The D.C. Bar Rules of Professional Responsibility Review Committee unexpectedly extended the public comment period on its proposal to amend D.C. Rule 9.1 to include ABA Model Rule 8.4(g). Comments may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org by close of business this Friday April 19.
The Christian Legal Society has prepared a sample comment letter that can be sent by email. Any short email expressing concerns about ABA Model Rule 8.4(g) is also effective.
ABA Model Rule 8.4(g) is a deeply flawed rule adopted by the American Bar Association in August 2016. Fortunately, ABA Model Rule 8.4(g) operates only in those states in which the highest court chooses to adopt it; and only the Vermont Supreme Court has done so. After examining ABA Model Rule 8.4(g) closely, at least 11 states have chosen the prudent course: wait to see whether other states adopt ABA Model Rule 8.4(g) and then observe its reallife consequences for attorneys in those states.
Professor Eugene Volokh, a nationally recognized First Amendment expert, explains why Model Rule 8.4(g) is a speech code for lawyers in this helpful two-minute video. Professor Josh Blackman recently presented an excellent Federalist Society teleforum on the Rule. The Christian Legal Society’s comment letter explains the many concerns raised by the D.C. Rules Committee’s proposal to effectively adopt ABA Model Rule 8.4(g).