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Rule 7.1. Communications Concerning aLawyer's Services.

(a) A lawyer shall not make a false ormisleading communication about the lawyer or the lawyer's services. Acommunication is false or misleading if it:

(1) contains amaterial misrepresentation of fact or law, or omits a fact necessary to makethe statement considered as a whole not materially misleading;

(2)is likely to create an unjustified or unreasonable expectation about resultsthe lawyer can achieve or has achieved; or

(3) contains atestimonial or endorsement that violates any portion of this Rule.

(b) A lawyer shall not interact with aprospective client in a manner that involves coercion, duress, or harassment.

Comments

[1] This Rule governs all communicationsabout a lawyer's services. Whatever means are used to make known alawyer's services, statements about them must be truthful.

[2] Truthful statements that are misleadingare also prohibited by this Rule. A truthful statement is misleading if itomits a fact necessary to make the lawyer?s communication considered as a wholenot materially misleading. A truthful statement is also misleading if there isa substantial likelihood that it will lead a reasonable person to formulate aspecific conclusion about the lawyer or the lawyer?s services for which thereis no reasonable factual foundation.

[3] By way of example, this Rule permitsthe following, so long as they are not false or misleading: publicdissemination of information concerning a lawyer?s name or firm name, address,email address, website, and telephone number; the kinds of services the lawyerwill undertake; the basis on which the lawyer?s fees are determined, includingprices for specific services and payment and credit arrangements; the use ofactors or dramatizations to portray the lawyer, law firm, client, or events; thecourts or jurisdictions where the lawyer is permitted to practice, and otherinformation that might invite the attention of those seeking legal assistance.

[4] An advertisement that truthfullyreports a lawyer?s achievements on behalf of clients or former clients may bemisleading if presented so as to lead a reasonable person to form anunjustified expectation that the same results could be obtained for otherclients in similar matters without reference to the specific factual and legalcircumstances of each client?s case. Similarly, an unsubstantiated comparisonof the lawyer?s services or fees with the services or fees of other lawyers maybe misleading if presented with such specificity as would lead a reasonableperson to conclude that the comparison can be substantiated. The inclusion ofan appropriate disclaimer or qualifying language may preclude a finding that astatement is likely to create unjustified expectations or otherwise mislead thepublic.

[5] A lawyer can communicate practice areasand can state that he or she ?specializes? in a field based on experience,training, and education, subject to the ?false or misleading? standard setforth in this Rule. A lawyer shall not state or imply that the lawyer iscertified as a specialist in a particular field unless the lawyer has beencertified as a specialist by an objective entity and the name of the entity isclearly identified in the communication. ??

[6] In order to avoid coercion, duress, orharassment, a lawyer should proceed with caution when initiating contact withsomeone in need of legal services, especially when the contact is ?live,?whether that be in-person, face-to-face, live telephone and other real-timevisual or auditory person-to-person communications, where the person is subjectto a direct personal encounter without time for reflection

[7] Firm names, letterhead and professional designationsare communications concerning a lawyer?s services. A firm may be designated bythe names of all or some of its current members, by the names of deceased orretired members where there has been a succession in the firm?s identity or bya trade name if it is not false or misleading.?A lawyer or law firm also may be designated by a distinctive websiteaddress, social media username or comparable professional designation that isnot misleading. A law firm name or designation is misleading if it implies a connectionwith a government agency, with a deceased lawyer who was not a former member ofthe firm, with a lawyer not associated with the firm or a predecessor firm,with a nonlawyer or with a public or charitable legal services organization. Ifa firm uses a trade name that includes a geographical name such as ?SpringfieldLegal Clinic,? an express statement explaining that it is not a public legalaid organization may be required to avoid a misleading implication.

[8] A law firm with offices in more than onejurisdiction may use the same name or other professional designation in eachjurisdiction.

[9] Lawyers may not imply or hold themselves out aspracticing together in one firm when they are not a firm, as defined in Rule1.0(d), because to do so would be false and misleading.

[10] It is misleading to use the name of a lawyerholding public office in the name of a law firm, or in communications on thelaw firm?s behalf, during any substantial period in which the lawyer is notpracticing with the firm. A firm may continue to use in its firm name the nameof a lawyer who is serving in Utah?s part-time legislature as long as thatlawyer is still associated with the firm.

[11] See Rules 5.3 (duties of lawyers andlaw firms with respect to the conduct of non-lawyers); Rule 8.4(a) (duty toavoid violating the Rules through the acts of another); and Rule 8.4(e) (prohibitionagainst stating or implying an ability to influence improperly a governmentagency or official or to achieve results by means that violate the Rules ofProfessional Conduct or other law).

[12] This Rule differs from the ABA ModelRule. Additional changes have been made to the comments.

 

 

EffectiveAugust 14, 2020