Model Rules for Lawyers' Funds for Client Protection - Rule 9

RULE 9 IMMUNITY

The Trustees, employees and agents of the Board shall be absolutely immune from civil liability for all acts in the course of their official duties. Absolute immunity shall also extend to claimants and lawyers who assist claimants for all communications to the Fund.


Comment

Immunity from civil liability encourages lawyers and nonlawyers to serve on the Board, and protects their independent judgment in the evaluation of claims. Immunity also protects the fiscal integrity of the Fund, and encourages claimants and lawyers to participate in seeking reimbursement for eligible losses.

As a matter of public policy, immunity should attach to the Fund’s activities and proceedings in the same way that absolute immunity attaches in lawyer disciplinary proceedings.

In the absence of court rule or statute, immunity may not be available in proceedings involving voluntary funds. Insurance may therefore be required to protect Trustees, staffs, claimants, and the volunteer lawyers who assist claimants in processing their claims.


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