United States District Court
Northern District Of Illinois
LR83.58.3. Reporting Professional Misconduct
(a) A lawyer possessing knowledge not otherwise protected as a confidence by these
rules or by law that another lawyer has committed a violation of
LR83.58.4(a)(3) or (a)(4) shall report such knowledge to a tribunal or other authority
empowered to investigate or act upon such violation.
(b) A lawyer possessing knowledge not otherwise protected as a confidence by these
rules or by law that a judge has committed a violation of the Code of Judicial
Conduct which raises a question as to the judge’s fitness for office shall inform the appropriate authority.
(c) Upon proper request of a tribunal or other authority empowered to investigate
or act upon the conduct of lawyers or judges, a lawyer possessing information
not otherwise protected as a confidence by these rules or by law concerning
another lawyer or a judge shall reveal fully such information.
(d) A lawyer who has been disciplined as a result of a lawyer disciplinary action
brought before any body other than the Executive Committee or a judge of this
Court appointed pursuant to LR83.28(e) shall report that fact to the Executive
Committee Comment. Self-regulation of the legal profession requires that members of the
profession initiate disciplinary investigation when they know of a violation of the
rules of professional conduct. Lawyers have a similar obligation with respect to
judicial misconduct. An apparently isolated violation may indicate a pattern of
misconduct that only a disciplinary investigation can uncover. Reporting a
violation is especially important where the victim is unlikely to discover the
A report about misconduct is not required where it would involve violation of
LR83.51.6. However, a lawyer should encourage a client to consent to disclosure
where prosecution would not substantially prejudice the client’s interests.
If a lawyer were obliged to report every violation of the rules, the failure
to report any violation would itself be a professional offense. Such a
requirement existed in many jurisdictions but proved to be unenforceable. This rule
limits the reporting obligation to those offenses that a self-regulating profession
must vigorously endeavor to prevent. A measure of judgment is, therefore,
required in complying with the provisions of this rule.
The term “substantial” refers to the seriousness of the possible offense and not the quantum of
evidence of which the lawyer is aware. A report should be made to the disciplinary
agency unless some other agency, such as a peer review agency, is more
appropriate in the circumstances. Similar considerations apply to the reporting of
The duty to report professional misconduct does not apply to a lawyer retained
to represent a lawyer whose professional conduct is in question. Such a
situation is governed by the rules applicable to the client-lawyer relationship.