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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LEO NumTopicsSummary

16-Lawyer's Personal Interests

50-Lawyer-Owned Businesses

66-Lawyers Acting as "Scriveners"

Lawyers may be shareholders of a corporation providing mediation and arbitration services, but the lawyers must comply with the ethics code. Among other things, a mediator "engaged by the parties as a scrivener of the agreement reached during the mediation process" is not engaged in the practice of law, but any services "beyond those of a scrivener" might constitute the practice of law [superseded in LEO 1803, which held that the existence of an attorney client relationship depends on the lawyer's action rather than a mere title, and holding that the attorney client relationship would arise between prisoners and lawyers practicing at a state prison if the lawyers did anything more than simply typing up what the prisoner wrote].

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn