Legal Issues in the Firm Essay

2500 Words Apr 4th, 2013 10 Pages
In the 1993 legal thriller “The Firm,” Tom Cruise plays a young attorney, Mitch McDeere, who has accepted an offer to join the prestigious Memphis law firm of Bendini, Lambert & Locke (“The Firm”). Initially, McDeere and “The Firm” appear to be a perfect fit. McDeere is the prototypical young associate. About to complete his Harvard Law degree, McDeere has the soft skills, attractive appearance, and a fetching personality to accompany his intellect. Accordingly, many law firms actively recruit him, seducing him with gifts and praise. The Firm, despite its location in Memphis, seems like a logical choice for McDeere. They pay handsomely, boast a talented legal team, and enjoy decadent facilities and amenities. McDeere is coddled zealously …show more content…
In the beginning of the film, McDeere makes a wise choice by choosing to cooperate with the FBI.
Had he refused to cooperate and return to his firm with no further action, it is likely that he would have failed to maintain the integrity of the profession by violating Rule 8.4. Rule 8.4(a) explains that it is professional misconduct for a lawyer to violate or attempt to violate the Rules of Professional Conduct . . . through the acts of another (aka the acts of other members of the firm). engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation. Also, he would have knowingly been engaging in conduct that involves dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation (namely, helping members of the mafia launder money). This in turn would have violated 8.4(b) because as Comment 2 indicates, many kinds of illegal conduct reflect adversely on fitness to practice law. In the past, even acts of adultery (which McDeere was set up to commit while on a work trip in the Cayman Islands) might have been interpreted as having a negative implication on the practice. Today, however, offenses of personal morality are separated from offenses that have specific connection to the fitness for the practice of law.
Moreover, it may also be the case that McDeere continued practice with the firm would violate Rule 1.2. That is, 1.2(d) states that a lawyer is prohibited from counseling a client to engage, or otherwise assist that

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