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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35-Threatening Criminal and Disciplinary Action

The Model Rules do not prohibit a lawyer from using or threatening criminal prosecution to gain an advantage for a client in a civil matter as long as: the criminal matter is related to the civil claim; the lawyer has a well-founded belief that the civil claim and the criminal charges are warranted by law and facts; the lawyer does not attempt to exert or suggest improper influence over the criminal process.

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn