Ohio Conduct Rules

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Long Title: 
Ohio Rules of Professional Conduct
Published/Promulgated by
Name of entity: 
Ohio Supreme Court
Type of entity: 
Jurisdiction within country: 
Who is subject to this regulation?: 
Lawyers generally

The Ohio Rules of Professional Conduct are rules of reason. They should be interpreted with reference to the purposes of legal representation and of the law itself. Some of the rules are imperatives, cast in the terms “shall” or “shall not.” These define proper conduct for purposes of professional discipline. Others, generally cast in the term “may,” are permissive and define areas under the rules in which the lawyer has discretion to exercise professional judgment. No disciplinary action should be taken when the lawyer chooses not to act or acts within the bounds of such discretion. Other rules define the nature of relationships between the lawyer and others. The rules are thus partly obligatory and disciplinary and partly constitutive and descriptive in that they define a lawyer’s professional role. Many of the comments use the term “should.” Comments do not add obligations to the rules but provide guidance for practicing in compliance with the rules.

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