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Legal Ethics

Serving as a Witness

Serving as a Witness

Discover the special rules for attorneys serving as witnesses at trial and the potential conflicts that may arise.


When a lawyer at a trial suddenly takes the stand to serve as a witness, it can be confusing for a fact finder: is the lawyer making arguments and analysis, or is he making statements of fact? Model Rule 3.7 addresses this tension and provides guidelines for how and when a lawyer can take the stand. In this clip we will look at Rule 3.7’s prohibitions on lawyers acting as both advocate and witness in the same proceeding, and the issues of conflicts it can raise for a lawyer’s firm.