FLORIDA BAR ETHICS OPINION
October 6, 1964
Advisory ethics opinions are not binding.
A law firm may provide testators of wills prepared by the firm with a memorandum
containing a general explanation of the possible effects upon a will of substantial depreciation or
appreciation of a testator’s assets or of marriage, divorce, birth or death of the testator or
27, 28 [See current 4-7.11 and 4-7.18(a)]
Chairman Smith stated the opinion of the committee:
A member of The Florida Bar states that his firm desires to prepare a memorandum
which would be commercially printed and would bear the name of the firm. The memorandum
would consist of one page of single spaced printing on lettersize paper, and would contain a
general explanation of the possible effects of substantial depreciation or appreciation of a
testator’s assets, or of marriage, divorce, birth or death of the testator or potential beneficiaries.
A copy of this memorandum would be given only to testators of wills prepared by the firm and
delivery would be made to the client at the time of execution of the will. The purpose of the
memorandum is to impress upon the client the importance of information which is supplied to
him in the course of planning the estate and preparation of the will.
The Committee sees no ethical impropriety in the practice proposed. Indeed, most
members affirmatively approve the practice as a wise and valuable service to the client. It is
suggested, however, that the memorandum be prepared in letter form and provision made for
typing the client’s name and address on the form so that in essence the material supplied will be
a letter from the firm directed to an individual client.