Printed Letters: Sept. 9, 2015
Pugliese obligated to obey rules of conduct
Rose Pugliese’s legal problems may not end with two malpractice lawsuits and a possible violation of Colorado law regarding conflict of interest disclosure during a government hearing.
As a Colorado attorney, Pugliese must obey the Rules of Professional Conduct. The RPC offers lawyers extensive guidance to avoid conflicts. It appears from Sunday’s Sentinel story Pugliese drafted a will for a woman and when she died, a dispute arose among three daughters expecting property under the will. Then Pugliese represented two sisters, drafted an agreement and presented it to the third. All sisters claim Pugliese gave incorrect legal advice and are suing her. Was Pugliese representing the third sister? The third sister’s malpractice claim implies she thought so. What did Pugliese do, if anything, to make sure the third sister didn’t think she was a client?
RPC §1.7 states: “a lawyer may not represent multiple parties to a negotiation whose interests are fundamentally antagonistic….” Comment 28 states “[g]enerally, if the relationship between the parties has already assumed antagonism, the possibility that the clients’ interests can be adequately served by common representation is not very good.”
Colorado Bar Association Ethics Opinion 68 states: “A lawyer may not represent opposing parties in negotiations” unless they have previously and substantially agreed.
Most lawyers avoid such emotional situations like the plague. Multiparty representation is a minefield. Voting for a past client, one of the sisters suing Pugliese, in a government hearing, could also trigger an RPC ethics investigation.
The Supreme Court disciplines lawyers accused of ethics violations. There is no public information available whether the court’s disciplinary counsel has been informed or investigated Pugliese. Investigations are generally confidential unless discipline is ordered.
The particular facts of Pugliese’s possible conflicts are not clear. The question now is whether there is fire where there is smoke.
Kim Davis may be sincere, but she is hurting other people
Thank you for supporting our nation’s policy of the separation of church and state — otherwise referred to as religious freedom. You explained it well. Regardless of religious belief, an official of our country, state, county, or city, is obligated to fulfill the duties of that office. If there is a conflict, that official must make a choice that does not infringe on the rights of other citizens. Kim Davis may be sincere, but she is hurting other people.
It’s time for Christians to unite and fight for God-given rights
With no thanks to the Obama Administration, the U.S. Supreme Court, gays and lesbians, we are losing our rights as established by our Constitution.
The latest example is the case of Kim Davis; the Kentucky county clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples because it is against her belief that God does not condone same-sex marriage.
She is absolutely right, and consequently she is jailed because of her spiritual beliefs. Religious freedom in this country is rapidly coming to an end just as it has in many other countries where Christians are being persecuted and killed.
But before all anti-God advocates rejoice over your so-called victories, keep in mind that God’s judgment is ultimately coming. Think on this: If you are right and God and Davis are wrong, then you have nothing to worry about; but, if God and Davis are right, then you have everything to worry about. You may rejoice now, but at Judgment you will beg for God’s mercy. As a Christian who has placed his faith in Jesus Christ, I think the time is coming that I will be prohibited for submitting a letter to The Daily Sentinel or mentioning anything about God in public. It is way past time for all Christians to unite and fight for our God-given and Constitutional rights.
Will this country ever again see the light of day?
I read with interest, the recent article in your paper about the “more than three trillion trees now growing on Earth.” It gave perspective on just how much this country is in debt. If the 18 trillion-plus dollars we owe were trees, there would be more than six times the number of trees on Earth than there is now and three times more than there were before human civilization. With all that shade, will this country ever again see the light of day?
SUE C. HUGHEY