Informal Opinion Number: 20030089

Rules: 4-8.1; 4-8.3
Maintaining the Integrity of the Profession
Bar Admission and Disciplinary Matters
Reporting Professional Misconduct

Reference Note: Effective July 1, 2007, Rule 4-8.1 was amended. This opinion is based on Rule 4-8.1 in effect prior to that date.

QUESTION: Attorney is a prosecuting attorney and has information that another attorney has committed criminal acts. The other attorney has not pleaded guilty or been convicted. Is Attorney obligated to report the other attorney’s acts? Would Attorney’s obligation change if the other attorney pleads guilty or is convicted?

ANSWER: Attorney has an obligation under Rule 4-8.3(a) to report the information to the Office of the Chief Disciplinary Counsel. Under Rule 4-8.1(b), Attorney has an obligation to report the ultimate outcome to OCDC, if requested by that office.

Informal Opinions are ethics advisory opinions issued by the Office of Legal Ethics Counsel to members of the Bar about Rule 4 (Rules of Professional Conduct), Rule 5 (Complaints and Proceedings Thereon), and Rule 6 (Fees to Practice Law) pursuant to Missouri Supreme Court Rule 5.30(c). Written summaries of select Informal Opinions are published for informational purposes as determined by the Advisory Committee of the Supreme Court of Missouri pursuant to Rule 5.30(c). Informal opinion summaries are advisory in nature and are not binding. These opinions are published as an educational service and do not constitute legal advice.

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