How do lawyers resolve ethical dilemmas in the everyday context of their practice? What are the issues that commonly arise, and how do lawyers determine the best ways to resolve them? Until recently, efforts to answer these questions have focused primarily on rules and legal doctrine rather than the real-life situations lawyers face in legal practice. The first book to present empirical research on ethical decision making in a variety of practice contexts, including corporate litigation, securities, immigration, and divorce law, Lawyers in Practice fills a substantial gap in the existing literature. Following an introduction emphasizing the increasing importance of understanding context in the legal profession, contributions focus on ethical dilemmas ranging from relatively narrow ethical issues to broader problems of professionalism, including the prosecutor's obligation to disclose evidence, the management of conflicts of interest, and loyalty to clients and the court. Each chapter details the resolution of a dilemma from the practitioner's point of view that is, in turn, set within a particular community of practice.
Timely and practical, this book should be required reading for law students as well as students and scholars of law and society.
Leslie C. Levin is professor of law at the University of Connecticut School of Law. Lynn Mather is professor of law and political science at the University at Buffalo Law School, State University of New York. She is coeditor of the Chicago Series in Law and Society and coauthor of several books, including Private Lawyers and the Public Interest.