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CLE: “Conflicts of Interest: A Practical Roadmap”; Presenter: Thomas E. Spahn, McGuireWoods LLP - 2 CLE Credits (2 Ethics)

  • Tuesday, October 19, 2021
  • 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • City of Norfolk Courthouse First Floor Training Room / Zoom Webinar


  • Non-NPBA members may register here for attendance via Zoom.

    In-person attendance is only available to NPBA Members due to limited space.
  • NPBA Members, please register here to attend on Zoom.

Registration is required. Registration will close at 10am on the day of the CLE.


Thomas E. Spahn, McGuireWoods LLP

Learn more about our presenter: 

Thomas E. Spahn, practices as a commercial litigator with McGuireWoods in Tysons Corner, Virginia. Tom was selected as the 2013 and the 2020 metro-Washington DC "Lawyer of the Year" for "Bet the Company Litigation" by The Best Lawyers in America (Woodward/White, Inc.). In 2018, Virginia Lawyers Weekly selected him for inclusion in the inaugural Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame. Tom has served on the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility, and is a Member of the American Law Institute and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He has spoken at over 1,900 CLE programs throughout the U.S. and in several foreign countries. Through links on his website bio, Tom has made available to the public: his summaries of over 1,600 Virginia and ABA legal ethics opinions, organized by topic; a 300 page summary of his two-volume 1,500 page book on the attorney-client privilege and work product doctrine; over 950 weekly email alerts about privilege and work product cases; materials for over 40 ethics programs on numerous topics, totaling about 10,000 pages of analysis. Tom graduated magna cum laude from Yale University and received his J.D. from Yale Law School.

Presentation Highlights:

Conflicts of Interest:  A Practical Roadmap

This interactive program uses hypotheticals to explore basic conflicts of interest rules, including:  the general prohibition on adversity to current clients; the definition of "client" for conflicts purposes (including corporations, associations, estates and others); the definition of "adversity" for conflicts purposes (including business adversity, adverse financial impact, discovery of clients and positional adversity); the complex rules governing joint representations; the more subtle standard governing adversity to former clients; determining the status of an attorney‑client relationship; application of the "substantial relationship" standard; “material limitation” conflicts; lawyers’ ability to withdraw from a representation to cure a conflict (including the "hot potato" rule); consents that can cure conflicts (including the revocability of consents and prospective consents); disqualification motions based on conflicts of interest (including standards, process and effects).

Additional Details:

  • Please be prepared to follow any current health and safety mandates in effect in the courthouse at the time of the event.

  • Due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, events may be canceled, postponed, or transitioned to virtual programs.

  • All registrants (both in-person and Zoom) will receive a Zoom link and materials in advance of the CLE by email so that attendees can easily change from in-person to remote attendance if needed.

  • If you register for in-person attendance, but are later unable to attend in person, please contact NPBA staff so that an in-person attendance seat can be opened up.

  • Please contact bar association staff at 757 622-3152 or contact@norfolkandportsmouthbar.org if you have any questions.
*This program has been approved by the Virginia Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Board for 2 hours of credit, of which 2 hours will also apply in the area of legal ethics.