The Friday Whine is a casual email to friends and colleagues and contains two things: An ethics update, and a wine recommendation. If you see text in blue, it is a link to an article or information.
Referral Fees Are Illegal In Florida
No, this is nothing new. It’s right there, in the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar.
What is permitted are “partial participation” fees. This means a lawyer can receive 25% of a fee in a case where the lawyer participates in the representation. The partially participating lawyer must be on the retainer agreement and have consent of the client – and partially participate. If the lawyer does more than the basics (reviewing the file, consulting with the client), the lawyer can receive more than 25%, but that agreement is done at the outset of the representation.
And I know, the way it’s often done is not in compliance with the Rule.
A lawyer makes a call, “refers” the case, and gets a “referral” fee, for doing nothing more than making the call. No one complains, nothing bad happens.
But that’s not ethical.
If you’re bored beyond belief, you can take a gander at the 12 pages the Florida Bar has written on this issue.
I know, this is why I’m bad at parties.
Anyway, a Florida lawyer got a $500,000 lesson in how this all works.
A quick signature on a retainer agreement, and consent of the client, would have gone a long way.
Got Anymore Super Bowl Wine Picks, Because I’m Going Sunday Morning To Get My Wine
Let’s start with some food pairings.
And here’s some more recommendations (some “greatest hits” included) of bottles to pop open and have sitting around:
LaMarca Prosecco (the $12 wonder)
Burgans Albarino (a Spanish white that’s great with food)
Educated Guess Cabernet (this will stun you for $20)
And if you actually care if either the Patriots or Rams win and want to drink the good stuff:
Austin Hope Cabernet (Paso Robles)
Biale Zinfandel Black Chicken*