Professionalism Quiz

Published January 2013
by Matthew Zimmerman

To promote professional practice, in lieu of the regular column, the Professionalism Committee requested that I write a “funny and educational” professionalism quiz.  I failed.  Still, I hope that you will at least find the quiz educational.  Because this quiz is being provided to members of the Palm Beach County Bar Association (“PBCBA”), we are largely preaching to the choir.  And we hope that the answers will be obvious.  If not, please immediately exit Palm Beach County,  or you can check the answers below.  Good luck.

  1. The PBCBA Standards of Professional Courtesy (“Standards”) are:
    1. Standards?  What Standards?
    2. Aspirational.
    3. Mandated pursuant to Administrative Order.
    4. Apply only if dealing with a PBCBA member.

See Administrative Order No. 2.105-9/10. Standards can be seen at: palmbeachbar.org/spc.php.

  1. The Standards apply to whom?
    1. Standards?  What Standards?
    2. Only members of the PBCBA.
    3. Only lawyers with an office in Palm Beach County.
    4. To all counsel (and their staff) practicing law in the 15th Judicial Circuit.

See Administrative Order No. 2.105-9/10.

  1. Absent agreement of counsel, the required notice for hearings, whether special set or UMC, is:
    1. Dependent on how much notice opposing counsel has previously provided me.
    2. Five business days.
    3. One if by Fax; Two if by Sea.
    4. Five days.

See Standards, I.1.

  1. Before scheduling a deposition, I must coordinate with_____ to ensure a mutually convenient time:
    1. My spouse.
    2. My assistant.
    3. The rest of my foursome.
    4. Opposing counsel.

See Standards, I.2.

  1. I resolved my case two days before a four-hour special-set hearing, I should:
    1. Pop a bottle of champagne.
    2. Take the rest of the week off.
    3. Immediately notify the Court so that the time can be opened up.

See Standards, I.4.

  1. During an evidentiary hearing, I must cooperate with opposing counsel by disclosing the identities of all witnesses reasonably expected to be called and the length of time needed to present my entire case, unless:
    1. I am not from Palm Beach County.
    2. My client’s material rights would be adversely affected.
    3. It hurts my chances at success.

See Standards, I.6.

  1. Discovery responses should be:
    1. Timely, organized, complete and consistent with the obvious intent of the request.
    2. Mostly objections.
    3. Provided only after a Court Order.

See Standards, II.3.

  1. My client is being rude to opposing counsel.  I should:
    1. Give her a high-five.
    2. Do nothing, I can’t control my client.
    3. Impress upon her the need to be courteous and respectful, and not rude or disruptive.

See Standards, III.2.

  1. Before appearing before the Court, an attorney should:
    1. Keep his cell-phone ringer on.
    2. Be knowledgeable about the Administrative Orders, Local Rules and the Judge’s practices and procedures.
    3. Ensure that his socks match.

See Standards, III.5.

  1. A case conflicts with the authority I am arguing to the Court. What should I do?
    1. Raise the conflict only if asked by the Court.
    2. Inform the Court about the conflict and try to distinguish the opposing case.
    3. Nothing. It’s not my job to win the case for the other side.

See Standards, IV.1.

  1. At a hearing, I mistakenly told the Court that a party had been served.  After the hearing, I realized that the party had not been served.  I should:
    1. Not worry about it.  The hearing is over, the fact was not material, and the judge is busy with other matters.
    2. Immediately disclose or otherwise correct the misstatement by submitting something directly to the Court.
    3. File a notice of correction but no need to send to the Court.

See Standards, IV.1.

  1.  A few days before a hearing, I hand-delivered a memorandum, highlighted caselaw, and other materials to the court.  I should send to opposing counsel by:
    1. Mail.
    2. Substantially the same method of delivery by which it was provided to the Court.
    3. Pony Express.

See Standards, IV.2.

  1. I revised a proposed order and sent a copy to opposing counsel.  I should:
    1. Point out, redline or high-light the revisions for review prior to submission.
    2. Send the new draft but let opposing counsel figure out the changes for herself.
    3.  Submit the order without getting approval.

See Standards, IV.4.

  1. I only need 10 minutes to argue my side of a motion.  I may set the motion on UMC.
    1. True, there is usually extra time on UMC and opposing counsel can expedite her argument.
    2. False, sufficient time should be reserved to permit a complete presentation by counsel for all parties and UMC hearings are limited to 10 minutes per case.

See Local Rule No. 4(3); Standards, I.2.

  1. I filed a motion seeking relief that I know opposing counsel will not agree to.  I can set the matter for motion calendar upon prior notice and scheduling coordination.
    1. True, the notice and scheduling requirements have been met.
    2. False, before setting a matter on UMC, the attorney must attempt to resolve the matter in good faith.

See Local Rule No. 4(2); Administrative Order No. 3.202-9/08(1).

Answers:  1. c; 2. d; 3. b; 4. d; 5. c; 6. b; 7. a; 8. c; 9. b; 10. b; 11. b; 12. b; 13. a; 14. b; and 15. b