The Florida Bar
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Sole Practitioners to Workers' Compensation Practice



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Sole Practitioners
Threats
Trial Publicity
Trust Accounts
Unlicensed Practice of Law
Wills, Estates, and Trusts
Withdrawal
Witness, Lawyer as
Witnesses
Worker's Compensation Practice



Sole Practitioners

Closing out practice
Disposition of client files
74-43, 77-1, 81-8
Division of fees with lawyer taking cases
74-47, 77-1
Office manager signing on trust account
64-40, 64-40 Rec.
Office-sharing with
Lawyers
67-21, 70-14, 76-11, 77-3
Nonlawyers
60-37, 61-9, 66-57
Separate partnership with nonlawyer to practice before state or federal agencies
65-4, 95-1



Threats

Criminal prosecution
Generally
89-3
Notice of worthless check
85-3
Bar Grievance
94-5



Trial Publicity

Allowing reporters to see copy of deposition 65-43
Government attorneys' obligations
70-43

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Trust Accounts

Charging fees and expenses from two cases against settlement received in one case 62-15
Checks identifying lawyer as lawyer
65-14
Costs advances from client placed in trust account
93-2
Credit card payments
76-37
Deposit held in trust by seller’s attorney when buyer is in default 02-6
Disclosing possession of client's funds to client's creditors 60-34
Disclosing trust account records to third parties
72-3, 93-5, 12-4
Disputed funds held in trust
02-4
Fees, which to place in trust accounts
93-2
Funds held for a "specific purpose"
82-, 87-12
Liens. See
Liens .
IRS demands records
72-3
Keeping client funds in several accounts to ensure complete FDIC coverage
72-37
Nonlawyer employee as a signatory
64-40, 64-40 Rec.
Nonrefundable retainer
93-2
Placing client funds in interest-bearing deposits with interest going to law firm
72-13
Settlement proceeds deposited directly info account in client's name
00-2, 00-2 (Rec)
Title insurance company requests agent's records for audit
93-5, 12-4
Writ of garnishment served on attorney
66-78
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Unlicensed Practice of Law

Bank's attorney signing and mailing form collection letters filled out by bank employees 75-4
Business corporation practicing law
88-13
Client's business providing mechanic's lien services to contractors
69-15
Collection agency's lawyer
Allowing agency to send form letters on law firm's letterhead
70-27
Representing agency's clients in collections
66-72
Consulting service for condominium developers
63-37
Corporation rendering professional services to building trade
64-25
Dividing fee with lawyer residing but not admitted in Florida
60-18, 62-3, 90-8
Lawyer employed by
Insurance company preparing estate analyses for prospective clients of company
64-33
Tax adviser company to represent taxpayers seeking ad valorem tax reductions
64-29
Lawyers not admitted in Florida
67-39, 68-49, 73-41
Mediation practice with nonlawyer mediators
94-6
Nonlawyer employees of law firm
70-62, 73-41, 73-43, 74-35, 87-11, 88-6, 89-5
Outsourcing
07-2
Partnership with nonlawyer to practice before state or federal agencies 65-4, 95-1
Preparing
Closing instruments or deed at request of real estate broker without contact with parties
61-1, 67-14
Documents for "estate protection service" for submission to customers
67-11
Estate analyses for use of insurance company's agents
64-33, 64-70
Pleadings without signing as attorney for party
79-7, 79-7 REC
Trust at request of trust company without contact with client
67-15, 95-2
Providing
Corporation with title insurance policies for sale to public
69-42
Mutual fund with prototype trust instruments for use by agents of fund
72-21
Representation of
Clients solicited by heir-hunting service
77-8, 97-3
Clients solicited by public adjusters
92-3
Clients solicited by securities arbitration company
95-2
Employees' association and individual members
61-5
Heir-finders who purchase claims to escheated property
73-32
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Wills, Estates, and Trusts

Agreement among attorneys who are not partners to divide fee if any of them probates will drafted by another of them 66-37
Binding agreement included in will setting attorney's fee for handling probate
64-15
Confidentiality of deceased client's information
10-3
Conflict of interest between husband and wife 95-4
Donation of will for charitable auction
86-9
Drafting instrument when uncertain as to legality
76-35
Duties owed by lawyer for personal representative to surviving spouse of decedent
76-16
Estate analyses prepared for insurance agents for presentation to prospective insurance clients
64-33, 64-70
Estate's attorney withholding appraisal of assets from IRS
65-54
Firm that drafted will
Giving executor an inventory of client's assets
72-40
Representing executor
64-39, 66-63, 72-40
Foundation attorney preparing wills for foundation constituents and guests
61-26
Heir finders
Accepting referrals from
97-3
Representation of
73-32
Joint representation of husband and wife in estate planning
95-4
Memorandum for testators on effects of changed circumstances on wills
64-60
Notification to testators of changes in law affecting wills
64-61
Preparing documents for "estate protection service" for submission to customers
67-11
Prototype trust instruments provided to mutual fund for use of agents
72-21
Representing client in probate of common-law husband's estate after client reveals deceased husband has legal wife in another state
65-50
Trust prepared pursuant to referral from trust company without contact with client
67-15, 95-2
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Withdrawal
Assistant city attorney's duty when defendant in private client's suit files third party complaint against city 76-18
Court denies motion to withdraw
93-8
Duty to withdraw when lawyer may be called as witness
64-39, 66-63, 72-2, 74-36, 76-26
Fees, entitlement to when matter referred out due to conflict of interest
62-57, 73-2, 89-1, 02-3
From worker's compensation case because inadequate fee will be awarded
69-9
Preventing harm to client
73-25, 84-3, 02-3
Removal of partnership's client files by withdrawing partner
69-1
Representation in civil action hindering representation in related criminal action
74-52
Supervising attorney influencing subordinate Legal Services attorney's decision to withdraw
78-15
Transitional conferences
66-22, 84-3
Upon
Client's refusal to submit to competency determination
73-25
Conflict developing between interests of jointly represented clients
69-2, 95-4, 02-3
Discovering client's claim is fraudulent
63-23
Dispute developing between clients
70-57
Learning that criminal defense client is using a false name 90-6 (Rec)
Learning that client deliberately lied at deposition
75-19
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Witness, Lawyer as
Attorney who was witness in one suit brought against corporation representing corporation in second suit brought by same plaintiff 66-76
Dividing contingent fee with attorney who served only as witness
68-19
Drafter of will representing executor in will contest although likely to testify
64-39, 66-63
Duty to decline or withdraw when
Another member of firm is likely to testify in client's behalf
66-63
It appears necessary for lawyer to testify in client's behalf
76-26, 92-6
Opposing counsel intends to call lawyer as witness
64-39, 72-2, 74-36
Representing own firm in suit when other members of firm will testify
84-4


Witnesses
Advancing expert witness fee 67-44, 72-27
Contingent fee paid to consulting firm that provides expert witness
98-1
Criminal defense lawyer suggesting that witness seek counsel
75-44
Dividing contingent fee with lawyer who served only as witness
68-19
Interviewing opposing party about party's anticipated testimony
69-40
Lawyer representing defendant in class action and related criminal prosecution conferring with person who is both plaintiff in civil case and witness for state in criminal case
74-52
Lawyer's wife testifying in behalf of client on fitness for child custody
61-31
Paying for testimony of occurrence witness
64-42
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Worker's Compensation Practice
Associate of firm representing employer/carrier moving to firm representing claimant 65-46
Claimant's attorney
Communicating directly with insurance carrier's claims personnel in litigated matter
65-62
Declining to prosecute penalty for late payment of award
65-38
Discharged attorney petitioning for fee
66-42
Representing
Both claimant and employer
62-63
Carrier and employer, preparing coverage opinion letter
93-8
Claimant when president of employer is close friend or client
65-23
Withdrawal from worker's compensation case without seeking approval because inadequate fee will be awarded
69-9


[Revised: 03-12-2014]