Mr. A has been a client of mine for approximately four years, and I am presently handling a personal injury action for him concerning an accident which he had in a garage several years ago which action is presently pending in the City Court, New York County. I have also represented various other members of his family, although at the present time there are no open matters in my office concerning any members of his family.
Several days ago, I was consulted by one of Mr. A’s daughters in connection with personal injuries which she and her sister sustained in an automobile accident which happened several days ago while they were passengers in Mr. A’s automobile, which automobile lost control without making contact with any other vehicle, and hit an elevated structure. Mr. A and the other daughter are presently hospitalized, and I have not obtained any other information or details from any of the parties, nor have I taken a retainer by any of the parties. Mr. A is covered by liability insurance.
I was requested by Mr. A’s daughters to represent them in the action against Mr. A, which action while nominally against Mr. A, would of course primarily be against the insurance company. This referral to me was done with the consent of Mr. A, with whom I have not spoken, however.
I would appreciate your advice as to whether you feel, under the above circumstances, it would be proper for me to accept a retainer by Mr. A’s daughters against Mr. A in connection with this accident which apparently occurred through the negligence of Mr. A, in view of the fact that there is still pending an unrelated matter in one of the courts of the City of New York, in which I represent Mr. A.
In the opinion of the Committee, under the circumstances it would not be proper for the lawyer to accept the retainer by Mr. A’s daughters in the, action proposed to be instituted against Mr. A. (See opinions No. 382 and 603 of the Committee on Professional Ethics of the Bar Association of the City of New York at pp. 203 and 343 of the “Opinions of the Committees” on Professional Ethics of the two Bar Associations; and see also Drinker on “Legal Ethics” p. 114.)
Dated; October 22, 1958.