The Committee on Ethics is our “conscience” on ethical practice for our Section. Increasing numbers of attorneys are foraying into dispute resolution as neutrals, as advocates representing clients in dispute resolution processes or as collaborators with other professionals in dispute resolution processes. Many of us are questioning what constitutes good ethical practice as we grapple with such challenging issues as confidentiality, conflicts of interest, party self-determination, ethics of collaboration, multijurisdictional practice, the unauthorized practice of law and moral awareness. After all, we are not only bound by our ethical obligations as attorneys, but we may also be bound by the relevant ethical codes on dispute resolution. What are the relevant ethical codes? Which is the ethical path we should follow? What direction should we go when just “follow the yellow brick road” is not an option? Are good intentions enough to steer us away from the road many of us would prefer to avoid? How should we respond to those emerging ethical conundrums that were not even contemplated by the existing ethical codes when these codes were first created? Help!

Yes, ethics in ADR is more than an opportunity to satisfy your CLE ethics requirement. Ethics defines us, guides how we conduct ourselves as practitioners and furthers theintegrity of our dispute resolution field. The Committee on Ethics invites the Committees within our Section, NYSBA’s Committee on Professional Ethics, the other Committees and Sections in NYSBA, interested ADR colleagues and you to work with us. Help identify existing and potential ethical dilemmas confronting dispute resolution practitioners so that together we may construct a more easily navigable road to ethical success for neutrals, attorneys and collaborative professionals who practice dispute resolution.

The ADR Ethics Committee, chaired by the A. Rene Hollyer and Lewis F. Tesser, offers programs that help dispute resolution professionals, neutrals and advocates calibrate their ethical compass when confronting the ongoing challenges of dispute resolution practice. The committee welcomes the participation of all interested section members. The committee is always available to meet with other committees to address ethical issues of concern.

This past year’s programs included programming at the Section’s fall meeting and at the NYSBA annual meeting in January. The committee is organizes special committee meetings. This year it addressed the ever present issue of “Clarifying the Limits of Arbitrator’s Disclosure of Conflicts” which will consider the latest case law on the subject and, will address the emerging interest in “Globalizing ADR Ethics?”

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