From the 2010 News Archive
Paper by Matt Williamson '11 Earns 2nd in IADC Competition
A paper by J. Matthew Williamson, a member of the University of Maryland Law School’s Class of 2011, has earned second place in the national Legal Writing contest sponsored by the International Association of Defense Counsel
In an abstract to his paper, "Should Attorneys General Apply Ethics Rules to Civil Cases? Answering Challenges to the Politicization of Mass Products Tort Litigation," Williamson asserts:
Scholars have recently debated whether courts should apply prosecutorial ethics rules to government attorneys in civil cases. Other scholars have questioned whether parens patriae standing supports attorneys general in initiating mass tort litigation. This article explores whether state ethics rules or the ABA rules forbid attorneys general from filing mass products suits and whether those rules apply to the conduct of attorneys general during litigation. The article uses the recent debates as a foundation to conclude that although the rules do not expressly forbid such litigation, they provide strong exhortatory reasons to refrain from using litigation to incite political action.
Wiliamson's advisor was Professor Donald Gifford, author of the recently published book "Suing the Tobacco and Lead Paint Industries."