Whose Clients Are They? Contacting Putative Class Members

Cara E. Greene and Jill Maxwell, Labor and Employment Law, Vol. 35, No. 3, Spring 2007

The prosecution and defense of class actions involve an abundance of ethical considerations. Attorneys must balance zealous advocacy with the governing rules of professional responsibility. For instance, ex parte communications are often an effective and cost-conscious way to glean information, but attorneys on both sides must consider whether contact with putative class members is permissible and, if so, what form that contact may take. With a little forethought, however, lawyers can ensure that they do not overstep ethics rules when contacting putative class members.