Since 2007, the ELC and ODC procedures
changed. Any discrepancy between the
information in this article and Washington Supreme Court rules and regulations,
WSBA Bylaws and policies, or ODC policies and procedures is unintentional and
will be resolved in favor of the rules, regulations, bylaws, policies, and procedures.
2. In non-communication situations, staff
members encourage lawyers to comply
with RPC 1. 4, which requires a lawyer to
keep a client reasonably informed about
the status of a matter. In file disputes,
staff members refer to WSBA Advisory Opinion 181 (Asserting Possessory
Lien Rights and Responding to Former
Client’s Request for Files) and WSBA
Advisory Opinion 2211 (Obligation to
Provide (redacted) Discovery Materials
to Former Client). In fee disputes, staff
members suggest alternative dispute
resolution through outside mediation or
arbitration. The WSBA does not offer mediation or fee arbitration programs.
3. ELC 1. 4 provides that no “statute of limitation or other time limitation restricts filing a grievance or bringing a proceeding
under these rules, but the passage of time
since an act of misconduct occurred may
be considered in determining what if any
action or sanction is warranted.”
4. ELC 5. 2 provides that ODC may conduct an
investigation if “a person files a grievance
or provides information to disciplinary
counsel about a lawyer’s possible misconduct or disability, and asks to be treated as
a confidential source.” Additional information for lawyers filing grievances is available in the September 2013 NWSidebar
post entitled “Professional Misconduct: To
Report or Not to Report,” and Comment [ 1]
to RPC 8. 3.
5. Under ELC 3. 4(h), information subject to a
protective order under ELC 3. 2(e) will not
6. Under ELC 5. 3(h), if disciplinary counsel
schedules a deposition, the lawyer is liable
for the costs of the deposition and attorney
fees of $500.
7. See ELC 5. 3(d).
8. Generally, ODC destroys a grievance file
and an electronic record of the grievance
file three years after the initial dismissal
9. Under ELC 8. 2(b), disability proceedings
are not disciplinary proceedings and they
are confidential under ELC 3. 3(b).
10. See ELC 9. 1.
11. See ELC 9. 3.