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Texas Adopts Technology Competence

Texas is the latest state to officially adopt the requirement of technology competence modeled after the ABA Rules of Professional Conduct. The ABA adopted technology competence in 2012. Since then 36 states have followed suit and adopted similar language that requires attorneys to be competent in technology as part of the rules of professional conduct. Texas, my home state, officially changed comment 8 to rule 1.01 to read as follows:

Rule 1.01. Competent and Diligent Representation

Maintaining Competence

8. Because of the vital role of lawyers in the legal process, each lawyer should strive to become and remain proficient and competent in the practice of law, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology. To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill of a competent practitioner, a lawyer should engage in continuing study and education. If a system of peer review has been established, the lawyer should consider making use of it in appropriate circumstances. Isolated instances of faulty conduct or decision should be identified for purposes of additional study or instruction.

The underlined portion is the change that the Texas Supreme Court ordered on February 26, 2019. Robert Ambrogi of Lawsitesblog.com has a map of the states with similar ethics rules here. Now when your buddy tells you that she can’t or won’t learn about the technology solutions that you’re trying to share with her you can be a super jerk and share this post with her!

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Zach Herbert

is a Tech Geek and Trial Lawyer at Herbert Law Consulting. Follow him on Twitter

Zachary Herbert