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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4-Witness-Advocate Rule

An outside lawyer assisting a client in a debt collection action cannot act as an advocate in the general district court proceeding if the lawyer testifies about the debt or files an affidavit about the debt (because either act would render the lawyer a "necessary witness"). Even if the defendant does not appear at the proceeding, the issue is not "uncontested" -- which eliminates one of the exceptions to the witness advocate rule.

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn