are supreme court certified mediators;(3) 6 lawyers who are certified as arbitrators under this chapter; and (4) 3 nonlawyers who are certified as arbitrators under this chapter.The board of governors will appoint a chair and vice-chair of the committee from the members listed above. A majority of members of the committee constitutes a quorum. The lawyer members of the committee shall have been members of The Florida Bar for at least 5 years.(b) Terms. All members shall be appointed for 3-year terms, each term commencing on July 1 of the year of appointment and ending on June 30 of the third year thereafter. Terms shall be staggered so that 4 members of the committee shall be appointed each year. No committee member may serve for more than 2 consecutive full terms.(c) Duties. The duties of the standing committee include: shall adminster the program, certify mediators and arbitrators for the program, promulgate necessary standards, forms, and documents, and make recommendations, as necessary, to the board of governors for changes in the program.(1) prescribing uniform forms and rules of procedure for circuit arbitration committees;(2) recommending to the board of governors amendments to this rule;(3) establishing additional circuit arbitration committees where needed;(4) giving advice concerning fee arbitration matters to officers, the board of governors, staff, sections, or committees of The Florida Bar as requested or required;(5) gathering and maintaining vital statistical information from the circuit arbitration committees for use by the standing committee, board of governors, or other appropriate bodies;(6) promoting the system; and(7) approving administrative fees for each circuit arbitration committee.14-3. CIRCUIT ARBITRATION COMMITTEESRULE 14-3.1 GENERALLY(a) Membership. The circuit arbitration committees shall consist of not less than 3 members, approved by the board of governors, who practice law or reside within the circuit. The size of a circuit arbitration committee may be increased as the chair of each committee deems necessary. At least one-third of the membership of each committee shall be nonlawyers. The lawyer members of the committee shall have been members of The Florida Bar for at least 5 years.(b) Nomination and Appointment. Voluntary bar association presidents within each circuit and the Florida Council of Bar Association Presidents may tender names of prospective members of the circuit arbitration committees to the board of governors member of such circuit for recommendation to the board of governors, which shall appoint the members. The board of governors member for each circuit shall designate a chair and vice-chair for each circuit arbitration committee.(c) Terms . Terms of service shall be for 1 year, beginning July 1 and ending the following June 30, with no member serving more than 3 consecutive terms. The expiration of the term of a member shall not disqualify that member from concluding any matter pending before the member. Any member may be removed by the board of governors.14-3. CERTIFICATION OF PROGRAM MEDIATORS AND ARBITRATORSRULE 14-3.1 APPLICATION REQUIRED(a) Applications. Persons wishing to become program mediators or arbitrators shall apply to the committee for its review and certification. The committee shall promulgate standards and forms for certification hereunder. Membership in The Florida Bar shall not be required for certification.(b) CLE Credit for Service. Members of The Florida Bar who are program mediators and arbitrators shall be entitled to a maximum of 5 hours of CLE credit in each reporting period in the area of ethics for service in the program as provided in the policies adopted under this chapter.14-4. INSTITUTION OF PROCEEDINGSRULE 14-4.1 GENERALLY ARBITRATION PROCEEDINGS(a) Consent . All arbitration proceedings shall be instituted by the filing of a written consent to arbitration under these rules either by written contract or by the consent form prescribed herein in the policies adopted under the authority of this chapter and signed by each party to the controversy. Proceedings hereunder may also be instituted by the terms of a disciplinary sanction imposed or a condition of probation entered in accord with these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar. Each of such parties shall provide the committee with a concise statement of that party’s position, including the amount claimed or in controversy, on the form prescribed and authorized by the standing committee. Copies of the rules and consent forms will be supplied to the parties by the circuit arbitration committee. (b) Attachments . If there is a written contract regarding fees between the parties, a copy of that written contract shall accompany the request or submission.RULE 14-4.2 GRIEVANCE MEDIATION PROCEEDINGS(a) Referral by Bar Counsel. Bar counsel, with the consent of the parties, may refer any file to the program that meets the criteria established by any policies adopted under the authority of this rule.(b) Referral by Grievance Committees. Grievance committees, with concurrence of bar counsel and consent of the parties, may refer any file to the program that meets the criteria established by the policies adopted under the authority of this chapter.(c) Referral by Board of Governors. The board of governors, upon review of a file referred to it as authorized elsewhere under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, may refer same to the program if it meets the criteria established by the policies adopted under the authority of this chapter.(d) Referral by Referees. Referees, with concurrence of The Florida Bar, may refer any file to the program that meets the criteria established by the policies adopted under the authority of this chapter. Concurrence of The Florida Bar requires agreement of bar counsel and the member of the board of governors designated to review the disciplinary matter at issue.(e) Referral by Order of Supreme Court of Florida. The Supreme Court of Florida may order referral of any file to the program that meets the criteria established by the policies adopted under the authority of this chapter.14-5. RULES OF PROCEDURE EFFECT OF AGREEMENT TO MEDIATE OR ARBITRATE AND FAILURE TO COMPLYRULE 14-5.1 EFFECT OF REFERRAL TO MEDIATION AND FAILURE TO COMPLY(a) Closure of Disciplinary File. Upon referral for mediation of the issues involved in a disciplinary file, the disciplinary file shall be closed without the entry of a sanction and shall remain closed except as provided in subdivision (b), below:(b) Effect of Respondent’s Failure to Attend or Comply . It shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to attend an agreed-upon mediation conference without good cause. Likewise, it shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to fully comply with the terms of a written mediation agreement without good cause.(c) Effect of Complainant’s Failure to Attend . If a file referred for mediation is not fully resolved by reason of a complainant’s failure to attend without good cause, the disciplinary file based thereon may remain closed.RULE 14-5.2 EFFECT OF AGREEMENT TO ARBITRATE AND FAILURE TO COMPLY(a) Closure of Disciplinary File. A disciplinary file that involves only fee issues shall be closed without the entry of a sanction upon the entry of an agreement to arbitrate.(b) Effect of Respondent’s Failure to Attend or Comply . It shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to attend an agreed-upon arbitration conference without good cause. Likewise, it shall be a violation of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar for a respondent to fail to fully comply with the terms of an arbitration award without good cause.(c) Effect of Complainant’s or Other Opposing Party’s Failure to Attend . If a file referred for arbitration is not fully resolved by reason of a complainant’s or other opposing party’s failure to attend without good cause, the disciplinary file based thereon may remain closed.RULE 14-5.1 CONFIDENTIALITYAll records, documents, files, proceedings, and hearings pertaining to fee arbitration under these rules shall be made available, upon inquiry, to anyone.14-6 NATURE AND ENFORCEMENT OF AWARDRULE 14- 5.2 6.1 BINDING NATURE(a) Binding Determination. The parties to a n arbitration proceeding under these rules shall be bound by the determination of the circuit arbitration committee panel terms of the arbitration award subject to those rights and procedures to set aside or modify the award provided by chapter 682, Florida Statutes , or by the terms of an agreement reached in mediation.(b) Enforcement of Determination. In addition to any remedy authorized in this chapter, Any an arbitration award rendered may be enforced by a court of competent jurisdiction as provided in chapter 682, Florida Statutes.14-7 IMMUNITY AND CONFIDENTIALITYRULE 14- 5.3 7.1 IMMUNITY AND CONFIDENTIALITY(a) Immunity. The members of the standing committee and circuit arbitration committees, mediators, arbitrators, as well as staff persons of The Florida Bar, and appointed voluntary counsel assisting those the committee s , mediators, and arbitrators, shall have absolute immunity from civil liability for all acts in the course of their official duties.(b) Confidentiality of Arbitration Proceedings and Records. All records, documents, files, proceedings, and hearings pertaining to fee arbitration under these rules shall be made available, upon inquiry, to anyone. Provided, however, that an arbitrator’s mental processes shall not be subject to discovery and a panel of arbitrators may retire into executive session to consider the issues raised and to reach a decision as to an award.(c) Confidentiality of Mediation Proceedings and Records. All records, documents, files, and proceedings pertaining to mediation under this chapter shall be made available only as provided in the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators and applicable law.RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR FEE ARBITRATION PROCEEDINGS PROCEDURAL RULESRULE I. PREAMBLEThe following rules are those standards by which circuit arbitration committees the program must conduct their proceedings in fee arbitration matters.RULE II. SELECTION OF ARBITRATORSA. (a) Referral to Arbitrators. Upon the proper filing of an agreement to arbitrate or request for and notice of arbitration, or upon entry of an order by the Supreme Court of Florida requiring arbitration, the matter shall be referred by the circuit arbitration committee chair to 1 member of the circuit arbitration committee staff of The Florida Bar to an arbitrator who is a lawyer who shall act as sole arbitrator when the amount in controversy is $2,500 or less. If the amount in controversy exceeds $2,500, the circuit arbitration committee chair staff shall refer the matter to a hearing panel of 3 circuit arbitration committee members arbitrators, 1 of whom shall be designated panel chair for the case. Also, the parties may at any time stipulate to the use of 1 arbitrator to hear the case even when the amount in controversy exceeds $2,500. Upon request of 1 of the parties, and in the sole discretion of the circuit arbitration standing committee chair, an extraordinary case involving $2,500 or less may be heard by a 3-member panel. All 3-member panels shall consist of at least 1 nonlawyer and 1 lawyer. This requirement may be waived by the parties. Also, upon request of 1 of the parties or in extraordinary circumstances, and in the sole discretion of the circuit arbitration standing committee chair, any case involving $2,500 or less may be heard by a nonlawyer arbitrator.B. (b) Eligibility to Serve. It shall be the obligation of any member of a circuit arbitration committee arbitrator designated as a sole arbitrator or panel member to disclose to the circuit arbitration committee chair any reason why the member arbitrator cannot ethically or conscientiously serve. When a n member arbitrator declines or is unable to serve, the circuit arbitration committee chair staff shall designate another member eligible to serve arbitrator. The circuit arbitration committee chair has the authority to remove a sole arbitrator or panel member from hearing a particular matter if, in the judgment of the chair, the member should not serve.C. (c) Postponements. If , at the time set for hearing by a panel, the 3 all members of the panel are not present, the panel chair, with the consent of the parties, may postpone the hearing or proceed with fewer than 3 members.D. (d) Death or Inability to Serve. If any member of the panel dies or becomes unable to continue to serve while the matter is pending, but before an award has been made, a substitute panel member shall be appointed by the panel chair unless the parties consent to proceed with the hearing. If a substitute panel member is appointed, the member shall review the evidence admitted and recorded in the proceedings, if recorded. If not recorded, the review shall consist of an examination of evidence admitted and oral summary by the panel chair followed by argument thereon from the parties.E. (e) Powers of Arbitrators. The members of the circuit arbitration committee selected as a Arbitrators of any dispute shall be vested with all the powers and shall assume all the duties granted and imposed upon arbitrators in accordance with chapter 682, Florida Statutes.F. (f) Time. The panel or the sole arbitrator assigned shall hold the hearing within 45 days after receipt of the assignment and shall render the award within 10 days after the close of the hearing, unless extended by the chair of the circuit arbitration standing committee for good cause. Failure of an arbitrator or panel to comply with these time requirements shall not otherwise divest the arbitrator or panel of the authority to conduct proceedings authorized by these policies and applicable rules.RULE III. RECORD OF PROCEEDINGSAny party may provide, at the party’s cost, the service of a stenographer to record the proceedings. If the proceedings are transcribed, the arbitrators shall be promptly provided with a copy that shall be open to inspection by all of the parties to the arbitration. By stipulation of the parties, the proceedings may be recorded by tape recorder or other electronic means.RULE IV. HEARINGSA. (a) Setting and Notice of Hearing. The chair of the panel or the sole arbitrator, as the case may be, shall coordinate with the parties and panel members and thereafter fix a time and place for the hearing and shall cause written notice thereof to be served personally or by registered or certified mail on the parties to the arbitration at the address stated on the consent to arbitration form not less than 10 days before the hearing. A party’s appearance at a scheduled hearing shall constitute a waiver of any deficiency in the notice of hearing.B. (b) Absence of Party. The arbitration may proceed in the absence of a party who, after notice, fails to attend or to obtain a postponement from the panel chair or sole arbitrator. Postponement , however, shall only be granted upon good cause shown. Despite the absence of a party or parties, no award shall be made without the submission of evidence to support the claim.C. (c) Representation by Counsel. Each party has the right to be represented by counsel at any arbitration hearing.D. (d) Presentation of Evidence. If all parties to the controversy so agree, they may waive an evidentiary hearing and may submit their positions and contentions in writing, together with exhibits, if any, to the arbitrators who shall render a final decision based on the information before them within 10 days of the receipt of such writings and exhibits. The arbitrators shall require all parties and witnesses to be sworn before they testify. The arbitrators, if they so desire, may request opening statements and prescribe the order of proof. In any event, all parties shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity for the presentation of any evidence. Depositions shall be allowed only for the perpetuation of testimony. All other pre-hearing discovery is prohibited. The procedures for subpoenas and witness attendance shall be as prescribed in section 682.08, Florida Statutes as amended. Subpoenas may be enforced as provided in section 682.08, Florida Statutes, or as elsewhere provided in chapter 3 of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.E. (e) Right of Party to Attend. All parties shall have the right to attend all hearings. The exclusion of other persons or witnesses shall be within the discretion of the arbitrators.F. (f) Chair to Presid e ing Arbitrator . The arbitrators shall select 1 of their members as chair. The chair of the panel or the sole arbitrator shall preside at the hearing and shall rule on the admission and exclusion of evidence and on questions of procedure, and shall exercise all powers relating to the conduct of the hearing. The hearing should be informal in nature without strict observance of the rules of evidence or the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure.G. (g) Factors to Consider Regarding Reasonable Fees. In reaching their decision, the arbitrators may consider all factors they deem relevant, including but not limited to the intention and understanding of the parties at the time the representation was undertaken as well as those factors for determining the reasonableness of a fee enumerated in rules 4-1.5(b) and (c), Rules of Professional Conduct.RULE V. CLOSING OF HEARINGSThe arbitrators shall specifically inquire of all parties whether they have any further evidence to submit in whatever form. If the answer is in the negative, the hearings shall be closed. The circuit arbitration committee files shall be preserved for a period of 1 year from the date of submission of the award to the parties. Upon closure of the hearing, the arbitrator(s) may retire into executive session to consider the issues raised and reach a decision as to an award. The mental processes of the arbitrator(s) employed in reaching an award shall not be subject to discovery nor use in any proceeding.RULE VI. THE AWARDThe decision of the arbitrators shall be expressed in a written award on the form prescribed by the standing committee, signed by the arbitrators, which shall include a brief explanation of the basis of the award and shall be submitted to the parties. If there is a dissent, it shall be signed separately but the award shall be binding if signed by a majority of the arbitrators. Unless the agreement to arbitrate or request for and notice of arbitration provides otherwise, the arbitrators may grant any lawful relief, including specific performance. An award may also be entered upon the consent of all the parties. Once the award is signed, the hearing may not be reopened except upon consent of all parties and the chair or sole arbitrator. The award may be confirmed, set aside, modified, or corrected only in accordance with chapter 682, Florida Statutes, as amended.RULE VII. ENFORCEMENT STANDARDS FOR CERTIFICATION AND TRAININGIf an award is made to a nonlawyer client and the respondent member of The Florida Bar refuses to comply, the chair of the circuit arbitration committee shall make every reasonable effort to find an attorney member of the committee or other volunteer member of The Florida Bar at no cost to the client, other than actual litigation expenses, to represent such client in enforcing or defending such award in accordance with chapter 682, Florida Statutes as amended. Fee arbitration awards cannot be enforced or set aside without a court proceeding pursuant to the Florida Arbitration Code. Such proceedings begin with a petition or application to the appropriate court to confirm or set aside the award.(a) Eligibility. Persons eligible to be program arbitrators are: (1) retired judges and justices of the courts of the State of Florida; (2) persons who were members of circuit fee arbitration committees at the time of or prior to the merger of the grievance mediation and fee arbitration programs; (3) persons who have served on a circuit grievance committee for 1 year or more; and (4) any other person who, in the opinion of the committee, possesses the requisite education, training, or certification in alternative dispute resolution to be a program arbitrator. If an applicant is a member of The Florida Bar, such member must have been a member for a minimum of 5 years, be a member in good standing, and have no pending recommendation of minor misconduct or finding of probable cause to be eligible for appointment as a program arbitrator. (b) Training. Prior to being certified as program arbitrators, applicants for program arbitrator who have not served as an arbitrator in formal arbitration proceedings in the 3 years prior to application, or served 1 year as a grievance committee member, shall attend an orientation conference at which persons experienced in bar disciplinary matters shall discuss disciplinary procedures. (c) Certification. The committee may certify applicants as program arbitrators if they meet the eligibility requirements stated above, have completed the training set forth in these policies, have been recommended for certification by the program arbitrator with whom the applicant participated in the co-arbitration required by the training provision of these policies, and have agreed to accept at least 2 referrals per calendar year. The committee may decline to certify applicants who: (1) do not meet the eligibility requirements set forth above; (2) do not possess the required training; or (3) have been found guilty of, pled to, or been disciplined for misconduct that, in the opinion of the committee, renders those persons inappropriate for service as program arbitrators. (d) Removal of Certification. A certified arbitrator shall not receive additional referrals where probable cause has been found against the arbitrator until the case has been disposed of. The standing committee may revoke certification of a program arbitrator for any reason that the committee might use to deny initial certification, and for any other reason that the committee believes would render a program arbitrator unfit. (e) Reimbursement of Expenses. Program arbitrators shall not be compensated for time devoted to or travel incurred in connection with an arbitration conducted hereunder. Program arbitrators may be reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses that include, but are not limited to: court reporter fees; telephone calls; photocopying fees (at a maximum of $.25 per page); and translation services.RULE VIII. DEATH OR INCOMPETENCE OF A PARTYIn the event of the death or adjudication of incompetency of a party to the arbitration proceedings during the course of arbitration but prior to the rendering of a decision, the proceeding shall abate upon the suggestion of death of a party or notice of adjudication of incompetency of a party to the chair, unless the personal representative or the guardian of the party consents to go forward. In the event of death or incompetence of a party after the close of the proceedings but prior to a decision, the decision rendered shall be binding upon the heirs, administrators, or executors of the deceased and on the estate and guardian of the incompetent.FLORIDA BAR GRIEVANCE MEDIATION PROGRAM POLICIESRULE I. ADOPTION OF POLICIESPursuant to the authority of rule 3-8 chapter 14 of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, the board of governors hereby adopts The Florida Bar Grievance Mediation Program Policies (hereinafter “policies”).II. Grievance Mediation Program Committee.A. Creation.There is hereby created a Grievance Mediation Program Committee (hereinafter “committee”) that shall be composed of, at the time of their appointment:1. 3 members of the board of governors;2. 3 lawyers who are supreme court certified mediators and who are not members of the board of governors at the time of their appointment; and 3. 3 non-lawyers who are supreme court certified mediators.B. Appointment and Terms.Three members of the committee shall be appointed each year by the president-elect, for 3-year terms. The terms shall commence July 1.C. Duties of Committee.The committee shall administer the mediation program, certify mediators for the program, promulgate necessary forms anddocuments, and make recommendations, as necessary, to the board for changes in the mediation program.The committee shall maintain a list of program mediators, listing the program mediators by judicial circuit and, where appropriate, by each county therein.RULE II I . PROGRAM MEDIATORS.A. (a) Eligibility. Persons eligible to be program mediators are:1. (1) Supreme Court of Florida certified mediators;2. (2) retired judges and justices of the courts of the State of Florida; and (3) persons who were certified program mediators at or before the merger of the grievance mediation and fee arbitration programs; and3. (4) any other person who, in the opinion of the committee, possesses the requisite education, training, or certification in alternative dispute resolution to be a program mediator.If an applicant is a member of the bar, such member must be a member in good standing and with no pending recommendation of minor misconduct or finding of probable cause to be eligible for appointment as a program mediator.B. (b) TrainingPrior to being certified as program mediators, A a pplicants for program mediator who are Supreme Court of Florida certified mediators and have participated in at least 1 mediation s in the 5 years prior to application shall attend an orientation conference at which persons experienced in bar disciplinary matters shall discuss disciplinary procedures. Applicants for program mediator who are Supreme Court of Florida certified mediators but have not participated in at least 1 mediation s in the 5 years prior to application shall attend an orientation conference at which persons experienced in bar disciplinary matters shall discuss disciplinary procedures . In addition the applicants for program mediator who have not participated in mediations in the 5 years prior to application and shall participate in 1 co-mediation under this program prior to being designated certified as a program mediator. All other applicants for program mediator shall attend an orientation conference at which persons experienced in bar disciplinary matters shall discuss disciplinary procedures . In addition these applicants for program mediator may , shall observe 2 mediations under this program and participate in 1 other mediation as a co-mediator prior to being designated certified as a program mediator.C. (c) Certification.The committee may certify applicants as program mediators if they meet the eligibility requirements stated above, have completed the training set forth in these policies, have been recommended for certification by the program mediator with whom the applicant participated in the co-mediation required by the training provision of these policies, and have agreed to accept at least 2 referrals per calendar year.The committee may decline to certify applicants who:1. (1) do not meet the eligibility requirements set forth above;2. (2) do not possess the required training; or3. (3) have been found guilty of, plead to, or been disciplined for misconduct that, in the opinion of the committee, renders those persons inappropriate for service as program mediators.D. (d) Removal of Certification.A n approved certified mediator shall not receive additional referrals where probable cause has been found against the mediator, until the case has been disposed of. The committee may revoke certification of a program mediator for any reason that the committee might use to deny initial certification, and for any other reason that the committee believes would render a program mediator unfit.E. (e) Reimbursement of Expenses.Program mediators shall not be compensated for time devoted to and travel incurred in connection with a mediation conducted under the mediation program. Program mediators may be reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses that include, but are not limited to: telephone calls; photocopying fees (at a maximum of $.25 per page); and translation services.F. CLER Credit.A program mediator who participates in mediation or co-mediation under this program may request and receive 1 hour of continuing legal education credit in the area of ethics and professionalism for each hour devoted to the mediation(s), provided the maximum amount of credit received shall not exceed 5 hours in a CLER reporting cycle. RULE IV III. GUIDELINES FOR REFERRALS.No referral to mediation may be offered if any aspect of the matter must remain for resolution within the discipline system.To assist those making referrals these factors should be considered:1. (1) the severity of the alleged misconduct;2. (2) whether dishonesty is involved;3. (3) whether a pattern of possible misconduct is present;4. (4) the nature of the ethical duty involved and whether the duty may yet be fulfilled;5. (5) the public interest and protection thereof; and6. (6) the interest of the complainant, the respondent and any third parties that are involved.The following types of disciplinary cases are illustrative of disciplinary cases that may be considered for mediation:1. (1) alleged refusal of a lawyer to timely return a clients file or copies thereof;2. (2) alleged refusal of a lawyer to release a lien on a clients recovery in a case in which the lawyer has been succeeded by another counsel;3. (3) alleged refusal of a lawyer to properly withdraw from representation upon discharge by the client;4. (4) alleged failure of a lawyer to conclude legal representation by failure to prepare an essential dispositive document;5. (5) alleged failure of a lawyer to comply with a letter of protection issued on behalf of a client;6. (6) alleged failure of a lawyer to adequately communicate to a client not causing substantial harm to the client;7. (7) alleged neglect by a lawyer which does not cause substantial harm;8. (8) an alleged isolated instance of incompetence by a lawyer that is not part of a pattern of incompetence, when the act is not committed in conjunction with any other rule violation, and the lawyer has not been the subject of prior disciplinary sanction for incompetence; and9. (9) any other matter involving the private rights of the complainant and respondent wherein the public interest is satisfied by a resolution that dismisses the disciplinary case without further B b ar action.This list of illustrations is not intended to be an exclusive list, but rather is intended as a guide for those making referrals to the mediation program.RULE I V. PROCEDURES.A. (a) Co-mediation.Co-mediation shall not be required, but may be utilized under appropriate circumstances. When co-mediation is employed, it is preferred that only 1 of the program mediators be a member of the B b ar.B. (b) Records.A record of all referrals and the result of each shall be maintained in accordance with The Florida Bar’s record retention policy.C. (c) Appearances at Mediation Conferences.It is the policy of the B b ar that persons should personally attend mediation conferences. However, if special circumstances exist and the program mediator agrees, parties may be allowed to attend by telephone or video connection.D. (d) Site of Mediation Conference.Unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties and the program mediator(s), the mediation conference shall be held at the office of a program mediator.E. (e) Right to Counsel.Counsel shall be permitted at mediation conferences only if approved by the parties and agreed to by the program mediator(s).F. (f) Time for Mediation.If the program mediator(s) is(are) able to serve, the initial mediation conference shall be scheduled within 45 days of referral of the file. This time may be extended by agreement of the parties and the program mediator(s). Failure to meet this time requirement shall not divest the program mediator(s) of the authority to proceed otherwise.(g) Report to The Florida Bar. At the conclusion of a mediation the program mediator shall report to the committee, limited to:(1) reference to the matter by identification of the disciplinary file to which it pertains;(2) reference to whether the matter settled without resort to a formal mediation conference;(3) whether a formal mediation conference was held and, if so, when;(4) the parties who attended and those who did not;(5) whether the mediation resulted in complete settlement, partial settlement, or impasse; and(6) in instances where disciplinary violations of a sort not proper for mediation are divulged or discovered, or a party to the mediation appears to the program mediator to be incompetent to participate in the mediation, a statement that the matter is no longer proper for mediation, without elaboration as to why.RULE V I . COST OF MEDIATION.There shall be no fee charged to any party to mediation conducted under this program.***CHAPTER 1717-1 GENERALLY***RULE 17-1.2 DEFINITIONS(a) Authorized House Counsel. An “authorized house counsel” is any person who:(1) is a member in good standing of the entity governing the practice of law of each state (other than Florida), territory, or the District of Columbia in which the member is licensed;(2) is not subject to a disciplinary proceeding or an outstanding order of reprimand, censure or disbarment, permanent or temporary, for professional misconduct by the bar or courts of any jurisdiction at the time of application for registration under this chapter ;(3) is not subject to a disciplinary proceeding;( 3 4 ) has not been permanently denied admission to practice before the bar of any jurisdiction based upon such person’s character or fitness at the time of application for registration under this chapter ;( 4 5 ) agrees to abide by the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar (including, without limitation, rules 6-10.1 et seq.) and submit to the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Florida for disciplinary purposes;( 5 6 ) is , at the date of application for registration under this rule, residing in Florida and exclusively employed by a business organization located in the state of Florida or relocating to the state of Florida in furtherance of such employment within 6 months of such application under this chapter and receives or shall receive compensation for activities performed for that business organization;( 6 7 ) has complied with rule 17-1.4.(b) Business Organization. [no change]***RULE 17-1.4 REGISTRATIONa) Filing with The Florida Bar. The following shall be filed with The Florida Bar by an individual seeking to be certified as authorized house counsel:(1) [no change(2) a sworn statement by the registrant that the registrant:(A) [no change](B) [no change](C) is not subject to a disciplinary proceeding or outstanding order of reprimand, censure, or disbarment, permanent or temporary, for professional misconduct by the bar or courts of any jurisdiction at the time of application for registration under this chapter ;(3) [no change](4) [no change](5) [no change](b) Review by The Florida Bar. [no change](c) Certification by Court. [no change](d) Annual Registration Renewal . The registration pursuant to this section shall be annual in a manner consistent with that applicable to an attorney licensed to practice in the state of Florida including the annual fee therefor as if such authorized house counsel was so licensed, provided, however, such renewal shall include a statement that the certificates filed under subdivision 17-1.4(a)(1)-(3) with the initial registration are current and valid the registrant is in good standing in all states or United States territories in which licensed and is not subject to any disciplinary proceedings.***RULE 17-1.7 TRANSITION IMMUNITY FROM PROSECUTION(a) Prior Commission of Unlicensed Practice of Law. The commission of the unlicensed practice of law by an applicant for registration as an authorized house counsel under this rule prior to the effective date of this rule shall not be grounds for the denial of registration of such applicant if application for registration is made within 6 months of the effective date of this rule.(b) Immunity From Prosecution. An authorized house counsel who has been duly registered under this rule shall not be subject to prosecution for the unlicensed practice of law for acting as counsel to a business organization prior to the effective date of this rule. ( 2) Misleading or Deceptive Factual Statements. [no change](3) Descriptive Statements. [no change](4) Prohibited Visual and Verbal Portrayals. Visual or verbal descriptions, depictions, or portrayals of persons, things, or events must be objectively relevant to the selection of an attorney and shall not be deceptive, misleading, or manipulative.(5) Advertising Areas of Practice. [no change](6) Stating or Implying Florida Bar Approval. [no change](c) General Regulations Governing Content of Advertisements.(1) Use of Illustrations. All illustrations used in advertisements shall present information that is directly related and objectively relevant to a viewer’s possible need for legal services in a specific type of matter. Such illustrations shall be still pictures or drawings and shall contain no features that are likely to deceive, mislead, or confuse the viewer.(2) Fields of Practice. [no change](3) Communication of Fields of Practice. A lawyer may communicate the fact that the lawyer does or does not practice in particular fields of law. A lawyer shall not state or imply that the lawyer is “certified,” “board certified,” or a “ specialist ” except that a s follows: (A) Florida Bar Certified Lawyers. A lawyer who complies with the Florida certification plan as set forth in chapter 6, Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, or who is certified by an organization whose specialty certification program has been accredited by the American Bar Association may inform the public and other lawyers of the lawyer’s certified areas of legal practice . and Such communications should identify The Florida Bar as the certifying organization and may state in communications to the public that the lawyer is “certified,” “board certified,” or a “specialist in (area of certification).”(B) Lawyers Certified by Organizations Other Than The Florida Bar or Another State Bar. A lawyer certified by an organization other than The Florida Bar or another state bar may inform the public and other lawyers of the lawyer’s certified areas(s) of legal practice by stating that the lawyer is “certified,” “board certified,” or a “specialist in (area of certification” if: (i) the organization’s program has been accredited by The Florida Bar as provided elsewhere in these Rules Regulating The Florida Bar; and, (ii) the member includes the full name of the organization in all communications pertaining to such certification. (C) Certification by Other State Bars. A lawyer certified by another state bar may inform the public and other lawyers of the lawyer’s certified area(s) of legal practice and may state in communications to the public that the lawyer is “certified,” “board certified,” or a “specialist in (area of certification)” if: (i) the state bar program grants certification on the basis of standards reasonably comparable to the standards of the Florida certification plan as set forth in chapter 6, Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, as determined by The Florida Bar; and, (ii) the member includes the name of the state bar in all communications pertaining to such certification.(4) Disclosure of Liability For Expenses Other Than Fees. [no change](5) Period for Which Advertised Fee Must be Honored. [no change](6) Firm Name. [no change](7) Payment by Nonadvertising Lawyer. [no change](8) Referrals to Another Lawyer. [no change](9) Payment for Recommendations; Lawyer Referral Service Fees. [no change](10) Language of Required Statements. [no change](11) Appearance of Required Statements . Any words or statements required by this subchapter to appear in an advertisement or direct mail communication must be clearly legible if written or intelligible if spoken aloud. If the words or statements appear in text, then the text also must be no smaller than one-quarter the size of the largest type otherwise appearing in the advertisement.(11) (12) Permissible Content of Advertisements. [no further change]CommentThis rule governs all communications about a lawyer’s services, including advertising permitted by this subchapter. Whatever means are used to make known a lawyer’s services, statements about them must be truthful. This precludes any material misrepresentation or misleading omission, such as where a lawyer states or implies certification or recognition as a specialist other than in accordance with this rule, where a lawyer implies that any court, tribunal, or other public body or official can be improperly influenced, or where a lawyer advertises a particular fee or a contingency fee without disclosing whether the client will also be liable for costs. Another example of a misleading omission is an advertisement for a law firm that states that all the firm’s lawyers are juris doctors but does not disclose that a juris doctorate is a law degree rather than a medical degree of some sort and that virtually any law firm in the United States can make the same claim. Although this rule permits lawyers to list the jurisdictions and courts to which they are admitted, it also would be misleading for a lawyer who does not list other jurisdictions or courts to state that the lawyer is a member of The Florida Bar. Standing by itself, that otherwise truthful statement implies falsely that the lawyer possesses a qualification not common to virtually all lawyers practicing in Florida. The latter 2 examples of misleading omissions also are examples of unfair advertising.Prohibited information [no change]Communication of fields of practiceThis rule permits a lawyer or law firm to indicate areas of practice in communications about the lawyer’s or law firm’s services, such as in a telephone directory or other advertising, provided the advertising lawyer or law firm actually practices in those areas of law at the time the advertisement is disseminated. If a lawyer practices only in certain fields, or will not accept matters except in such fields, the lawyer is permitted so to indicate. However, no lawyer who is not certified by The Florida Bar or an organization having substantially the same standards accredited by The Florida Bar may be described to the public as a “specialist” or as “specializing . , ” “certified,” “board certified,” or any variation of similar import.Paying others to recommend a lawyer [no change]Required disclosures Required disclosures would be ineffective if they appeared in an advertisement so briefly or minutely as to be overlooked or ignored. Thus the type size to be used for required disclosures is specified to ensure that the disclosures will be conspicuous.RULE 4-7.3 ADVERTISEMENTS IN THE PUBLIC PRINT MEDIA (a) Generally. [no change] (b) Disclosure Statement. Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, all advertisements other than lawyer referral service advertisements shall contain the following disclosure: “The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements. Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience.” Lawyer referral service advertisements shall contain the following disclosure: “The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision. Before you decide to hire the lawyer to whom you are referred, ask that lawyer for written information about that lawyer’s qualifications and experience.” Outdoor advertisements may contain, in lieu of the above disclosure, the following abbreviated version: “Before choosing a lawyer, ask for written information about the lawyer’s legal qualifications and experience.” Disclosure statements must appear in type that is clearly legible and is no smaller than one-fourth of the size of the largest type otherwise appearing in the advertisement. These disclosures, however, need not appear in advertisements in the public print media that contain no illustrations and no information other than that listed in subdivision (c) (11) (12) of rule 4-7.2 or written communications sent in compliance with rule 4-7.4.CommentThe disclosure required by this rule is designed to encourage the informed selection of a lawyer. A prospective client is entitled to know the experience and qualifications of any lawyer seeking to represent the prospective client. The required disclosure would be ineffective if it appeared in an advertisement so briefly or minutely as to be overlooked or ignored. Thus the type size to be used for the disclosure is specified to ensure that the disclosure will be conspicuous.RULE 4-7.4 DIRECT CONTACT WITH PROSPECTIVE CLIENTS(a) Solicitation. [no change](b) Written Communication.(1) [no change](A) [no change](B) [no change](C) [no change](D) [no change](E) [no change](F) [no change](2) Written communications to prospective clients for the purpose of obtaining professional employment are subject to the following requirements:(A) [no change](B) [no change](C) [no change](D) [no change](E) [no change](F) [no change](G) [no change](H) Written communications shall be on letter-sized paper rather than legal-sized paper and shall not be made to resemble legal pleadings or other legal documents. This provision does not preclude the mailing of brochures and pamphlets.(I) [no change](J) [no change](K) [no change]Comment[no change]RULE 4-7.5 ADVERTISEMENTS IN THE ELECTRONIC MEDIA OTHER THAN COMPUTER-ACCESSED COMMUNICATIONS (a) Generally. [no change] (b) Appearance on Television or Radio. Advertisements on the electronic media such as television and radio may contain, but are not necessarily limited to containing, some or all of the information listed in rule 4-7.2(c)(11). The information shall be articulated by a single human voice, or on-screen text, with no background sound other than instrumental music. No person’s voice or image, other than that of a lawyer who is a member of the firm whose services are advertised, may be used in a television or radio advertisement. Visual images appearing in a television advertisement shall be limited to the advertising lawyer in front of a background consisting of a single solid color, a set of law books in an unadorned bookcase, or the lawyer’s own office (with no other office personnel shown). A limited exception applies to lawyer referral service advertisements permitted under rule 4-7.11, insofar as a non- attorney spokesperson may speak or appear on behalf of the participating attorneys in television or radio advertisements. If such a spokesperson is used, the spokesperson shall provide a spoken disclosure identifying herself or himself as a spokesperson and disclosing that she or he is not an attorney. Television and radio advertisements by lawyer referral services are otherwise subject shall conform to the requirements of this rule.(1) Prohibited Content . Television and radio advertisements shall not contain: (A) any feature that is deceptive, misleading, manipulative, or that is likely to confuse the viewer; (B) any spokesperson’s voice or image that is recognizable to the public; or (C) any background sound other than instrumental music. (2) Permissible Content . Television and radio advertisements may contain: (A) Images that otherwise conform to the requirements of these rules; or (B) A non-attorney spokesperson speaking on behalf of the attorney or law firm, as long as the spokesperson is not a celebrity recognizable to the public. If a spokesperson is used, the spokesperson shall provide a spoken disclosure identifying the spokesperson as a spokesperson and disclosing that the spokesperson is not an attorney.Commentlast_img read more

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6 ways to make your home smarter

first_imgNow that the kids are back to school, many homeowners are helping their homes to become “smarter,” too.According to Coldwell Banker’s annual smart home report, 32% of Americans surveyed said they have smart home products in their homes, representing a 33% year-over-year jump.A smart home won’t set you back as much as a college degree. In fact, Consumer Reportssays a total investment of a little more than $1,000 can make a big difference.Here are 6 clever ways to up your smart home game.Smart thermostats: You’ll love a thermostat that can adjust temperatures throughout the day and seasons when the result is more money in your pocket. For even more savings, ask your local utility company if they offer rebates for this energy saving upgrade.Smart lighting: This is the cheapest, easiest fix for any homeowner. Control your lights from anywhere and cut your energy costs with smart LED bulbs.Smart doorbells: In addition to the peace of mind knowing exactly when a package has been delivered, these wi-fi enabled doorbells serve double duty as home security. No one will know for sure if you are home or away since you can talk to them from your smartphone.Smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors: No more guessing when the batteries need to be changed. This upgraded version lets you know when the battery is low. It also notifies you when smoke is detected while you are away from home so you can alert authorities and potentially reduce damages.Smart locks: Never worry about losing a key again because you can create temporary electronic keys. You’ll always be sure you locked the door because most include an auto-lock and unlock function. Your favorite virtual voice assistant can also control the device.Smart outlets: With a remote outlet you can cut off power to anything that’s plugged in right from your phone … like that iron you may have left on. That peace of mind when you are traveling, at work or at school is priceless. 21SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Myriam DiGiovanni After writing for Credit Union Times and The Financial Brand, Myriam DiGiovanni covers financial literacy for FinancialFeed. She is also a storytelling expert and works with credit unions to help … Web: www.financialfeed.com Detailslast_img read more

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Mexican inmates die after drinking anti-virus gel

first_imgLocal media reported that the inmates had mixed the gel with a cola drink.”They weren’t motivated by health, but to drink alcohol and that caused their death,” Puebla’s Interior Minister David Mendez told reporters.Prison authorities have distributed antibacterial gel in Mexico’s chronically overcrowded prisons in a bid to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.Mexico, which has a population of 127 million, has so far registered more than a quarter of a million infections and more than 27,000 COVID-19 deaths. Three inmates of a prison in Mexico died after ingesting antibacterial gel distributed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, local authorities said Wednesday.The men thought the gel would have the same effects as an alcoholic drink, state authorities said. A fourth man is reported to be in a serious condition.”Three of the four inmates lost their lives due to intoxication and the survivor told prison authorities what happened,” a statement from Puebla state’s security department said. Topics :last_img read more

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Late South Korea triathlete’s team mates detail abuse allegations

first_imgTopics : “The coach and the captain habitually beat and verbally abused Suk-hyeon and us,” she added.In one instance, the coach forced them to eat 200,000 won ($167.00) worth of bread and then throw it all back up as a penalty for drinking a cup of cola and gaining weight, she said.Another team mate described life in the athletes dorm as the “abyss of hell” but said she believed this was the world athletes had to live in.The lawmaker who arranged the news conference said it took courage from the athletes to come forward as they were afraid of reprisals.Choi’s death sparked a nationwide uproar, especially after she was found to have filed complaints with the police, national sports bodies and a human rights watchdog.The head of the national triathlon association apologized at the parliamentary hearing for “only believing the coach”.South Korea’s elite sports community is notorious for its “win-at-all-costs” culture, with its brutal training regimes and a strong hierarchical relationship between coaches and older and younger athletes.Last year, several female athletes accused their male coaches of sexual and verbal abuse amid the #MeToo movement, including two-time Olympic champion short track speed skater Shim Suk-hee, who said she was repeatedly raped by her coach.The sports ministry and Korean Sport and Olympic Committee pledged a thorough investigation on Monday. Her coach and captain denied any wrongdoing at a parliamentary hearing on Monday.A sports ministry official told the hearing that the physiotherapist was a friend of the coach and was working with the team despite not having a license.He is no longer with the team and Reuters was unable to contact him.One of Choi’s former team mates, who did not give her name and wore a mask to conceal her identity, told a news conference before the hearing that the team was “a kingdom built only for the coach and certain members”.center_img Former team mates of a South Korean triathlete found dead last month after alleging she had been abused by her coaching staff said on Monday athletes endured a living “hell” and were habitually beaten and verbally abused.Choi Suk-hyeon, a member of the national triathlon team, died at her team dorm after leaving a message to her mother asking her to “reveal the sins” of her abusers. She was 22.Choi did not reveal names in the message, which was released by a lawmaker last week, but her family and team mates said she had suffered years of physical and verbal abuse from her coach, physiotherapist and captain of her Gyeongju City team.last_img read more

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Flu shot clinic in Sunman

first_imgSunman, IN—The Ripley County Health Department will host a Public Flu Shot Clinic in Sunman on Monday, March 16 from 5-7 pm.  The event will be held at the Sunman Community Park-Campbell building.  The flu vaccine is recommended for anyone 65 and older and for anyone over 18 and not allergic to eggs.  Please bring your insurance information with you to be billed.  For those residents will no insurance, there is no charge for the vaccine.  For more information, you can contact the Health Department at 812.689.5751.  87 people have now died this season from the influenza virus in Indiana as of March 6.  That is up 18 people from last week’s reports according to data from the Indiana State Department of Health. The report indicates that the flu in Indiana is still widespread and high.last_img read more

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