Welcome to APRL
Welcome to the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers website (“APRL” pronounced April). Originally formed over two decades ago primarily as an association of lawyers who represent other lawyers in disciplinary proceedings, APRL membership now encompasses lawyers who provide services in all aspects of legal ethics and professional responsibility. In addition to respondents' counsel work, APRL lawyers also represent and advise lawyers and law firms on ethics and professional responsibility, risk management, legal malpractice, and the law of lawyering. APRL also numbers academics and judges among its members. APRL remains the largest organization of lawyers primarily representing other lawyers in disciplinary proceedings. It has over 500 members world wide.
APRL marshals the talent, energy and perspectives of its members to bring about positive change in the areas of legal ethics and the law of lawyering. It also issues public statements and files amicus briefs. APRL and its members are passionate about professional responsibility and together they share their experiences, insights and expertise.
The organization holds two national conferences a year which serve as a means of sharing knowledge, providing a forum for the debate of ideas and creating an environment for social interaction. In addition to these semi-annual conferences, every two to three years APRL holds an international gathering. On a daily basis, APRL members across the country participate in a highly informed member listserv. No other organization provides the range of offerings that APRL does to make its members current, knowledgeable and prepared.
Upcoming APRL Meeting
2015 Report of the APRL Regulation of Lawyer Advertising Committee
On June 22, 2015, the APRL Board voted to approve the publication of the Report of APRL’s Lawyer Advertising Committee. The Report recommends extensive revisions to lawyer advertising rules so they are compatible with modern electronic means of communication. The Report recognizes the need for lawyer advertising rules to be consistent with the First Amendment, anti-trust laws, the globalization of legal practice, and rapid technology changes, all of which warrant “a realignment of the balance between the professional responsibility rules and the constitutional right of lawyers to communicate with the public.” The Report will be the subject of discussion at APRL’s Annual Meeting, to be held July 30 to August 1, 2015, in Chicago.
APRL Supports Law Student Division Regarding Law School Skills Training
On August 7, 2014, the APRL Board voted to support the Law Student Division's pending Motion to Sever the consideration of Interpretation 305-2 in the Legal Education Section's Resolution 103A. APRL recognizes the importance of experiential education as part of the law school curriculum, particularly in the current economic environment, and supports an ongoing, active debate on how best to integrate externships, both paid and unpaid, into the law school experience so that law students will be better prepared to provide legal services to members of the public upon graduation.
2014 Report of the APRL, NOBC, and ABA Committee on Lawyer Assistance Programs (“CoLAP”) Joint Committee on Aging Lawyers Has Been Issued
Representatives from the National Organization of Bar Counsel (“NOBC”), APRL, and ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs have prepared the 2014 Report on how the legal profession is tackling issues related to aging lawyers. The 2014 Report builds on the 2007 APRL-NOBC Joint Report. More information is available here.
APRL Board approves recommendation of APRL’s Policy Statements Committee to Co-sponsor ABA Resolution on Judicial Disqualification Based on Financing of Judicial Elections
At its regularly scheduled meeting on July 9, 2013, the APRL Board voted to adopt the recommendation of the Policy Statements Committee to co-sponsor ABA Resolution 108 and oppose Resolution 10B on judicial disqualification based on the financing of judicial elections. ABA Resolution 108 is sponsored by several ABA Standing Committees seeking to amend the ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct to provide guidance on when disqualification of an elected judge is required as a result of “aggregate contributions” or “independent expenditures” made in support of, or in opposition to, a judge’s election or retention campaign. ABA Resolution 108 can be viewed or download here. ABA Resolution 10B can be viewed or downloaded here.
Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts Agrees with Position Stated in APRL’s Amicus Brief
On July 10, 2013, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts issued a decision in RFF Family Partnership, LP v. Burns & Levinson, LLP, Case No. SJC-11371, that recognized the availability of the attorney-client privilege for communications between lawyers and their law firm's in-house counsel provided the following four conditions are satisfied: “(1) the law firm has designated an attorney or attorneys within the firm to represent the firm as in-house counsel, (2) the in-house counsel has not performed any work on the client matter at issue or a substantially related matter, (3) the time spent by the attorneys in these communications with in-house counsel is not billed to a client, and (4) the communications are made in confidence and kept confidential.” In issuing its decision, the court acknowledged the amicus briefs of APRL, the American Bar Association; the Attorneys' Liability Assurance Society, Inc.; and the Boston Bar Association. The full opinion can be viewed or downloaded here.
Amicus Brief Filed by APRL with the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
On February 25, 2013, APRL filed with the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts in RFF Family Partnership, LP v. Burns & Levinson, LLP, Case No. SJC-11371, an amicus curiae brief in support of the court's continued recognition of the availability of the attorney-client privilege for communications between lawyers and their law firm's in-house counsel. To review the brief, click here.
Supreme Court of Georgia Agrees with Position Stated in APRL’s Amicus Brief
On July 11, 2013, the Supreme Court of Georgia addressed the same issue decided the day before by the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts regarding the availability of of the attorney-client privilege for communications between lawyers and their law firm's in-house counsel. In St. Simons Waterfront, LLC v. Hunter, MacLean, Exley & Dunn, P.C., Case No. S12G1924, the court reached the same result, holding that the privilege is available in those situations. The full opinion can be viewed or downloaded here.
Amicus Brief Filed by APRL with the Supreme Court of Georgia
On January 24, 2013, APRL filed with the Supreme Court of Georgia in St. Simons Waterfront, LLC v. Hunter, MacLean, Exley & Dunn, P.C., Case No. S12G1924, an amicus curiae brief in support of the court's continued recognition of the availability of the attorney-client privilege for communications between lawyers and their law firm's in-house counsel. To review the brief, click here.
Legal Ethics Calendar for 2014-2016
The APRL legal ethics calendar provides a regularly updated list of upcoming national conferences focused on legal ethics, professional responsibility, and lawyer liability issues. To review the calendar, click here.
Public Statement on Ethics 20/20 Commission's Foreign Lawyer Proposals (12/11/12)
On December 11, 2012, the APRL Board approved two statements, the first in support of the ABA Ethics 20/20 Commission's proposed revisions to the ABA Model Rule on Pro Hac Vice Admission and the second in support of the Commission's proposed revisions to ABA Model Rule 5.5 and the ABA Model Rule for Registration of In-House Counsel concerning inbound foreign lawyers. To review or download the statements, please click here. On December 18, 2012, the Commission circulated its resolutions concerning those same issues, which will be considered by the ABA House of Delegates on February 11, 2013 at the ABA Mid-year Meeting in Dallas, Texas. To review the Commission's revised proposals, click here.
For Members: Getting Started with the Website
If you are an APRL member and this is the first time you are visiting the new site, you will need to update your member account information. Until you create your member account, you will not be able to take full advantage of the website's new features, nearly all of which are limited to registered members.
If you have forgotten your password, go to the login page, click “Forgot User ID or password”, and follow the instructions to retrieve your password.