Proposed | amendments to Paragraph 13-12 & 13-30 regarding disclosure of exculpatory evidence (Comments due by August 15, 2014)
Amendments to Paragraph 13-12 and 13-30 regarding disclosure of exculpatory evidence considered confidential under Paragraph 13
On May 7, 2014, the Committee on Lawyer Discipline (COLD) approved amendments to Part Six, Section IV, Paragraph 13 of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia. The proposed Paragraph 13-30.M clarifies bar counsel’s obligation to disclose certain information notwithstanding rules that proscribe such disclosure on the basis that the information is confidential. Paragraph 13-12.H addresses the notice required when information is disclosed as anticipated in proposed Paragraph 13-30.M.
13. PROCEDURE FOR DISCIPLINING, SUSPENDING, AND DISBARRING ATTORNEYS
13-12 SUBSTANTIAL COMPLIANCE, NOTICE AND EVIDENTIARY RULINGS, AND ADDRESS NOTIFICATION
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1. Whenever any notice or other writing to be directed to an Attorney is required or permitted under this Rule, such notice or other writing shall be deemed effective when mailed by first class mail to the Attorney at the Attorney’s last address on record for membership purposes with the Bar or, if the Attorney is a Foreign Lawyer, a lawyer engaged pro hac vice in the practice of law in Virginia, or a lawyer not admitted in Virginia, when mailed by first class mail to the last known address on record with the Bar or, if no such address is on record, then to the Clerk of the Supreme Court of Virginia.
2. Whenever any notice or other writing is to be directed to a Complainant is required or permitted under this Rule, such notice or other writing shall be deemed effective when mailed by first class mail to the Complainant at the Complainant’s last known address with the Bar.
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13-30 CONFIDENTIALITY OF DISCIPLINARY RECORDS AND PROCEEDINGS
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M. Disclosure of Exculpatory Evidence. Bar Counsel shall comply with the duty to disclose exculpatory evidence under these rules regardless of whether the information is considered confidential under Paragraph 13-30. The Attorney or Complainant who is the subject of the disclosure shall be notified whenever this information is transmitted pursuant to this subparagraph unless Bar Counsel decides that giving this notice will prejudice a disciplinary investigation.
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Comments or questions should be submitted in writing to Executive Director, Virginia State Bar, 1111 East Main Street, Suite 700, Richmond, Virginia 23219-3565, no later than August 15, 2014. The Virginia State Bar Council will consider the proposed amendments when it meets on October 24, 2014.
Updated: May 9, 2014