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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25-Dealing with Unrepresented People

57-In-House Lawyers

71-Representing Corporations

78-Communicating with an Employee of a Corporate Adversary

A lawyer may communicate directly with a former employee of an adverse party unless the lawyer knows that the former employee is represented by counsel. A corporation's lawyer may not simply advise a former employee that the lawyer is representing the former employee individually and direct the former employee not to speak with opposing counsel. Former employees have the right to choose their own counsel, and until they have done so the corporation's lawyer must treat them as unrepresented parties with potentially adverse interests (and thus may only advise them to secure counsel). [Rule 3.4(g) allows a lawyer to request that former employees of a corporate client "refrain from voluntarily giving relevant information to another party" under certain circumstances.]

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn