N.M. R. Prof'l. Cond. 16-603

As amended through September 28, 2021
Rule 16-603 - Membership in legal services organization

A lawyer may serve as a director, officer or member of a legal services organization, apart from the law firm in which the lawyer practices, notwithstanding that the organization serves persons having interests adverse to a client of the lawyer. The lawyer shall not knowingly participate in a decision or action of the organization:

A. if participating in the decision or action would be incompatible with the lawyer's obligations to a client under Rule 16-107 NMRA of the Rules of Professional Conduct; or
B. where the decision or action could have a material adverse effect on the representation of a client of the organization whose interests are adverse to a client of the lawyer.

N.M. R. Prof'l. Cond. 16-603

As amended by Supreme Court Order No. 08-8300-29, effective November 3, 2008.

Committee commentary. -

[1] Lawyers should be encouraged to support and participate in legal service organizations. A lawyer who is an officer or a member of such an organization does not thereby have a client-lawyer relationship with persons served by the organization. However, there is potential conflict between the interests of such persons and the interests of the lawyer's clients. If the possibility of such conflict disqualified a lawyer from serving on the board of a legal services organization, the profession's involvement in such organizations would be severely curtailed.

[2] It may be necessary in appropriate cases to reassure a client of the organization that the representation will not be affected by conflicting loyalties of a member of the board. Established written policies in this respect can enhance the credibility of such assurances.

[Adopted by Supreme Court Order No. 08-8300-29, effective November 3, 2008.]

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ANNOTATIONS The 2008 amendment, approved by Supreme Court Order No. 08-8300-29, effective November 3, 2008, in Paragraph A, added the reference to the Rules of Professional Conduct and in Paragraph B, added "or action". Compiler's notes. - The old ABA Comment was replaced by the 2008 committee commentary.