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Report: Analysis of Rules That Enable Lawyers to Serve Self-Represented Litigants with Unbundling (ABA 2014)

This white paper found at has been prepared by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services. The purpose of the paper is to provide policy makers with information and analysis on the ways in which various states are formulating or amending rules of professional conduct, rules of procedure, and other rules and laws to enable lawyers to provide a limited scope of representation to clients who would otherwise proceed on a pro se basis, and to regulate that representation.

Specific policies cover: defining the scope of representation; clarifying communications between counsel and parties; creating parameters for the lawyer’s role in document preparation, including disclosure of the lawyer’s assistance; governing the entry of appearances and withdrawals for limited scope representation; and excusing conflicts checks for some limited scope services.

These specific issues are discussed below, following a brief background section. In addition, the white paper concludes with two appendices. Appendix A provides policy makers with aworksheet focused on the decisions that need to be addressed to enable lawyers to provide assistance to self-represented litigants. Appendix B includes the specific rules that are discussed throughout the paper.