During spring break three students from Miami Law’s Professional Responsibility & Ethics Program (PREP) presented a CLE ethics presentation titled, “Legal Ethics & Digital Savvy in the Practice of Law” at the Key Biscayne Bar Association.
PREP develops customized CLE ethics trainings, providing an opportunity for students to explore diverse areas of the law and interact with attorneys practicing in those areas regarding the ethical challenges that confront today’s legal profession. The program combines the attributes of an ethics institute and an ethics clinic, and has dedicated hundreds of student hours to public service and has educated thousands of members of the Bench & Bar.
Under the direction of Professor Jan L. Jacobowitz, PREP fellow Janelly Crespo and PREP interns Vincent Calarco and Elizabeth Gil discussed “hot topic” issues regarding social media, attorney advertising, and legal ethics. They presented hypothetical fact scenarios, which prompted the attorneys to engage in a dynamic discussion about effective electronic communication, attorney advertising, and spoliation of social media evidence.
“I truly enjoyed presenting for the Key Biscayne Bar Association,” said Crespo. “All the attorneys were so engaged and interactive. As one of my final presentations with the PREP program, it was a rewarding experience.”
“As attorneys, we will be expected to understand the issues facing our clients,” said Calarco. “With PREP, practicing attorneys rely on us to update them on real ethical issues they may face. At the Key Biscayne Bar Association, I had the pleasure of educating attorneys about technology’s most recent impact on attorney advertising and solicitation--attorney's text messaging prospective clients.”
Describing her experience at the training, Gil said, “It was a unique opportunity for me as a law student to present to a room full of attorneys and speak as the ‘expert’ on the spoliation of social media evidence. I truly enjoyed interacting with the lawyers and providing my research on the newest changes occurring with social media and ethics.”
In 2012, PREP was recognized by the ABA with its E. Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award— the leading national award recognizing programs and projects contributing to the understanding and advancement of professionalism among lawyers and judges. In addition to presenting ethics trainings, throughout the semester PREP students publish blog posts regarding the nation’s newest ethics opinions and cases. The blog, Legal Ethics in Motion, can be found here.