Debra Squires-Lee quoted in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly article, "Door to post verdict juror contact opening – New conduct code takes effect July 1"
Debra Squires-Lee, partner in the firm’s Litigation Department, co-chair of the Business Litigation and Professional Liability Practice Groups, and co-chair of the firm’s Mentoring Committee, was quoted in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly on April 20th 2015. The article, “Door to post verdict juror contact opening – New conduct code takes effect July 1,” takes a closer look at the Supreme Judicial Court’s changes to the Code of Professional Conduct that will be in effect July 1, 2015.
In her Interview with Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, Deb gives her thoughts on the upcoming changes to Rule 1.15 as well as practices that should be implemented in order to securely maintain client files.
From the article:
Debra A. Squires-Lee, a professional-liability attorney in Boston, said that the old rule was vague and that the extra guidance is welcomed. “A lack of good communication is almost always a part of a malpractice claim,” she said. “It’s usually just good business [to communicate].”
Further, a lawyer is required to “remedy false testimony and false statements,” an obligation that extends through final judgment or exhaustion of appeals. For Squires-Lee, that calls to mind the Ferguson, Missouri, prosecutor who learned after the fact that perjured testimony may have been presented to a grand jury that ultimately decided not to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown.
Squires-Lee said that Rule 1.15 has always laid down a straightforward, specific set of guidelines — now even more so — which lawyers at small firms and sole practitioners should “know by heart.” She suggested getting in the habit of reviewing the rule annually, if not more frequently.
Debra Squires-Lee, a professional-liability attorney in Boston, suggested three steps law firms should consider taking with regard to cybersecurity: auditing the outside entities, drafting agreements to bind non-lawyers to safeguard confidential information, and setting up a system that would indemnify the firm if a security breach were to occur.
“You can imagine a scenario in which, on a third-party server, there is sensitive scientific information, trade secrets or other confidential information,” she said. “Lawyers are the weak link in protecting that information. They need to double down on their vendors and are making sure they take every step [to safeguard it].”