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    5 апреля 2017

    Criminal legal risks for lawyers

    The Ukrainian Bar Association’s Committee on Criminal Law & Procedure held a meeting dedicated to criminal legal risks faced by advocates in the course of their professional activities. The keynote speaker of the meeting was Eugene Solodko, senior partner of Solodko & Partners.

    “Your enemy is your client”, the speaker stated, and explained that the client does not need services, as the client should feel comfortable. Therefore, in case of criminal prosecution, the client would try to shift responsibility onto his/her advocate. “For law-enforcement bodies you become accomplices because your services help your customer to cheat the state”, he said. According to the speaker, a similar problem exists for in-house lawyers.

    In order to protect lawyers in the course of performance of their professional duties, Mr. Solodko gave several tips.

    Firstly, filter what is written and said. Legal opinion should be in the form of options with consequences for dealing. You should speak as if you are answering the question already asked and controlling every step of your conversation. Ideally, it is worth considering the conversation with the client in advance. And, of course, sensitive conversations should be held face to face.

    Secondly, Mr. Solodko also drew attention to the fact that you need to be able to say “No” in your professional activity. It is a minus in monetary terms but a big plus for safety. Regarding  payment, the speaker called for being fair and noted that the lawyer should consider with the client all the services and work that will later be included in the bill.

    Of course, he outlined the importance of devoting time to the issue of safe work with evidence, and advised that the evidence provided by the client be checked thoroughly. And, if necessary, before accepting an instruction from a potential client, the advocate should conduct his/her own investigation.

    Summing up the meeting, Eugene Solodko compared the criminal case to a litmus test for business. Successful companies will get it faster and less successful ones a little slower.

    http://www.ujbl.info/article.php?id=930