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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2-Adversity to Former Clients

6-Lawyers Paid by Third Party

18-Consent and Prospective Waivers


A mother who had an automobile accident in which her infant child was injured may not hire the same lawyer who represented her in a tort action against the other driver to also represent the child in the tort action, if there is a "non-frivolous claim" that could be filed against the mother in connection with the accident. Consent could cure this conflict, but the minor child cannot grant the consent, and the ability of the mother to grant the consent is a legal question beyond the Bar's purview. If there is no possible claim against the mother, then the mother can hire her lawyer to also represent the child, but must not direct or regulate the lawyer's professional judgment.

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn