The Lawyers' Lawyer Newsletter - Recent Developments in Risk Management - May 2016

May 3, 2016

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Conflicts of Interest — Subject Matter Conflicts — Can IP Attorneys Simultaneously Represent Two Clients That Are Prosecuting Patents for Similar Inventions?

Maling v. Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP, 473 Mass. 336, 42 N.E.3d 199 (2015)

Risk Management Issue: What constitutes an adequate conflicts check where two clients may be pursuing intellectual property in similar inventions (sometimes referred to as a "subject matter conflict")?

Disqualification — Obtaining Privileged Materials Outside of Discovery — Consultation With Former Employee of Opposing Party

In re RSR Corp., No. 13-0499, 2015 WL 7792871, at *3 (Tex. Dec. 4, 2015)

Risk Management Issue: What can law firms do to manage the risk of disqualification when they seek to consult with or engage a former employee of an opposing party?

Disqualification — Overly Broad Scope of Engagement Creates Concurrent Representation Conflicts

M'Guinness v. Johnson et al., 243 Cal. App. 4th 602 (2015)

Risk Management Issue: What can counsel for a closely held corporation do to avoid disqualification in the event of shareholder disputes?

Existence of Attorney-Client Relationship — Negotiations Affecting Client and Indemnifying Party

George Makhoul, etc. v. Watt, Tieder, Hoffar & Fitzgerald, LLP, et al., 11-CV-5108 (PKC) (E.D.N.Y. 2015)

Risk Management Issue: What must law firms do to avoid establishing attorney-client relationships when communicating during the course of an engagement with persons or entities that may be allied in interest to their actual clients?

Download or read the complete newsletter here: The Lawyers' Lawyer Newsletter

This newsletter has been prepared by Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP to provide information on recent legal developments of interest to our readers. It is not intended to provide legal advice for a specific situation or to create an attorney-client relationship.