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BigLawMoney and Meaning in the Modern Law Firm$
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Mitt Regan and Lisa H. Rohrer

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226741949

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226742274.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 25 May 2022

Trusted Advisors and Service Providers

Trusted Advisors and Service Providers

(p.200) 9 Trusted Advisors and Service Providers

Mitt Regan

Lisa H. Rohrer

University of Chicago Press

Chapter 9 examines whether intensifying business pressures on firms are leading partners to be less willing to play a social role that involves adherence to professional obligations beyond simply furthering a clients interests. It also examines whether lawyers today have fewer opportunities to provide advice based on expansive judgment rather than technical expertise. Interviews indicate that lawyers see their role ideally as a "trusted advisor" who discusses not only the letter of the law but its spirit, as well as nonlegal considerations when they are relevant. This contrasts with conceptions of the lawyer's role proposed by some legal ethics scholars in which the lawyer acts as an impartial moral activist on the basis of considerations of ordinary morality, or as someone who is devoted to ensuring that justice is done in each representation. Partners believe that both these conceptions undermine the ability to serve as an effective trusted advisor because they call into question the commitment of the lawyer to the client. They see the client's perception of such commitment as the foundation of trust, which makes the client receptive to expansive advice that takes into account a wide range of considerations.

Keywords:   legal ethics, professional responsibility, trusted advisor, moral activist, commitment, trust

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