Maintaining Competence Through Keeping Up With Technology

No Dinosaurs

Last year, the ABA adopted an amendment to ABA Model Rule of Professional Responsibility 1.1, comment 8, providing that “a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology . . . .” See ABA, Commission on Ethics 20/20 Resolution 105A (August 2012). On July 5, 2013, the Delaware Supreme Court created a new “arm of court”—the Delaware Commission on Law and Technology—to “develop and publish guidelines and best practices, regarding the use of technology and the practice of law, as they may relate to lawyer competence and client confidentiality.” See, Order, In re The Commission on Law and Technology (Del. July 1, 2013). In addition the commission will create a “knowledge bank of opinions and articles relating to ethical issues involving technology and the practice of law,” and present free ethics CLE programs relating to technology best practices.

This action by the Delaware Supreme Court is a welcomed message to practicing lawyers that keeping up with technological change is important in the practice of law. Louisiana should consider sending a similar message to its lawyers.

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