Rated “R” for Language

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I will kick your a*s in court or anywhere else, you pansy.”
“Go f**k yourself, you rotten b***h.”
“Oh s**t . . . Oh shoot I said.  Oh shoot . . .I know the word you think I said. My mother never let me say that . . .  I said shoot, darn it.”
“I’m Tony Montana! You f**k with me, you f****n’ with the best!”

Each of the above quotes was recently said by a lawyer to an adversary or in court (ok, not the last one).  And each of the lawyers was sanctioned or disciplined. 

And it’s not just cussin’.  A lawyer was recently sanctioned $10,000, for insulting opposing counsel and court personnel and repeatedly interrupting his adversary’s questioning of a witness with improper objections.    

If common sense does not itself dictate that you should avoid personal insults and profanity in communications, many of the jurisdictions and courts in which we practice have promulgated standards of civility or professionalism for lawyers (even Texas!).    

Using profanity and otherwise engaging in uncivil conduct is not likely to get you results — unless the results you’re looking for are sanctions, discipline or embarrassment.  So when dealing with others, keep it clean.  Even if your adversary is an a*****e.

Samples of some civility/professionalism guidelines are attached.  The Scarface clip isn’t.    

http://ethics.calbar.ca.gov/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=mPBEL3nGaFs%3D&tabid=455

http://www.ilnd.uscourts.gov/home/LocalRules.aspx?rtab=ruleofconduct 

http://www.law.uh.edu/libraries/ethics/lcreed/index.html