Sex with Current Client and Other New Rules of Professional Conduct

Sex with Current Client and Other New Rules of Professional Conduct

The California Supreme Court approved new Rules on May 10, 2018 via Supreme Court Administrative Order 2018-05-09, and The Rules of Professional Conduct became effective on November 1, 2018.

Basically, a lawyer cannot have sex with a current client UNLESS there was a pre-existing consensual sexual relationship.  Thus:

  1.  They must have been having sex before the client became a client.
  2.  The previous sex must be consensual.

Rule 1.8.10 Sexual Relations with Current Client
(Rule Approved by the Supreme Court, Effective November 1, 2018)
(a) A lawyer shall not engage in sexual relations with a current client who is not the
lawyer’s spouse or registered domestic partner, unless a consensual sexual
relationship existed between them when the lawyer-client relationship
commenced.
(b) For purposes of this rule, “sexual relations” means sexual intercourse or the
touching of an intimate part of another person* for the purpose of sexual arousal,
gratification, or abuse.
(c) If a person* other than the client alleges a violation of this rule, no Notice of
Disciplinary Charges may be filed by the State Bar against a lawyer under this
rule until the State Bar has attempted to obtain the client’s statement regarding,
and has considered, whether the client would be unduly burdened by further
investigation or a charge.

Thus, if George Clooney ever became Amal’s client, their sexual relationship would pass muster under the new rules.

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