Can a defense attorney represent two defendants in the same case?

Asked by: Faye Mohr  |  Last update: February 19, 2022
Score: 4.1/5 (50 votes)

Generally speaking, as addressed in Rule 1.06, a lawyer shall not represent opposing parties to the same litigation. This makes sense, and normally, it is the defendant and the government who are opposing parties in the same litigation.

Can a lawyer represent 2 clients in the same case?

So long as there is no potential conflict of interest involved, an attorney can represent two different parties in either a criminal or civil case.

Can you represent two co-defendants?

An attorney has a duty of loyalty to his client. An attorney cannot represent two co-defendants if there is an actual conflict. ... If there is a potential conflict, an attorney may get "A" and "B" to agree to allow their information to be shared with the same attorney. However, this is very risky for the attorney.

Can a lawyer defend both sides?

On the one hand, the rule sensibly says that a lawyer cannot serve two parties who are directly adverse in the same matter; it also bars representation “when there is a significant risk that the representation of one or more clients will be materially limited by the lawyer's responsibilities to another client, a former ...

What risks are involved when a lawyer simultaneously represents two or more clients on the same side of litigation?

[11] When lawyers representing different clients in the same matter or in substantially related matters are closely related by blood or marriage, there may be a significant risk that client confidences will be revealed and that the lawyer's family relationship will interfere with both loyalty and independent ...


15 related questions found

What happens if two people in court have the same lawyer?

If you mean they happen to have the same lawyer from another case, your lawyer represents you. If the other lawyer use to your lawyer, he can be against you in this case.

Can I talk to another lawyer if I already have one?

Fire your attorney before you hire someone else. There are ethical rules that prevent lawyers from speaking to someone who already has an attorney. Generally, if you're shopping around for new representation, the new lawyer will ask to see a copy of the letter you sent firing your old attorney.

What is the rule about simultaneously representing two clients whose interests are adverse?

ABA Model Rule 1.7(a) prohibits concurrent conflicts, which it defines as "directly adverse" interests or interests that carry "a significant risk that the representation of one or more clients will be materially limited by the lawyer's responsibilities to another client, a former client or a third person or by a ...

Can a lawyer represent multiple clients?

Lawyers generally should not represent more than one client in the same legal matter. ... The lawyer or law practice may still represent one party provided their duty of confidentiality is not put at risk and the other party has given their informed consent to the new arrangements.

Can you as a lawyer be the counsel of two companies and then choose to represent one of them against the other in the court?

Your lawyer should not act for you or your partner in those circumstances. Lawyers are not able to represent more than one client in the same legal matter unless they comply with Rule 12 of the Rules.

Can two lawyers from the same firm represent opposing parties?

Same lawyer cannot appear or represent parties which are opposite parties in litigation.

Can a lawyer represent a family member?

Lawyers are allowed to represent their family members. ... The ability to provide dispassionate counsel may be impaired when a lawyer is emotionally involved in a case. That is why a lawyer should always think long and hard before accepting any case that involves a family member. The practice of law can be stressful.

What does directly adverse mean?

Within the meaning of Rule 1.06(b), the representation of one client is "directly adverse" to the representation of another client if the lawyer's independent judgment on behalf of a client or the lawyer's ability or willingness to consider, recommend or carry out a course of action will be or is reasonably likely to ...

Can the same law firm represent both parties?

It is feasible (albeit far from ideal) with the informed consent of the clients for two lawyers in the same firm to represent parties opposed in interest. Joint retainer agreements will typically spell out that in the event of a conflict, the law firm may decline to continue to represent one or all of the clients.

Can I represent co defendants?

The answer is a qualified, “Yes,” provided that there are no conflicts between the defendants that require the attorney to choose which client to more vigorously represent. As a practical matter, it is rarely advisable for an attorney to represent co-defendants charged in the same crime or criminal conspiracy.

What is a co defender?

Definition of codefendant

: a defendant in the same lawsuit or criminal prosecution as another defendant or group of defendants : a joint defendant … the defendant argued that it was plain error for the trial court to have permitted the prosecution to treat his co-defendant as hostile … — State v. Saenz.

What are the two types of legal conflicts?

What are the two kinds of legal conflicts are resolved in our legal system? Criminal and Civil cases.

Can a lawyer represent a client in court?

(c) A lawyer may represent a client with respect to a matter in the circumstances described in paragraph (b) above if each potentially affected client provides consent to such representation after full disclosure of the existence and nature of the possible conflict and the possible adverse consequences of such ...

Can a client consent to incompetent representation?

A lawyer cannot obtain an advance consent to incompetent representation. ... The lawyer must seek court approval where necessary and take steps to minimize harm to the clients. See rule 1.16. The lawyer must continue to protect the confidences of the clients from whose representation the lawyer has withdrawn.

Can you sue a former client?

An attorney may be entitled to bring suit against a former client, so long as representation of the former client has ended and the present case does not involve any confidential communications made to the attorney by the former client. ... The defendant is a former client of the plaintiff's lawyer in a divorce action.

Can a lawyer represent a friend?

This is generally always prohibited and any ethical lawyer would refuse to represent both clients. ... Lawyers are not allowed to represent you if they are your friend or have been associated with you as a couple during your marriage, or if they are a family member due to these conflict issues.

What is a conflict of interest in court?

conflict of interest. n. a situation in which a person has a duty to more than one person or organization, but cannot do justice to the actual or potentially adverse interests of both parties.

What is the general rule about representing a client whose interests may be adverse to a former client?

(a) A lawyer who has formerly represented a client in a matter shall not thereafter represent another person in the same or a substantially related matter in which that person's interests are materially adverse to the interests of the former client unless the former client gives informed consent, confirmed in writing.

Can a lawyer represent a client with interest adverse to those of a former client?

Section 39 of the Draft Code of Ethics require that an advocate shall not advise or represent both sides of a dispute and, except after adequate disclosure to and with the consent of the clients, preferably after receiving an independent legal advice, shall not act or continue to act in a matter when there is a ...

Can a firm represent both a corporation and its officers?

3 Under the Illinois RPC, if there is no conflict of interest, a lawyer repre- senting a corporation may also represent that corporation's officers. Thus, Sandra could represent both Buzz and Moon- shot if their interests are aligned.