Ethical Issues in Advocacy by Nonprofit Organizations: The Case of Legal Consultation and Representation of Older Clients in Israel
Journal of International Aging Law & Policy, 10, 1-44, 2019
44 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2020
Date Written: 2019
Nonprofit organizations (NPOs; also known sometimes as NGOs or non-governmental organizations) that provide legal consultation and representation for older persons are important in making legal services accessible to the older population. These NPOs specialize in elder issues, with an additional range of activity that includes education and information dissemination, aimed at creating social change. The NPO representation system differs from that of the private sector for both the client and the lawyer because the older population as a group (and not only the individual client) is part of the process (and the goals) even when not physically present. This understanding has engendered the need to examine how lawyers working in NPOs for the promotion of older persons’ rights cope with the unique ethical issues involved with representation.
The aim of this Article is to attempt to answer the following research questions: What are the characteristic ethical dilemmas involved when representing older persons through NPOs? To what degree is there an awareness of ethical conflicts, and what is the scope of the response provided through the rules of professional liability? Clarification of these issues will allow investigation of the need to create a unifying system of rules, as well as a code of ethics, for guidance regarding appropriate professional conduct. While these questions are examined within the unique context of the Israeli legal system and its socio-cultural context, we believe the issues and challenges affect many countries and cultures.
Keywords: Elder Law, Ethics, NGOs, Older Clients, Israel
JEL Classification: K30, K40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation