By: Arend J. Abel, Attorney
Occasionally, a lawyer will run into a situation where someone other than the client agrees to pay the lawyer for the representation. This situation arises most frequently with insurance, but also can occur when a company pays for an employee’s defense or a relative pays for the representation of an individual. Third-party payment creates ethical issues for the lawyer, and is specifically governed by the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct. Rule 1.8(f) provides:
A lawyer shall not accept compensation for representing a client from one other than the client unless:
(1) the client gives informed consent;
(2) there is no interference with the lawyer’s independence of professional judgment or with the client-lawyer relationship; and
(3) information relating to representation of a client is protected as required by Rule 1.6.