Informal Opinion Number: 970192

Rules: 7.1
Information About Legal Services
Communication Concerning a Lawyer´s Services
Summary: confidentiality, fax line and machine, photocopier, conference room

QUESTION: Attorney enters into an office sharing arrangement. Attorney would have a separate telephone number, but the fax number would be the same. It would appear on business cards, letterhead and the bar directory. Would this be a problem? Should Attorney get a separate fax line as well? ANSWER: It is not required that Attorney have a separate fax line in an office sharing arrangement. However, Attorney must be able to assure confidentiality of materials received or sent on a shared fax machine. Similar concerns apply to other shared machines, such as a copy machine, and shared areas, such as a conference room.

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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