US Tech Rule Adoption

New Year, New Rules (State Bar Rules that is)

Happy New Year!

Here’s to some new rules

It’s 2019 and while most people are no longer saying “New Year, New You” that isn’t quite the case for Attorneys from Louisiana; it’s more of a “new year, new rules”.

Joining 34 other states, Louisiana and their State Bar Association has updated it’s Code of Professionalism to be in line with the ABA’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct. This change is specifically about the duty of technology competence for lawyers and the need to “stay informed about changes in the law, communication, and technology which affect the practice of law”.

These rule changes are particularly valuable as reporters and reporting firms increase their tech offerings; their clients must remain vigilant. Knowing how testimony is stored and ensuring that your exhibits remain off the record until introduced is key when dealing with new testimony tools.

In 2012 the ABA’s House of Delegates voted to amend Model Rule 1.1 creating an obligation for lawyers to remain informed of changes in technology and to use said technology responsibly, including social media. It reads as follows:

To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill, a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology, engage in continuing study and education and comply with all continuing legal education requirements to which the lawyer is subject.

For a linked map of every state and their specific rules and adoption dates, check out this LawSites article.

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