Sunday, May 8, 2016

Clients - Your Lawyer Is Not Supposed To Have Sex With You

People going through divorces or child custody battles are vulnerable. This is not a professional opinion, since I do not handle family law cases. This is common sense. It is also common sense that your lawyer, often times happening in family law litigation, should not make sexual overtures to you. It wasn't until 2007 that Missouri finally adopted an ethical rule making it an ethical violation for a lawyer to have sex with his or her client. It took that long to codify what is common sense.

Lawyers and clients are not in an even playing field when clients are dependent on their lawyers for outcomes in their cases. This is true in family law settings. A client needs to trust his or her lawyer and a lawyer needs to be trustworthy and not motivated by emotion, lust or crushes. Unfortunately, sometimes lawyers violate the client's trust and engage in sexual relationships with clients. That is never okay. I have represented clients on several occasions where lustful lawyers place their "needs" above those of their clients. One such lawyer was elevate to a judgeship before he was dethroned, disbarred and criminally prosecuted. He was also a leader in his church. He was a fraud.

Some lawyers are not strangers to egotism, narcissism, sociopathy.  Others may be unhappy, confused and insecure. There are professional services available to disturbed lawyers. Lawyers taking advantage of their clients sexually is never acceptable. There never is an excuse for a lawyer to have a sexual relationship with a client. Never. If your lawyer comes on to you, you need to report him or her to the state bar. 

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