These summaries were prepared by McGuireWoods LLP lawyer Thomas E. Spahn. They are based on the letter opinions issued by the Virginia State Bar. Any editorial comments reflect Mr. Spahn's current personal views, and not the opinions of the Virginia State Bar, McGuireWoods or its clients. 
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3-Multiple Representations on the Same Matter

4-Witness-Advocate Rule

61-Lawyers Acting as Executors

76-Trust and Estate Lawyers

A decedent died after transferring accounts and placing items in a safety deposit box. Plaintiff challenges the transfer and disputes ownership of the safety deposit box's contents. The plaintiff has sued both administrators -- one of which is a lawyer. The same firm cannot represent both administrators if there is a dispute between them about the transfer or the ownership of the box's contents. The lawyer-administrator's partner may undertake the representation even if the lawyer must be a witness, as long as the issues do not relate to the firm or its legal work, and provided that the lawyer does not intend to perform any advocacy functions in the future.

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn