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ISBA Advisory Opinions on Professional Conduct

  • Applicability of Fee Division and Conflict of Interest Rules in Of Counsel Relationship 16-04
  • Duties and Obligations of Departing Law Firm Associate 12-14
  • Fee Sharing Between Discharged Lawyer and Successor Lawyer 12-11
  • Non-compete Provision of Partnership Agreement 97-09

Other Ethics Resources

  • Illinois Rule of Professional Conduct 1.9 Duties to Former Clients
  • Illinois Rule of Professional Conduct 1.16 Declining or Terminating Representation
  • Illinois Rule of Professional Conduct 5.1 Responsibilities of Partners, Managers, and Supervisory Lawyers
  • Illinois Rule of Professional Conduct 5.3 Responsibilities Regarding Nonlawyer Assistance
  • Illinois Rule of Professional Conduct 5.6 Restrictions on Right to Practice

More ISBA Ethics Resources

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  • Human Resources 101 for Your Law Firm
  • The Hiring Process, An Applicant's Background, and the Legal Issues Facing Employers

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  • Best practices to impart to business owners
    Mason Cole
    The Bottom Line, September 2017

    Choosing a partner to embark on the challenge of launching a business should be approached similarly to finding a life partner.

  • Busted: The myth of the digital native
    Samantha Swartz
    Bench & Bar, August 2017

    Judge Walker's second summer extern, Samantha Swartz, says while it's assumed that millennials are naturally gifted when it comes to technology, it's better to say that they're ready and willing to adapt to tech challenges.

  • Law firm partner relations: The foundation of a successful firm
    John W. Olmstead
    The Bottom Line, May 2016

    Getting the right “partner dynamic”—and a positive partner relations culture—is the key ingredient and the core basic building block of a successful law firm. It is the foundation for the firm.

  • Tips for Hiring Your First Associate
    Illinois Bar Journal, February 2016

    Don't forget to consider the cost of training.

  • Organizing your small firm or solo practice
    Amber L. Mikula
    YLDNews, August 2015

    In order to be prepared to start your own practice, you should start out by establishing an organizational plan, including staff job descriptions, policies and procedures, document control, and file checklists.

  • Two laws all employers must be aware of in 2015
    Laura D. Mruk
    The Corporate Lawyer, February 2015

    As of January 1, 2015, Illinois has enacted two new laws that impact most employers. 

  • How Not to Be a Victim of Law Firm Embezzlement
    Janan Hanna
    Illinois Bar Journal, September 2013

    Employee theft is an all-too-common occurrence. Experts advise lawyers how not to be victims.

  • Bringing in new law firm partners: Strategies for minimizing your risk
    John W. Olmstead
    The Bottom Line, April 2013

    Just because the associate has been a good associate does not mean that the associate will be a good partner—the relationship will be different.

  • Law firm partner compensation
    John W. Olmstead
    The Bottom Line, June 2011

    Can compensation make a difference in a partner's motivation, performance, and contribution to the firm?

  • Hiring How-Tos, Firing Fundamentals
    Helen W. Gunnarsson
    Illinois Bar Journal, March 2011

    Recruiting employees and letting them go are both fraught with legal pitfalls. Here's how you can help your clients and your own firm avoid HR missteps.

  • The hiring process—Legal considerations
    Michael R. Lied
    The Bottom Line, March 2010

    Some highlights of the law of hiring and employment-- A must-read for any attorney who is also an employer.

  • Needle in a haystack
    Toby Paulose
    The Bottom Line, February 2009

    An overview of the processes that recruiters use when looking for that special job candidate. Also included are some tips on what to look for in a resume and and the types of questions you should ask to get the information that you are looking for during a face to face interview..

  • Bacon-Saving Support Staff
    Karen Erger
    Illinois Bar Journal, October 2008

    Don't think your support staff can make or break you? Think again.

  • Accommodating the religious needs of employees
    Mel Muskovitz
    The Counselor, June 2007

    Over the past several years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has received an increase in the number of charges alleging religious discrimination.

  • Hire Laterally, Think Ethically
    Helen W. Gunnarsson
    Illinois Bar Journal, May 2007

    Some things Illinois lawyers and law firms should think about before making a lateral move or hire.

  • Thomas A. Bruno
    Bench & Bar, October 2006

    Caselaw to consider when interviewing prospective employees.

  • Teach Your Newbies Well
    Karen Erger
    Illinois Bar Journal, October 2005

    You teach by example – is your example worth emulating?

  • The labor and employment top 10
    Richard L. Samson
    The Bottom Line, September 2005

    Employers face an ever-increasing thicket of laws and regulations governing their workplaces.

  • Employee termination
    SueAnn Sage Billimack
    The Counselor, October 2004

    Business lawyers are frequently called upon to advise their clients with respect to employment terminations.

  • Employment interviews—don’t ask any questions?
    Jeffrey A. Mollet
    Agricultural Law, August 2004

    Tips to help you find the right employee.

  • Is It Time to Grow Your Staff?
    Paul Sullivan
    Illinois Bar Journal, April 2004

    If you can't seem to catch up to your workload, it may be time to bring in help. Here are some of your options.

  • Cutting the pie: Determining partner compensation
    John W. Olmstead
    The Bottom Line, April 2004

    Many law firms are struggling with compensation systems that no longer meet the needs of the firm and the individual partners. Failure to explore alternatives to failing systems often result in partner dissatisfaction, leading to partner defections and disintegration of the firm.

  • Firing a family member
    Bernard Kliska
    The Counselor, February 2004

    If you think firing a long-time employee is difficult, try firing one who is a family member. As daunting the task, sometimes it’s necessary.

  • Getting the Legal Writing Sample You Need
    Mary Beth Beazley
    Illinois Bar Journal, October 1999

    Last month's column urged employers to assess the writing skills of prospective hires; this month, learn how to get the writing sample you need.

  • Hiring Good Writers
    Maureen B. Collins
    Illinois Bar Journal, September 1999

    Here's how to screen prospective hires for good legal writing skills.

  • Don’t Be a Sitting Duck for In-Firm Theft
    Anne E. Thar
    Illinois Bar Journal, February 1999

    Think the unthinkable; put safeguards in place to protect yourself from theft and embezzlement by employees and colleagues.

  • Rejection Letters: “Just Say No” Is Not Enough
    Laura Walsh
    Illinois Bar Journal, November 1998

    Saying "no'' to job applicants is never pleasant, but here's how to make rejection letters less painful for sender and recipient