The Doral saga continues. After apparently Hacienda came to its senses and decided to try to settle the case and just a day away from the Court imposed deadline, the Government brought in ideas from Foley & Lardner, a stateside law firm, who just happened to have a contract with Doral. Conflict of interest, at least to me, was clear and Doral left the negotiating table.
The Court of First Instance ruled that only the lawyers in the litigation would be in the negotiating table but Hacienda said the Foley & Lardner would be in the next room.
It is interesting that Hacienda said that according to the Rules of Ethics of the State of Florida, there was no conflict of interest but there was no mention of the Rules of Ethics of Puerto Rico. Moreover, Foley’s attorneys, in order to provide advice to Hacienda, need to be admitted to the P.R. Bar, through passing the bar or in a pro hac vice type procedure pursuant to Rule 12(f) of the Puerto Rico Supreme Court’s regulations, see, In Re Wolper, 189 D.P.R. 292 (2013). Additionally, all lawyers in Puerto Rico are admonished to make sure lawyers who are not admitted to this jurisdiction do not practice or advice clients here. And Melba Acosta, Puerto Rico’s Treasury Secretary is a licensed attorney. I definitely hope she has not forgotten the ethical duties.