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209.7 sec. 1 - Ethics & Integrity for Law Firm Lawyers and Business Clients (Fall 2012)

Instructor: Michael Ross  (view instructor's teaching evaluations | profile)
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Units: 2
Meeting Time: TuTh 3:35-5:45
Meeting Location: 134

Course Start: October 09, 2012
Course End: November 15, 2012
Course Control Number (Non-1Ls): 49514

In numerous corporate scandals, we have seen formerly upstanding attorneys, accountants and business executives become defendants in massive shareholder class actions, targets of civil and criminal investigations and defendants in criminal prosecutions. Avoiding “Club Fed” starts with consistently making sound ethical choices throughout a career.

We will discuss recurring situations in which ethical issues arise for attorneys and their clients. Many situations will come from recent media reports; others will come from the less publicized dilemmas that often confront young professionals. Our focus will be on the private practice of law and business clients. We will consider how people make ethical choices and identify some of the sources for ethical standards in society today.

Identifying ethical issues and reaching ethical conclusions is only the beginning. The real challenge for many young professionals is finding practical solutions to dilemmas. The class discussion will help students understand that they are not alone in facing these problems and that there are practical alternatives to “going along” with conduct that they sense is not right. We will explore practical steps and arguments that may encourage ethical conduct and possibly avoid daunting confrontations, the prospect of which often deters people from raising ethical issues when they should.

Although the text and class discussion will include applicable ABA rules, rules alone or with the benefit of cases, are rarely adequate to ensure ethical conduct. Accordingly, the seminar will explore analytic tools for successfully resolving ethical issues. Each student will pick his or her own topic for the final paper and address ethical issues in a context that is of interest to the student.

Biographical Information

Michael C. Ross is an adjunct professor at the University of Virginia and University of California Berkeley law schools. He is a member of the Advisory Boards of the University of Virginia’s Institute of Practical Ethics and Public Life, and the Berkeley Center of Law, Business and the Economy. He is a member of the Affiliated Transnational Faculty of the Peking University School of Transnational Law. For more than ten years, Mr. Ross was a panelist at Stanford Law School’s Directors’ College. He has recently taught international business law/transactions at Dubrovnik International University. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the California Shakespeare Theater.
Mr. Ross is a former corporate partner at Latham & Watkins, where he specialized in mergers and acquisitions, and former Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Safeway Inc.

This course satisfies the Professional Responsibility Requirement.

Exam Notes: P
Course Category: Business Law
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility

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Required Books are in blue

  • Ethics & Integrity in Law & Business -- Avoiding 'Club Fed'"
    Michael C. Ross
    ISBN: 9780769846910
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: To Be Determined

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