An attorney is a representative of clients, administrator of the authorized structure, and a community national comprising particular duty for the quality of fairness. As a legal agent of clients, an attorney carries out different functions. As a counselor, an attorney gives a client a well-versed comprehension of the client's lawful civil rights and requirements and clarifies their convenient repercussions. As an advocate, an attorney keenly confirms the client's status under the regulations of the opposition scheme.
Disclosure is a major issue in the criminal justice structure and the implementation of appropriate and just disclosure is a fundamental for a reasonable criminal justice structure. The "principle" is that justice necessitates that full revelation should be made of all evidence and facts prepared by the prosecution, whether that material strengthens or weakens the case of the defense. Investigators should be always aware of the requirement they intend to convey and prosecutors to the requirement to unveil material, in the welfare of righteousness and justice in the specific conditions of any case, following the beginning of measures but prior to the emerging of duties under the Act. For example, discovery must be comprised of important information, which is capable of allowing the defense to dispute the interment measures. When the requirement for such revelation is unclear to the prosecutor, any discovery will rely on what the charged decides to unveil about the defense. I all cases, the attorney should think about disclosing in the benefits of fairness any matter, which is significant to judgment. Attorneys must try hard to allow for accurate disclosure, as part of their broad and individual vocational duty to work fairly and without prejudice, in the benefits of fairness and in line with the law. Attorneys should also realize the necessity to present counsel to their clients, and where crucial, investigate actions committed (U.S. Department of Army, 1992).
As a court attorney appointed for an alleged murderer, a dilemma occurred amid the trial and I was afflicted by a highly embarrassing and complex ethical situation. During one of my meetings with the client, the accused discloses the fact one week ago he abducted a 5 year old boy from a local playground, murdered him and buried the remains behind his house. After conducting an interview with my client, I have found an article in a local newspaper where a mother is pleading for information about her missing son. I am currently and seriously faced with an ethical dilemma. The information I received was provided in confidence during my meeting with my client, and I would be disbarred if I revealed this information.
The situation I am faced with is extremely difficult and intricate. Though trying to persuade my client to confess his crime will likely end with failure, I will try my very best to convince him to admit his crime and make him acknowledge the fact that even if he gets away with the current trial, evidence will emerge again in the future and perhaps the case will be re-opened. An attorney might not advise a client to participate, or help a client, in demeanor that the attorney knows is illegal or falsified. Nevertheless, an attorney might argue the legal repercussions of any suggested course of behavior with an accused, and might advise or help a client to exert a good faith attempt to decide on the soundness, possibility, significance, or implementation of the law. I will resort to all rational arguments in order to make him admit. Moreover, I cannot suddenly play the role of the good and convey the evidence to the court. First, I will be disbarred from my profession, and this is the last thing I will try to do since my career would be on the line, and especially that I know my client is guilty. Second, I must bear in mind the probability that my client might be lying as a result of psychological disturbances or maybe drugs. Presenting unsure and invalid evidence to the judge will not just suspend my profession, but even deteriorate my professional reputation as an attorney. Furthermore, according to the client-attorney confidential relationship, I cannot disclose any information that might breaks this confidentiality and harm my client (Brady v. Maryland, 1963).
Therefore, after ruling out the actions of persuading my client to admit and disclosing what my he has confessed, and after profoundly and ethically thinking about society and the integrity of my work as a legal representative assigned to preserve the fair course of the law, I do not have any option but to withdraw from the case.
According to Florida Rules of Professional Conduct, and as stated in subdivision (c), an attorney might withdraw from standing for an alleged murderer if withdrawal can be achieved devoid of material negative impact on the benefits of the client, or if (Cornell University Law School, 2013):
- 1. The client decides on continuing in behavior relating to the attorney's services that the attorney rationally deems is criminal or falsified;
- 2. The client has exploited the attorney's services to carry out a crime or deception;
- 3. A client intends to keep following a certain action that is deemed revolting or irresponsible by the attorney;
- 4. The accused considerably fail to realize a requirement to the attorney concerning the attorney's services and has received rational caution that the legal representative will withdraw, and stay if those requirements have been met;
- 5. The representation has been made irrationally hard by the client;
- 6. Further valid and substantial reason for withdrawal occurs.
Consequently, and in the condition I am stranded in, and after I tried to convey to the client the seriousness and danger of continuing to represent him amid knowing that he is absolutely guilty, I will be facing the issue of a client persistence in an intention and action that I extensively consider revolting and irresponsible and that all the ethics I have been practicing throughout my career will be on the line if he insists on retaining the case. Another cause for my withdrawal will be the reluctant behavior of my client and his insistence to commit to his attitude, which I believe is criminal and falsified. During that stage, I am obligated, by my ethics and professional values, to withdraw from the case and furthermore present my substantial causes of withdrawal to the judge. By taking this route of conduct, I will be liberating myself from this huge burden and additionally releasing myself from this ethical dilemma (Meagher, 2001).
Upon my withdrawal from this representation, I shall also take the requisite and rationally practical initiatives to preserve my client's benefit, such as providing him with a sound notice and thus allowing him to acquire the necessary time to recruit a new advocate, handing him documents and belongings to which he is entitled to, and compensating any down-payment of unearned charges. However, I have the right to keep hold of files and other belongings pertaining to the client based on the degree sanctioned by law.