Identifying the Ethical System

You are an intern at an attorney’s office and you have been asked to prepare a memo in response to the following scenario:

  • You have been accompanying one of the attorneys in your office to visit a client in jail. You notice that the attorney has been requesting continuances in his case for frivolous reasons. This has kept the inmate in jail for a long time. You suspect this has to do with the fact that the attorney hasn’t received full payment for his work
  • The inmate discusses the problem with you, asking for your help. Upon being approached, the attorney explains the “Confidence Game,” or the need for putting informal pressure on clients to pay the required legal fees.

You must determine what your next steps will be.

Part 1:

Write an analysis report of four to five pages in Microsoft Word document analyzing the dilemma and how you will handle the problem:

  • Address if the attorney’s action was ethical.
  • Explain why you believe the inmate feels he can trust you.
  • Address if the legal code of the American Bar Association (ABA) was broken?
  • Explain why you chose to handle the incident in the manner in which you did.
  • Identify the ethical system you used to make your decision.

Part 2:

Are you a whistle-blower?

  • Explain when and how whistle-blowing is ethical.
  • Identify an ethical system that would consider whistle blowing a betrayal.
  • Identify an ethical system that would consider whistle blowing a public duty.
  • Would you consider reporting your colleague to a partner in the law firm or some other higher authority?
  • Would reporting your colleague be considered “whistle blowing?”

For information on the legal rules of conduct and whistleblowing, visit the following websites:

Support your responses with examples.

Cite any sources in APA format.

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