Technology Matters

May 7, 2019 | PublicationPublished Article

Texas lawyers are subject to new requirements to satisfy duty of competence

State Bar of Texas

Michael Best attorney Elizabeth Rogers was published in the recent State Bar of Texas article "Technology Matters."

A Texas lawyer’s competence has traditionally been measured by his or her experience and knowledge of a substantive area of the law. But on February 26, 2019, Texas became the 36th state1 to formally adopt an expanded definition of a lawyer’s competence to include an “ethical duty of technology competence” when the Texas Supreme Court entered its order, amending Comment 8 to Rule 1.01 of the Texas Professional Rules of Disciplinary Conduct.2

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.3

A common question is “what does technology competence mean for lawyers?” Language in the resolution submitted by the State Bar of Texas Computer & Technology Section suggests an answer:

…“[T]he practice of law is now inextricably intertwined with technology for the delivery of services, the docketing of legal processes, communications, and the storage and transfer of client information, including sensitive and confidential private information and other protected data.”

To read the full article, click here.

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