Although the trend of large law firms implementing and relying on their own in-house general counsel is nothing new, the general counsel office is becoming more influential as firms seek to enhance professionalism and ethics compliance within their practice.
Burns Figa & Will shareholder Alec Rothrock and Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck conflicts and ethics counsel Kati Rothgery both consult on ethics issues and potential conflicts of interest for lawyers, and they agree it’s much easier to provide guidance before a potential violation of the rules of conduct than to clean up the aftermath.
Rothgery previously worked with the Colorado Supreme Court’s Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel. She’s handled cases in-house and with the OARC and appreciates the proactive nature of her work now instead of what she calls “Monday morning quarterbacking.”
“It’s more [about] how we can chart the right course now so we don’t end up on the other side having to look back and wishing we could have done it differently,” Rothgery said.