Statements of Client Rights

As part of our work to provide clients with the highest level of personal commitment and attention to detail in addition to efficient and effective legal advice, we also acknowledge and abide by the Statements of Client Rights as documented by any area/state in which we serve. Those listed by New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island are shown below.

NEW YORK

Statement of Client’s Rights:

1. You are entitled to be treated with courtesy and consideration at all times by your lawyer and the other lawyers and nonlawyer personnel in your lawyer’s office.

2. You are entitled to have your attorney handle your legal matter competently and diligently, in accordance with the highest standards of the profession. If you are not satisfied with how your matter is being handled, you have the right to discharge your attorney and terminate the attorney-client relationship at any time (court approval may be required in some matters and your attorney may have a claim against you for the value of services rendered to you up to the point of discharge).

3. You are entitled to your lawyer’s independent professional judgment and undivided loyalty uncompromised by conflicts of interest.

4. You are entitled to be charged reasonable fees and expenses and to have your lawyer explain before or within a reasonable time after the commencement of the representation how the fees and expenses will be computed and the manner and frequency of billing. You are entitled to request and receive a written itemized bill from your attorney at reasonable intervals. You may refuse to enter into any arrangement for fees and expenses that you find unsatisfactory. In the event of a fee dispute, you may have the right to seek arbitration: your attorney will provide you with the necessary information regarding arbitration in the event of a fee dispute, or upon your request.

5. You are entitled to have your questions and concerns addressed promptly and to receive a prompt reply to your letters, telephone calls, emails, faxes and other communications.

6. You are entitled to be kept reasonably informed as to the status of your matter and are entitled to have your attorney promptly comply with your reasonable requests for information, including your requests for copies of papers relevant to the matter. You are entitled to sufficient information to allow you to participate meaningfully in the development of your matter and make informed decisions regarding the representation.

7. You are entitled to have your legitimate objectives respected by your attorney. In particular, the decision of whether to settle your matter is yours and not your lawyer’s. (Court approval of a settlement is required in some matters.)

8. You have the right to privacy in your communications with your lawyer and to have your confidential information preserved by your lawyer to the extent required by law.

9. You are entitled to have your attorney conduct himself or herself ethically in accordance with the New York Rules of Professional Conduct.

10. You may not be refused representation on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin or disability.

Statement of Client’s Responsibilities:

1. The client is expected to treat the lawyer and the lawyer’s staff with courtesy and consideration.

2. The client’s relationship with the lawyer should be one of complete candor and the client should apprise the lawyer of all facts or circumstances of the matter being handled by the lawyer even if the client believes that those facts may be detrimental to the client’s cause or unflattering to the client.

3. The client must honor the fee arrangement as agreed to with the lawyer to the extent required by law.

4. All bills tendered to the client for services rendered pursuant to the agreed upon arrangement regarding fees and expenses should be paid when due.

5. A client who discharges the attorney and terminates the attorney-client relationship must nevertheless honor financial commitments under the agreed to arrangement regarding fees and expenses to the extent required by law.

6. Although the client should expect that his or her letters, telephone calls, emails, faxes and other communications to the lawyer will be answered within a reasonable time, the client should recognize that the lawyer has other clients who may be equally deserving of the lawyer’s time and attention.

7. The client should maintain contact with the lawyer, promptly notify the lawyer of any change in telephone number, address, email, or other electronic contact information, and respond promptly to a request from the lawyer for information and cooperation.

8. The client must realize that the lawyer is required to respect only legitimate objectives of the client and that the lawyer will not advocate or propose positions that are unprofessional or contrary to law or the New York Rules of Professional Conduct.

9. The lawyer may decline to accept a matter if the lawyer has previous personal or professional commitments that will prohibit the lawyer from devoting adequate time to representing the client competently and diligently.

10. A lawyer is under no obligation to accept a client if the lawyer determines that the cause of the client is without merit, a conflict of interest would

NEW JERSEY

Statement of Client’s Rights:

1. You are entitled to be treated with courtesy and consideration at all times by your lawyer and the other lawyers and personnel in your lawyer’s office.

2. You are entitled to an attorney capable of handling your legal matter competently and diligently, in accordance with the highest standards of the profession. If you are not satisfied with how your matter is being handled, you have the right to withdraw from the attorney-client relationship at any time. (Court approval may be required in some matters and your attorney may have a claim against you for the value of services rendered to you up to the point of discharge.)

3. You are entitled to your lawyer’s independent professional judgment and undivided loyalty, uncompromised by conflicts of interest.

4. You are entitled to be charged a reasonable fee and to have your lawyer explain at the outset how the fee will be computed and the manner and frequency of billing. You are entitled to request and receive a written bill from your attorney at reasonable intervals. You may refuse to enter into any fee arrangement that you find unsatisfactory.

5. You are entitled to have your questions and concerns addressed in a prompt manner and to have your telephone calls returned promptly.

6. You are entitled to be kept informed as to the status of your matter and to request and receive copies of papers. You are entitled to sufficient information to allow you to participate meaningfully in the development of your matter.

7. You are entitled to have your legitimate objectives respected by your attorney, including whether or not to settle your matter. (Court approval of a settlement is required in some matters.)

8. You have the right to privacy in your dealings with your lawyer and to have your secrets and confidences preserved to the extent permitted by law.

9. You are entitled to have your attorney conduct himself or herself ethically in accordance with the Code of Professional Responsibility.

10. You may not be refused representation on the basis of race, creed, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or disability.

Statement of Client’s Responsibilities:

1. The client is expected to treat the lawyer and the lawyer’s staff with courtesy and consideration.

2. The client’s relationship with the lawyer should be one of complete candor and the client should apprise the lawyer of all facts or circumstances of the matter being handled by the lawyer even if the client believes that those facts may be detrimental to the client’s cause or unflattering to the client.

3. The client must honor the fee arrangement as agreed to with the lawyer to the extent required by law.

4. All bills tendered to the client for services rendered pursuant to the agreed upon arrangement regarding fees and expenses should be paid when due.

5. A client who discharges the attorney and terminates the attorney-client relationship must nevertheless honor financial commitments under the agreed to arrangement regarding fees and expenses to the extent required by law.

6. Although the client should expect that his or her letters, telephone calls, emails, faxes, and other communications to the lawyer will be answered within a reasonable time, the client should recognize that the lawyer has other clients who may be equally deserving of the lawyer’s time and attention.

7. The client should maintain contact with the lawyer, promptly notify the lawyer of any change in telephone number, address, email, or other electronic contact information, and respond promptly to a request by the lawyer for information and cooperation.

8. The client must realize that the lawyer is required to respect only legitimate objectives of the client and that the lawyer will not advocate or propose positions that are unprofessional or contrary to law or the New Jersey Rules of Professional Conduct.

9. The lawyer may decline to accept a matter if the lawyer has previous personal or professional commitments that will prohibit the lawyer from devoting adequate time to representing the client competently and diligently.

10. A lawyer is under no obligation to accept a client if the lawyer determines that the cause of the client is without merit, a conflict of interest would exist or a suitable working relationship with the client is not likely.

RHODE ISLAND

Statement of Client’s Rights

As the client in a legal matter, you have the right to expect that:

1. Your attorney will handle your legal matter competently.

a. When hiring an attorney, you have the right to ask questions about the attorney’s education, training, and experience and expect that your attorney will remain current with recent developments in the law that relate to your matter.

2. Your attorney will charge you a reasonable fee and explain how it will be computed and when payments are expected from you.

a. If you are not a regular client, your attorney will give you a written statement before, or as soon as the work begins indicating the basis or rate of the fee you will be charged
b. If you are asked to pay a retainer, your attorney will explain how it will be spent and, if you ask, will provide you with a periodic written statement detailing how it has been spent.
c. If your attorney is working on a contingent-fee basis, your attorney will put in writing, in advance, what the attorney’s percentage will be, whether you will be billed for costs and expenses, and whether deductions will be taken from your settlement prior to calculating the fee.

3. Your attorney will work diligently for you and pursue the lawful means necessary to present or defend your case.

4. Your attorney will strive to resolve your legal matter promptly and will inform you if for any reason it cannot be resolved in a timely fashion.

5. Your attorney will respond to reasonable questions about the progress of your legal matter and will explain office policies to you to ensure satisfactory communication with you, including:

a. How to reach your attorney.
b. When and how your telephone calls will be returned.
c. How to obtain copies of paper/documents from your legal file.

6. Your attorney will exercise independent, professional judgment on your behalf free from any conflict of interest.

7. Most of your communications with your attorney are confidential. Your attorney will explain to you when the statements you make or secrets you reveal about your case cannot be kept confidential.

8. You have the right to make final decisions regarding your legal matter.

a. Your attorney will discuss the negotiation process with you and will agree to a settlement offer only if you have approved it.

9. Your attorney will explain to you, in advance, any major expenses anticipated in your legal matter.

10. Your attorney will tell you if other lawyers will be involved in your representation and how the cost to you for their involvement will be calculated.

11. When your fee is not a single, set amount, your attorney will give you periodic billings detailing your fees, costs, and expenses.

12. If legal fees will be applied against a settlement, your attorney will provide you with a final statement after the matter is concluded detailing what costs and expenses are being applied against your settlement and the amount you will receive

Statement of Client’s Responsibilities:

1. You will make a full and honest disclosure of all of the facts – good and bad – that relate to your legal matter and you will inform your attorney about any new facts or circumstances that may affect your case as they arise

2. You will adhere to your fee agreement with your attorney, pay your bills for all work that has been performed, and pay for all costs advanced for you. If you have any questions about your bill, you will discuss them with your attorney.

3. You will seek your attorney’s advice before discussing any information relating to your legal matter with others.

4. You will tell your attorney if you have any concerns or reservations about the advice you are being given.

5. You will be on time for all court hearings and appointments with your attorney or let your attorney know in advance if you cannot be on time.

6. If you cannot reach your attorney when you telephone the office, you will leave your name and phone number and a brief message.

7. You will complete the tasks requested by your attorney in a timely fashion or let your attorney know when you cannot.

8. You will discuss your expectations about what you want to accomplish in your legal matter with your attorney. When your expectations are not being met, you will talk to your attorney about it.

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