I found the earlier comment about Miers needing a crash course in constitutional law interesting. In light of the recent NJ Supreme Court decision in R.M. v. New Jersey Supreme Court, 2005 N.J. LEXIS 1140, do the New Jersey Professional Responsibility Rules Committee
(PRRC) and the New Jersey State Bar Association need a crash course in First Amendment law?
The Bar Association wanted to protect the reputation of lawyers charged, but not found guilty, of infractions. In New Jersey, most lawyers escape. According to the Office of Attorney Ethics, there were 1,703 grievances docketed and investigated in 2003. Formal complaints -- the point at which the process now is opened -- totaled 196. That same year, there were 193 discipline
sanctions imposed and 51 matters diverted from the system with guilt
admitted to minor infractions in exchange for avoiding public discipline.
I'll be discussing the general issue in the November 2005 issue of Intellectual Property Today. It does seem that a lot of real problems are swept under the rug.