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North Carolina Professional Responsibility Research

A guide to researching legal ethics in North Carolina

An Overview of the Subject

Topical Overviews

What follows is a list of sources for assisting the user in becoming oriented in the topic.  Links to the UNC Law Library catalog are provided, as well as links to online versions, where available.

   Attorney Ethics

  • Mastering Professional ResponsibilityGrace M. Giesel, (Carolina Academic Press, 2015)

    • This volume includes a brief historical perspective, "checkpoints" to reinforce key rules, application of rules to fact scenarios with limited case citation, references to Restatement (Third) of the Law Governing Lawyers, table of cases.  Created with law students in mind, this volume also includes discussion of related constitutional principles, such as ineffective assistance of counsel, and other evidentiary and procedural rules that may apply.

    • Available in the UNC Law Library at KF306 .G547 2015.

  • Legal Ethics in a Nutshell, 5th ed., by Ronald Rotunda (Thomson/West, 2018)​

    • ​Available in the UNC Law Library at KF306.Z9 R668 2018.

    • Full-text also available online through UNC Libraries, with permission.

  • Understanding Lawyers' Ethics, 5th, Monroe H. Freedman & Abbe Smith (Carolina Academic Press, 2016)

    • This text positions lawyers' professional responsibility as based in the Bill of Rights and provides comparative views of legal ethics and a detailed history of the ABA's ethical codes.

    • Available in the UNC Law Library at KF306 .F748 2016.

  • Legal Ethics, Professional Responsibility, and the Legal ProfessionGregory C. Sisk, Susan Saab Fortney, Charles Gardner Geyh, Neil W. Hamilton, William D. Henderson, Vincent R. Johnson, Katherine R. Kruse, Stephen L. Pepper, Melissa H. Weresh (West Academic, 2018)

    • ​Available in the UNC Law Library at KF306 .S57 2018.

    • Full-text also available online, through UNC libraries, with permission.


   Judicial Ethics

Restatements and Treatises

Restatements and Treatises on Ethics and Professional Responsibility

These restatements and treatises provide focused insight into the subject of ethics and professional responsibility, utilizing the ABA Model Code as a guide.  Note that where an online version exists, the most current materials will likely be found there.

  • Restatement (Third) of the Law Governing Lawyers. American Law Institute (2000), with cases updated regularly.

    • ​Produced by the American Law Institute, the substance of this two-volume set encompasses practice related to the ABA Model Rules, as well as the broader considerations of professional responsibility in the practice of law.

    • Available at the UNC Law Library at KF395.A2 L38 2000, as well as online through UNC Libraries and HeinOnline, or Westlaw, with account access.

    • Includes searchable table of contents and index and annual updates, as well as an archive of draft-related material for historical research.