Comments

Published at 61 Fordham Law Review 559 (1992)

Document Type

Article

Abstract

In this Article, Professor Munneke continues the debate over ethical rules governing lawyers' professional affiliations with nonlawyers, arguing in favor of the adoption of uniform rules that regulate lawyers' conduct in the context of specific ethical issues, such as confidentiality and conflicrs of interest. In Professor Munneke's view, the retention of ethical rules that prohibit law firm diversification impedes the ability of lawyers to compete effectively in today's rapidly changing marketplace of professional services.

Professor Munneke moreover questions whether state bar association rules that prohibit law firm diversification are capable of withstanding judicial scrutiny under the federal antitrust laws and the First Amendment. According to Professor Munneke, a substantial question exists as to whether the state action exemption should apply to shield these rules from antitrust attack. Professor Munneke further asserts that First Amendment theories of freedom of association and commercial speech may impel less restrictive alternatives to the current regulatory scheme.