Ethics Help & Lawyer Assistance

Need help sorting out an ethical quandary? Help is just a phone call away!

The members of the CBA Ethics & Professional Responsibility Committee listed below will help you interpret your obligations under the Ohio Rules of Professional Conduct. Please note that questions posed should be framed hypothetically and relate to your own prospective conduct. The committee also accepts requests for written opinions.

April Ethics Hotline Attorneys

  • G. Todd Hoffpauir 513-768-5238
  • Terry Patterson 513-841-1495

Ethics inquiries may also be posed to CBA Bar Counsel by calling (513) 381-8213.

Never called the Ethics Hotline before? Wondering how it works? Click here! 

Health & Well Being Programming/Resources

The Health and Well-Being Committee serves the needs of attorneys as they strive to live life in balance amid the challenges of law practice. The Committee coordinates the monthly Balanced Living column in the CBA Report and produces quarterly Balanced Living Lecture Series. View article and lecture archive.

Inventory Attorney Program

Solo practitioners can prepare for the “What Ifs” of business life with the help of the CBA’s Inventory Attorney Program. By taking advantage of the program, you provide important information to the CBA that can be used to protect your clients and aid your family members, who may not know where to begin. And if none of the scary “what ifs” come to pass, the information that you compile and update will help you prepare to bring in a new associate or partner, sell your practice, or wind it down yourself.
The Inventory Attorney Program Checklist:
1. Considerations in Selecting an Inventory Attorney

  • Select a licensed Ohio attorney whom you trust.
  • Discuss what should be done in the event you are unavailable.
  • Explain where to find important documents, files and any other important information that may be specific to your practice (see suggested list below).
  • Don’t make your inventory attorney’s job more difficult than necessary. This is a great time to scrutinize your records management and retention policies.
  • Your inventory attorney does not need to be a person capable of handling all of your outstanding cases. They simply need to be able to close down your practice.
  • Inform the CBA, your office staff and family of your inventory attorney selection.

2. Suggested Information to Share with Your Inventory Attorney

  • Primary and satellite office addresses and access information
  • Staff names and duties
  • Landlord and lease information
  • Information on calendaring, billing, and case management systems      
  • Passwords
  • Contact information for key vendors such as accountant, payroll service, insurance agent and IT consultant               
  • Safety deposit box location                       
  • IOLTA and operating account numbers and location(s)               
  • Professional liability insurance carrier and policy number
  • Office insurance carrier and policies     

3. How to Participate in the CBA Inventory Attorney Program

  • Download a copy of the inventory attorney designation form.
  • Complete this form in collaboration with your designated inventory attorney.
  • Submit your completed designation form to the CBA.

The CBA will maintain a record of your designated inventory attorney. Questions? Please call (513) 699-1407.

Fee Disputes Between Lawyers

If you have a fee dispute with a lawyer over a shared fee, please submit a letter to Bar Counsel detailing the nature of the dispute. Be sure to attach a copy of the written agreement that is pertinent to the dispute. The information will be reviewed by the Fee Arbitration Committee.

Ethical Misconduct

If you have a professional obligation to report misconduct of another lawyer, please submit a letter with the information to Bar Counsel. The information will be reviewed by the Certified Grievance Committee. Information regarding the grievance process can be found here.

Ohio Lawyers Assistance Program

 OLAP provides confidential assistance to lawyers and law students in the areas of addiction and mental health.