Elementary, My Dear Watson? Deciphering the Professional Responsibility of a Lawyer/Invesigator

Friday, June 3

(3:40 - 5:00pm)

Moderator: Donald Lundberg
Panelists: James Becker, Sarah Duggin, Kenneth Wainstein

Lawyers led the high profile investigations of the Pennsylvania State child sex abuse scandal, the allegations of academic fraud at the University of North Carolina, and the NFL’s "deflategate.” But lawyers are frequently asked to participate in more quotidian investigations of alleged misconduct by employers, government agencies, and corporations. When asked to take on this role, who is the lawyer’s client? Are the duties of confidentiality, loyalty and diligence owed to the party paying the legal fees, third parties, or to the public? What investigative tactics are outside the ethical boundaries? What happens if the party who hired the lawyer refuses to release the investigative report? This panel will examine the ethical obligations of lawyers who take on investigations outside the judicial system.

“Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid. The detective must be a complete man and a common man and yet an unusual man. He must be, to use a rather weathered phrase, a man of honor.”
― Raymond Chandler


  1. GM Internal Investigation Report
  2. UNC - Final Report
  3. NCAA - Final Report
  4. Selected Model Rules of Professional Conduct
  5. South Berwyn Schools Opinion
  6. Baylor - Independent Investigation into Handling of Sexual Assault Accusations
  7. Bridgegate - Article and Wigenton Order
  8. Deflategate - Article and Berman Order
  9. FIFA - Michael Garcia Independent Investigation articles
  10. Penn State - Articles on role of In-house counsel
  11. UVA - Fallout from Rolling Stone Article