Ethics Issues Regarding Client_Requested Retainer Provisions

Friday, June 3

(2:00 - 3:20pm)

Moderator: Thomas Wilkinson
Panelists: Hope A. Comisky, Ronald C. Minkoff, Ann M. Ostrander

In recent years, organizational clients have become increasingly more demanding of their lawyers and law firm, insisting on all manner of reasonable and unreasonable provisions in their engagement terms and outside counsel guidelines. Commonly-demanded provisions include sweeping definitions of client identity to include dozens or hundreds of corporate affiliates uninvolved in the matter, provisions redefining conflicts of interest more broadly than the ethics rules, including positional conflicts of interest, provisions claiming ownership and copyright protection for a law firm’s work product, indemnification provisions, authority to conduct audits, and security requirements. A panel experienced in the current give-and-take between clients and lawyers will examine both the substance and process of dealing with these provisions.


  1. Returning the Clients File - A Practical Guide
  2. Hillman Rhodes Client Files Digital Practices
  3. Outside Counsel Guidelines Article