May 13, 2020 Feature

Indigenizing Professional Responsibility: The Role of Ethics in Tribal Courts

By Lauren van Schilfgaarde

The regulation of attorney practice, including the ability to discipline, is considered an inherent power of the judiciary.1 Tribal Courts, like federal and state courts, inherently possess this power. But while nearly all 50 states have adopted identical ethical obligations for their advocates,2 these rules, and the societal values underlying them, may not be a perfect fit for all Tribal jurisdictions.

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