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them; for if more liberally resorted to, they beget doubts where none may have existed or strengthen those which before were only feebly felt.
17. Should I attain that eminent standing at the bar which gives authority to my opinions, I shall endeavor, in my intercourse with my junior brethren, to avoid the least display of it to their prejudice. I will strive never to forget the days of my youth, when I too was feeble in the law, and without standing. I will remember my tben ambitlous aspirations (though timid and modest) nearly blighted by the inconsiderate or rude and arrogant deportment of some of my senlors; and I will further remember that the vital spark of my early ambition might have been wholly extinguished, and my hopes forever ruined, had not my own resolutions, and a few generous acts of some others of my seniors, raised me from my depression. To my juniors, therefore, I shall ever be kind and encouraging; and never too proud to recognize distinctly that, on many occasions, it is quite probable their knowledge may be more accurate than my own, and that they, with their limited reading and experience, bave seen the matter more soundly than 1, with my much reading and long experience.
18. To my clients I will be faithful; and in their causes zealous and industrious. Those who can afford to compensate me, must do so; but I shall never close my ear or heart because my client's means are low. Those who have none, and who have just causes, are, of all others, the best entitled to sue, or be defended; and they shall receive a due portion of my services, cheerfully given.
19. Should my client be disposed to compromise, or to settle his claim, or defense, and especially if he be content with a verdict or judgment, that has been rendered, or, hav. ing no opinion of his own, relies with confidence on mine, I will in all such cases greatly respect bis wishes and real interests. The further prosecution, therefore, of the claim or defense (as the case may be), will be recommended by me only when, after mature deliberation, I am satisfied that the chances
are decidedly in his favor; and I will never • forget that the pride of professional opinion
on my part, or the spirit of submission, or of controversy (as the case may be), on that of my client, may easily mislead the judgment of both, and cannot justify me in sanctioning, and certainly not in recommending, the further prosecution of what ought to be regarded as a hopeless cause. To keep up the ball (as the phrase goes) at my client's ex. pense, and to my own profit, must be dishonorable; and however willing my cl may be to pursue a phantom, and to rely implicitly on my opinion, I will terminate the controversy as conscientiously for him as I would were the cause my own.
20. Should I not understand my client's
cause, after due means to comprehendit. will retain it no longer, but honestly conse it, and advise him to consult others, when knowledge of the particular case may poria's ably be better than my own.
21. The wealthy and the powerful shail bave no privilege against my client that dia not equally appertain to others. None slain be so great as to rise, even for a moment, above the just requisitions of the law.
22. Wben iny client's reputation is involind in the controversy, it shall be, if possibile, Judicially passed on. Such cases do not ad mit of compromise; and no man's elevaid standing shall induce me to consent to suis a mode of settling the matter: the amenide from the great and weulthy to the ignoble and poor should be free, full and open.
23. In all small cases in which I may lime engaged I will as conscientiously dischara my duty as in those of magnitude; always recollecting that “small" and "large" are to clients relative terms, the former being to a poor man wbat the latter is to a rich onr: and, as a young practitioner, not forgetting that large ones, which we have not, will never come, if the small ones, which we have, are neglected.
24. I will never be tempted bị any jes cuniary advantage, however great, nor love persuaded by any appeal to my feelings, how. ever strong, to purchase, in whole or in part, my client's cause. Should his wants be pressing, it will be an act of humanity 10 relieve them myself, if I am able, and if I am not, then to induce others to do so. But in no case will I permit either my benevolenie or avarice, bis wants or his ignorance, to seduce me into any participation of his pend. ing claim or defense. Cases may arise la which it would be mutually advantageous thus to bargain, but the experiment is too dangerous, and my rule too sacred, to admit of any exception, persuaded as I am that the relation of client and counsel, to be pre served in absolute purity, must admit of no such privilege, however guarded it may be by circumstances; and should the special case alluded to arise, better would it be that my client should suffer, and I lose a grant and honest advantage, than that any discretion should exist in a matter so extremely liable to abuse, and so dangerous in prerte dent.
And though I hare thus strongly worded my resolution, I do not thereby mean to re pudiate, as wholly inadmissible, the taking of contingent fees. On the contrary, thes are sometimes perfectly proper and are called for by public policy, no less than by human. ity. The distinction is very clear. A claim or defense may be perfectly good in law, and in justice, and yet the expenses of litigation would be much beyond the means of the claimant or defendant-and equally 80 as to counsel, who, if not thus contingently com. pensated in the ratio of the risk, might not be
rumpensated at all. A contingent fce looks in professional compensation only on the hinal result of the matter in favor of the dient. None other is offered or is attainablc. The claim or defense never can be made with. out such an arrangement. It is voluntarily andered, and necessarily accepted or rejectMd. before the institution of any proceedings.
It dows not from the influence of counsel orer client. Both parties have the option 10 be ost. No expenses have been incurred. No moness bave been paid by the counsel to the client. The relation of borrower and iruder, of vendor and vendee, does not subsist between them ; but it is an independent coctract for the services of counsel to be rendered for the contingent avalls of the matter to be litigated. Were this denied to the poor man, he could neither prosecute nor be defended. All of this differs essentially from the object of my resolution, which is against purcbasing, in whole or in part, my client's rights, after the relation of client and counsl, in respect to it, bas been fully established, after the strength of his case has become known to me, after his total pecuniary inability is equally known, after expenses have Iwen incurred which he is unable to meet, alter be stands to me in the relation of a debtor, and after he desires money from me in exchange for his pending rights. With this explanation I renew my resolution never po to purchase my client's cause, in whole or in part, but still reserve to myself, on proper occasions, and with proper guards, the professional privilege (denied by no law among us) of agreeing to receive a contingent compensation freely offered for services wholly to be rendered, and when it is the only means by which the matter can either be prosecuted or defended. Under all other circumstances, I shall regard contingent fees as obnoxious to the present resolution.
23. I will retain no client's funds beyond the period in which I can, with safety and case, put him in possession of them.
26. I will on no occasion blend with my own my client's money. If kept distinctly as bis it will be less liable to be considered as my own.
27. I will charge for my services what my judgment and conscience inform me is my due, and nothing more. If that be withheld it will be no fit matter for arbitration; for no one but myself can adequately judge of such services, and after they are successfully rendered, they are apt to be ungratefully forgotten.
I will then receive what the client offers, or the laws of the country may award; but in either case he must never hope to be again my client.
28. As a general rule I will carefully avoid wbat lg called the "taking of half fees." And though no one can be so competent as my. rell to judge wbat may be a just compensation for my services, yet when the quiddam honorarium has been established by usage or
law, I shall regard ils eminently dislionorable all underbidding of my professional brethren. On such a subject, however, no inflexible rule can be given to myself, except to be invariably guided by a lively recollection that I belong to an honorable profession.
29. Having received a retainer for contemplated services, which circumstances have prevented me from rendering, I shall hold myself bound to refund the same, as baving been paid to me on a consideration which has failed, and, as such, subject to restitution on every principle of law, and of good morals, and this shall be repaid not merely at the instance of my client, but ex mero motu.
30. After a cause is finally disposed of, and all relation of client and counsel seems to be forever closed, I will not forget that it once existed, and will not be inattentive to his Just request tbat all of his papers may be carefully arranged by me, and handed over to him. The execution of such demands, though sometimes troublesome, and inopportunely or too urgently made, still remains a part of my professional duty, for which I shall consider myself already compensated.
31. All opinions for clients, verbal or written, shall be my opinions, deliberately and sincerely given, and never venal and flattering offerings to their wishes or their vanity. And though clients sometimes have the fol. ly to be better pleased with having their views confirmed by an erroneous opinion than their wishes or hopes thwarted by sound one, yet such assentation is dishonest and unprofessional Counsel, in giving opinions, whether they perceive this weakness in their clients or not, should act as judges, responsible to God and man, as also especially to their employers, to advise them soberly, discreetly, and honestly, to the best of their ability, though the certain consequence be the loss of large prospective gains.
32. If my client consents to endeavors for a compromise of his claim or defense, and for that purpose I am to commune with the opposing counsel or others, I will never permit myself to enter upon a system of tactics, to ascertain who shall overreach the other by the most nicely balanced artifices of disingenuousness, by mystery, silence, obscurity, suspicion, vigilance to the letter, and all of the other machinery used by this class of tacticians to the vulgar surprise of clients, and the admiration of a few ill-judging lawyers. On the contrary, my resolution in such a case is to examine with great care, previously to the interview, the matter of compromise; to form a judgment as to what I will offer or accept; and promptly, frankly, and firmly to communicate my views to the adverse counsel. In so doing no lights sball be withheld that may terminate the matter as speedily and as nearly in accordance with the rights of my client as possible; although a more dilatory, exacting, and wary policy might finally extract something more than
my own or cren my client's hopes. Reputa. tion gained for this species of skill is sure to be followed by more than an equivalent loss of character; shrewdness is too often allieil to umtalmess, caution to severity, siJence to disingenuousness, wariness to exaction to make me covet a reputation based on such qualities.
33. What is wrong is not the less so from being common, And though few dare to be singular, even in a right cause, I am resolved to make my own, and not the conscience of others, my sole guide. What is morally wrong cannot be professionally right, however it may be sanctioned by time or custom. It is better to be right with a few, or even none, than wrong, though with a mul. titude. It, therefore, there be among my brethren any traditional moral errors of practice, they shall be studiously avoided by me, timugh in so doing I unbappily come in collision with what is (erroneously, I think) too often denominated the policy of the profession. Such cases, fortunately, occur but seldom; but, when they do, I shall trust to that moral firmness of purpose which shrinks from no consequences, and wbich can be intimidated by no authority, bowever ancient or respectable.
34. Law is a deep science. Its boundaries, like space, seem to recede as we advance; and though there be as much of certainty in it as in any other science, it is fit we sliould be modest in our opinions, and ever willing to be further instructed. Its acquisition is more than the labor of a life, and after all can be with none the subject of an unshaken confidence. In the language, then, of a late beautiful writer, I am resolv. ed to "consider my own acquired knowledge but as a torch flung into an abyss, making the darkness visible, and showing me the extent of my own ignorance." (Jameson.)
35. I will never be voluntarily called as a witness in any cause in wbich I am counsel. Should my testimony, however, be so material that without It my client's cause may be greatly prejudiced, he must at once use bis option to cancel the tie between us in the cause, and dispense with my further services or with iny evidence. Such a dilemma would be anxiously avoided by every delicate mind, the union of counsel and witness being usual. ly resorted to only as a forlorn hope in the agonies of a cause, and becomes particularly offensive when its object be to prove an admission made to such counsel by the opposite litigant. Nor will I ever recognize any distinction in this respect between my knowledge of facts acquired before and since the institution of the suit, for in no case will I consent to sustain by my testimony any of the matters which my interest and professional duty render me anxious to support. This resolution, however, bas no application whatever to facts contemporaneous with and relating merely to the prosecutios or defense
of the cause itsell, such as evidence maling to the contents of a paper unfortunately je? by myself or others, and such like mallosa which do not respect the original merits ? thic controversy, and which, in truth, as nothing to the once existing testimons, boy relates merely to matters respecting them conduct of the suit, or to the recovery of l evidence; nor does it apply to the case ne gratuitous counsel—that is, to those who have expressly given their services volue. tarily.
36. Every letter or note that is nders! to me shall receive a suitable response, and in proper time.
Nor shall it matter from whom it comes, what it seeks, or what may be the terms in which it is penned. Silenen can be justified in no case; and thoughi blive information sought cannot or ought not to be given, still decorum would require inima me a courteous recognition of the requires though accompanied with a firm withholding of what has been asked. There can be on surer indication of vulgar education than neglect of letters and notes. It manifesta a total want of that tact and amenity while intercourse with good society never fails to confer. But that dogged silence (worse than a rude reply) in wbich some of our profession indulge on receiving letters offensive to their dignity, or when dictated by ignorant impre tunity, I am resolved never to imitate, but will answer every letter and note with as much civility as may be due, and in as gowed time as may be practicable.
37. Should a professional brother, br hle industry, learning, and zeal, or even by some bappy chance, become eminently successful in causes which give bim large pecuniary emolu. ments, I will neither envy him the fruits of bis toils or good fortune, nor endearor bir any indirection to lessen them, but rather strive to emulate his worth, than enviously to brood over his meritorious success, and my own more tardy career.
38. Should it be my happy lot to rank with or take precedence of my seniors, who formerly endeavored to impede my onward course, I am firinly resolved to give them no cause to suppose that I remember the one, or am conscious of the other. When age and infirmities bave overtaken them, my kindness will teach them the loveliness of forgirenose, Those, again, who aided me when young in the profession shall find my gratitude in. crease in proportion as I become the better able to sustain myself.
39. A forensic contest is often no rery sure test of the comparative strength of the colore batants, nor should defeat be regarded as a just cause of boast in the victor, or of mortlo fication in the vanquished. When the min. troversy has been judicially settled against me, in all courts, I will not "fight the battle o'er again," coram non judice; por deavor to persuade others, as is too often done, that the courts were prejudiced, or to