98 N.J.L.J. 219
March 13, 1975
Volunteering Advice to Former Clients
We are asked to advise whether a firm may advise clients who have been represented by the firm in criminal proceedings in the past of their legal rights under recent legislation under which relief may be available to such former clients in the nature of expunging rewards of arrest.
It seems to us entirely clear that the proposed communication is consistent with the letter and the spirit of DR 2-104(A)(1) which reads:
"Suggestion of Need of Legal Services
(A) A lawyer who has given unsolicited advice to a layman that he should obtain counsel or take legal action shall not accept employment resulting from that advice, except that:
(1) A lawyer may accept employment by a close friend, relative, former client (if the advice is germane to the former employment), or one whom the lawyer believes to be a client."
This situation is to be contrasted with the circumstances described and dealt with in our Opinion 274, 96 N.J.L.J. 1437 (1973), which involved the solicitation of employment by those who might have a claim against funds which would otherwise escheat.