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ISBA Ethics Infoline

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Ethics Question of the Week

Do I need to formally notify client to end attorney-client relationship?

Q.  In the past I represented a client on a number of different matters. I never sent a formal letter ending the attorney-client relationship. Am I still the client’s attorney?

A.  As Comment [4] to Rule 1.3 states, if a lawyer has served a client over a substantial period in a variety of matters, the client sometimes may assume that the lawyer will continue to serve on a continuing basis unless the lawyer gives notice of withdrawal. Any doubt should be clarified by the lawyer in writing.

Read more Ethics Question of the Week on Illinois Lawyer Now

These questions are representative of calls received on the ISBA’s ethics hotline. The information provided above is meant as an educational tool to highlight potentially applicable Illinois RPC or other ethics resources that might help the lawyer answer the question posed. The information provided isn’t legal advice. Because every situation is different, often complex, and the law is constantly evolving, you shouldn’t rely upon this general information without conducting your own research.