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In Praise of Overzealous Representation - Lying to Judges, Deceiving Third Parties, and Other Ethical Conduct


Monroe H. Freedman


Hofstra University - Maurice A. Deane School of Law


Hofstra Law Review, Vol. 34, 2006
Hofstra Univ. Legal Studies Research Paper No. 06-9

Abstract:     
Three ethical rules are both clear and highly desirable - MR 3.3(a)(1), which forbids a lawyer to make a false statement of fact to a tribunal; MR 4.1(a), which forbids a lawyer to make a false statement of material fact to a third person; and MR 8.4(c), which proscribes conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation.

Nevertheless, by considering the larger legal context of the lawyer's role, by understanding inconsistent ethical rules in the light of reason, and by applying insights of moral philosophy, this article concludes that there are circumstances in which a lawyer can ethically make a false statement of fact to a tribunal, can ethically make a false statement of material fact to a third person, and can ethically engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 29

Keywords: Zeal, Overzeal, Lying, Deceit, Equivocation, Mental Reservation

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Date posted: April 12, 2006  

Suggested Citation

Freedman, Monroe H., In Praise of Overzealous Representation - Lying to Judges, Deceiving Third Parties, and Other Ethical Conduct. Hofstra Law Review, Vol. 34, 2006; Hofstra Univ. Legal Studies Research Paper No. 06-9. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=896511

Contact Information

Monroe H. Freedman (Contact Author)
Hofstra University - Maurice A. Deane School of Law ( email )
121 Hofstra University
Hempstead, NY 11549
United States

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