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Communication is key in time-sensitive matters often relating to contracts, plea agreements, and settlement offers.

Lawyers are obligated to communicate any settlement offers to the client in a civil case or plea offers in a criminal case in full terms.

Rule 1.03 specifies that a lawyer shall keep a client informed about the status of a matter and promptly comply with reasonable requests for information and explain a matter so that the client can make informed decisions regarding the representation.

In order to comply with this rule, attorneys must keep open lines of communication with their clients and be readily available to discuss any new developments in the case. This includes updates on offers, progress made in negotiations, and anything else that may be consequential to the client’s rights and interests.

By adhering to this rule, attorneys can help their clients make informed decisions about their case and feel confident in the attorney-client relationship.

As advisors and counselors attorneys must give the client all the information necessary to respond properly to offers.

The same can be said when advising on contracts. For example, a waived breach of contract may occur if the non-breaching party failed to take action.

Attorneys must communicate anything consequential to the rights and interests of the client which means a good attorney keeps in touch and is easy to reach.

Prosecutors and Plea Agreements

In some ways, plea bargaining and plea agreements have always been an important part of state prosecutors’ jobs.

Coming out of the COVID-19 epidemic, around 95 percent of criminal cases have ended in plea bargains because it’s impossible for prosecutors to try every single criminal case jury. There are not enough prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges, or juries in the state to do that.

What’s more, plea bargaining allows defendants to avoid the risk of a longer sentence if they are convicted at trial. And, for victims, plea bargaining can provide a measure of justice without having to relive the trauma of a trial.

Finally, plea agreements can save the state the time and expense of a trial. All of these factors must be considered when the prosecution determines whether to offer a plea bargain.

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