How to Ethically Part Ways With a Client

The Recorder
October 9, 2014

An effective method for preventing legal malpractice claims is knowing when and how to end an attorney-client relationship headed down a troublesome path.

While the legal duties to clients do not change, the practical steps for withdrawal do differ between litigation and non-litigation matters. For litigation matters, the court must approve the withdrawal. Yet, the first step for withdrawal for both litigation and non-litigation matters is the same—ask for the client's consent.

Typically, by the time that an attorney is seeking to withdraw, communications between the attorney and the client will have deteriorated. As a result, the request for the client's consent is typically in writing. If not, then the client's consent should be confirmed in writing.

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