NUMBER 230 1925

Question. A woman, now an infant, was married without the consent of either parent; a lawyer has been retained by her father to procure a decree of annulment, adequate cause existing.

The husband, an adult, is anxious to have the marriage annulled, and has addressed a letter to the wife volunteering to pay all expenses, In the opinion of the Committee may the lawyer, without professional impropriety, communicate with the husband and arrange with him, in behalf of the wife and her father, to accept and carry into effect the husband’s offer?


Answer. It is the opinion of the Committee that it is not improper for the husband, in these circumstances, to contribute toward the expenses of the suit for annulment, Consequently, the lawyer may, without professional impropriety, communicate with the husband and make the arrangement suggested. He should previously make sure that his procedure is approved by the father and by the daughter (if she is then mentally competent), and he should make clear to the husband that he does not represent or act for the husband, or assume any professional obligation toward him. We regard it as essential, however, that the lawyer should, at the time of trial, communicate alt of the facts of employment and compensation of the trial court, and we assume that the arrangement is not to be contingent upon the success of the suit.