ELN members use the Network for client matters in three principal ways:
- An attorney in a member firm contacts a second attorney in a member firm in another jurisdiction for informal consultation on a local environmental issue. No confidential information is exchanged, and the consulted attorney is not told the name of the client and does not bill for time.
- One member firm engages another for a discrete portion of a specific environmental matter. The consulted firm provides guidance on the laws of the jurisdiction in which it practices, or contacts within local environmental agencies.
The consulted firm is asked to handle the entire matter in a typical referral fashion. The latter two examples require separate engagement letters with the client and complete reviews for potential conflicts of interests.
Regardless of how the client is assisted in these ways, each firm in the network maintains its independent status and sole responsibility for professional services and fees, consistent with all applicable ethical standards.
Shared knowledge and experience are valuable resources:
During these communications Network members share:
ELN members maintain on going personal and professional network connections through periodic conference calls, on-line communications and annual meetings in order to add value to the services each member firm provides to its clients.
- Knowledge of cutting-edge legal developments
- Analysis of environmental policy trends
- Experiences with state and federal regulatory agencies
- Information about environmental consulting firms
- Innovative approaches to solving environmental problems