Title 4 Transactions With Persons Other Than Clients
RPC 4.1: TRUTHFULNESS IN STATEMENTS TO OTHERS
In the course of representing a client a lawyer shall not knowingly:
(a) make a false statement of material fact or law to a third person; or
(b) fail to disclose a material fact to a third person when disclosure is necessary to avoid assisting a criminal or fraudulent act by a client, unless disclosure is prohibited by Rule 1.6.
[Adopted effective September 1, 1985.]
 A lawyer is required to be truthful when dealing with others on a client's behalf, but generally has no affirmative duty to inform an opposing party of relevant facts. A misrepresentation can occur if the lawyer incorporates or affirms a statement of another person that the lawyer knows is false. Misrepresentations can also occur by partially true but misleading statements or omissions that are the equivalent of affirmative false statements. For dishonest conduct that does not amount to a false statement or for misrepresentations by a lawyer other than in the course of representing a client, see Rule 8.4.
Statements of Fact
 This Rule refers to statements of fact. Whether a particular statement should be regarded as one of fact can depend on the circumstances. Under generally accepted conventions in negotiation, certain types of statements ordinarily are not taken as statements of material fact. Estimates of price or value placed on the subject of a transaction and a party's intentions as to an acceptable settlement of a claim are ordinarily in this category, and so is the existence of an undisclosed principal except where nondisclosure of the principal would constitute fraud. Lawyers should be mindful of their obligations under applicable law to avoid criminal and tortious misrepresentation.
Crime or Fraud by Client
 Under Rule 1.2(d), a lawyer is prohibited from counseling or assisting a client in conduct that the lawyer knows is criminal or fraudulent. Paragraph (b) states a specific application of the principle set forth in Rule 1.2(d) and addresses the situation where a client's crime or fraud takes the form of a lie or misrepresentation. Ordinarily, a lawyer can avoid assisting a client's crime or fraud by withdrawing from the representation. Sometimes it may be necessary for the lawyer to give notice of the fact of withdrawal and to disaffirm an opinion, document, affirmation or the like. In extreme cases, substantive law may require a lawyer to disclose information relating to the representation to avoid being deemed to have assisted the client's crime or fraud. If the lawyer can avoid assisting a client's crime or fraud only by disclosing this information, then under paragraph (b) the lawyer is required to do so, unless the disclosure is prohibited by Rule 1.6. [Comments adopted September 1, 2006.]
RPC 4.2: COMMUNICATION WITH PERSON REPRESENTED BY A LAWYER
In representing a client, a lawyer shall not communicate about the subject of the representation with a person the lawyer knows to be represented by another lawyer in the matter, unless the lawyer has the consent of the other lawyer or is authorized to do so by law or a court order.
[Originally effective September 1, 1985; amended effective October 29, 2002; September 1, 2006; April 14, 2015.]
 This Rule contributes to the proper functioning of the legal system by protecting a person who has chosen to be represented by a lawyer in a matter against possible overreaching by other lawyers who are participating in the matter, interference by those lawyers with the client-lawyer relationship and the uncounselled disclosure of information relating to the representation.
 [Washington revision] This Rule applies to communications with any person who is represented by a lawyer concerning the matter to which the communication relates. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] The Rule applies even though the person represented by a lawyer initiates or consents to the communication. A lawyer must immediately terminate communication with a person if, after commencing communication, the lawyer learns that the person is one with whom communication is not permitted by this Rule. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] This Rule does not prohibit communication with a person represented by a lawyer or an employee or agent of such a person, concerning matters outside the representation. For example, the existence of a controversy between a government agency and a private party, or between two organizations, does not prohibit a lawyer either from communicating with nonlawyer representatives of the other regarding a separate matter. Nor does this Rule preclude communication with a person represented by a lawyer who is seeking advice from a lawyer who is not otherwise representing a client in the matter. A lawyer may not make a communication prohibited by this Rule through the acts of another. See Rule 8.4(a). Parties to a matter may communicate directly with each other, and a lawyer is not prohibited from advising a client concerning a communication that the client is legally entitled to make. Also, a lawyer having independent justification or legal authorization for communicating with a represented person is permitted to do so. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 Communications authorized by law may include communications by a lawyer on behalf of a client who is exercising a constitutional or other legal right to communicate with the government. Communications authorized by law may also include investigative activities of lawyers representing governmental entities, directly or through investigative agents, prior to the commencement of criminal or civil enforcement proceedings. When communicating with the accused in a criminal matter, a government lawyer must comply with this Rule in addition to honoring the constitutional rights of the accused. The fact that a communication does not violate a state or federal constitutional right is insufficient to establish that the communication is permissible under this Rule.
 [Washington revision] A lawyer who is uncertain whether a communication with a person represented by a lawyer is permissible may seek a court order. A lawyer may also seek a court order in exceptional circumstances to authorize a communication that would otherwise be prohibited by this Rule, for example, where communication with a person represented by a lawyer is necessary to avoid reasonably certain injury. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] In the case of a represented organization, this Rule prohibits communications with a constituent of the organization who supervises, directs or regularly consults with the organization's lawyer concerning the matter or has authority to obligate the organization with respect to the matter. Consent of the organization's lawyer is not required for communication with a former constituent. If a constituent of the organization is represented in the matter by his or her own lawyer, the consent by that lawyer to a communication will be sufficient for purposes of this Rule. In communicating with a current or former constituent of an organization, a lawyer must not use methods of obtaining evidence that violate the legal rights of the organization. See Rule 4.4. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] The prohibition on communication with a person represented by a lawyer only applies in circumstances where the lawyer knows that the person is in fact represented in the matter to be discussed. This means that the lawyer has actual knowledge of the fact of the representation; but such actual knowledge may be inferred from the circumstances. See Rule 1.0A(f). Thus, the lawyer cannot evade the r.0equirement of obtaining the consent of another lawyer by closing eyes to the obvious. [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] In the event the person with whom the lawyer communicates is not known to be represented by a lawyer in the matter, the lawyer's communications are subject to Rule 4.3. [Comment amended April 14, 2015.] Additional Washington Comments (10 - 12)
 Comment  to Model Rule 4.2 was revised to conform to Washington law. The phrase "or whose act or omission in connection with the matter may be imputed to the organization for purposes of civil or criminal liability" and the reference to Model Rule 3.4(f) was deleted. Whether and how lawyers may communicate with employees of an adverse party is governed by Wright v. Group Health Hospital, 103 Wn.2d 192, 691 P.2d 564 (1984). See also Washington Comment  to Rule 3.4. [Comment  adopted effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] A person not otherwise represented by a lawyer to whom limited representation is being provided or has been provided in accordance with Rule 1.2(c) is considered to be unrepresented for purposes of this Rule unless the opposing lawyer knows of, or has been provided with, a written notice of appearance under which, or a written notice of time period during which, he or she is to communicate only with the limited representation lawyer as to the subject matter within the limited scope of the representation. (The provisions of this Comment were taken from former Washington RPC 4.2(b)). [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 A person who is assisted by an LLLT is not represented by a lawyer for purposes of this Rule. See APR 28B(4). Therefore, a lawyer may communicate directly with a person who is assisted by an LLLT. Lawyer communication with a person who is assisted by an LLLT instead is governed by RPC 4.3 and RPC 4.4. For special considerations that may arise when a lawyer deals with a person who is assisted by an LLLT, see Rule 4.4 Comment .
[Comments adopted effective September 1, 2006.]
RPC 4.3 DEALING WITH PERSON NOT REPRESENTED BY A LAWYER
In dealing on behalf of a client with a person who is not represented by a lawyer shall not state or imply that the lawyer is disinterested. When the lawyer knows or reasonably should know that the unrepresented person misunderstands the lawyer's role in the matter, the lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to correct the misunderstanding. The lawyer shall not give legal advice to an unrepresented person, other than the advice to secure the services of another legal practitioner, if the lawyer knows or reasonably should know that the interests of such a person are or have a reasonable possibility of being in conflict with the interests of the client.
[Adopted effective September 1, 1985; amended effective October 29, 2002; September 1, 2006; April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] An unrepresented person, particularly one not experienced in dealing with legal matters, might assume that a lawyer is disinterested in loyalties or is a disinterested authority on the law even when the lawyer represents a client. In order to avoid a misunderstanding, a lawyer will typically need to identify the lawyer's client and, where necessary, explain that the client has interests opposed to those of the unrepresented person. For misunderstandings that sometimes arise when a lawyer for an organization deals with an unrepresented constituent, see Rule 1.13(f). For the definition of unrepresented person under this Rule, see Washington Comment . [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
 [Washington revision] The Rule distinguishes between situations involving unrepresented persons whose interests may be adverse to those of the lawyer's client and those in which the person's interests are not in conflict with the client's. In the former situation, the possibility that the lawyer will compromise the unrepresented person's interests is so great that the Rule prohibits the giving of any advice, apart from the advice to obtain the services of another legal practitioner. Whether a lawyer is giving impermissible advice may depend on the experience and sophistication of the unrepresented person, as well as the setting in which the behavior and comments occur. This Rule does not prohibit a lawyer from negotiating the terms of a transaction or settling a dispute with an unrepresented person. So long as the lawyer has explained that the lawyer represents an adverse party and is not representing the person, the lawyer may inform the person of the terms on which the lawyer's client will enter into an agreement or settle a matter, prepare documents that require the person's signature and explain the lawyer's own view of the meaning of the document or the lawyer's view of the underlying legal obligations. For special considerations that may arise when a lawyer deals with a person who is assisted by an LLLT, see RPC 4.4 Comment . [Comment amended effective April 14, 2015.]
Additional Washington Comments (3 - 6)
 An otherwise unrepresented person to whom limited representation is being provided or has been provided in accordance with Rule 1.2(c) is considered to be unrepresented for purposes of this Rule unless the opposing lawyer knows of, or has been provided with, a written notice of appearance under which, or a written notice of time period during which, he or she is to communicate only with the limited representation lawyer as to the subject matter within the limited scope of the representation. (The provisions of this Comment were taken from former Washington RPC 4.3(b)).
 Government lawyers are frequently called upon by unrepresented persons, and in some instances by the courts, to provide general information on laws and procedures relating to claims against the government. The provision of such general information by government lawyers is not a violation of this Rule. [Comments adopted effective September 1, 2006.]
 For purposes of this Rule, a person who is assisted by an LLLT is not represented by a lawyer and is an unrepresented person. See APR 28B(4). [Comment adopted effective April 14, 2015.]
 When a lawyer communicates with an LLLT who represents an opposing party about the subject of the representation, the lawyer should be guided by an understanding of the limitations imposed on the LLLT by APR 28H(6) (an LLLT shall not "negotiate the client's legal rights or responsibilities, or communicate with another person the client's position or convey to the client the position of another party") and the LLLT RPC. The lawyer should further take care not to overreach or intrude into privileged information. APR 28K(3) ("The Washington law of attorney-client privilege and law of a lawyer's fiduciary responsibility to the client shall apply to the Limited License Legal Technician-client relationship to the same extent as it would apply to an attorney-client relationship"). [Comment  adopted effective April 14, 2015.]
RPC 4.4: RESPECT FOR RIGHTS OF THIRD PERSON
(a) In representing a client, a lawyer shall not use means that have no substantial purpose other than to embarrass, delay, or burden a third person, or use methods of obtaining evidence that violate the legal rights of such a person.
(b) A lawyer who receives a document relating to the representation of the lawyer's client and knows or reasonably should know that the document was inadvertently sent shall promptly notify the sender.
[Originally effective September 1, 1985; amended effective September 1, 2006.]
 Responsibility to a client requires a lawyer to subordinate the interests of others to those of the client, but that responsibility does not imply that a lawyer may disregard the rights of third persons. It is impractical to catalogue all such rights, but they include legal restrictions on methods of obtaining evidence from third persons and unwarranted intrusions into privileged relationships, such as the client-lawyer relationship.
 Paragraph (b) recognizes that lawyers sometimes receive documents that were mistakenly sent or produced by opposing parties or their lawyers. If a lawyer knows or reasonably should know that such a document was sent inadvertently, then this Rule requires the lawyer to promptly notify the sender in order to permit that person to take protective measures. Whether the lawyer is required to take additional steps, such as returning the original document, is a matter of law beyond the scope of these Rules, as is the question of whether the privileged status of a document has been waived. Similarly, this Rule does not address the legal duties of a lawyer who receives a document that the lawyer knows or reasonably should know may have been wrongfully obtained by the sending person. For purposes of this Rule, "document" includes e-mail or other electronic modes of transmission subject to being read or put into readable form.
 Some lawyers may choose to return a document unread, for example, when the lawyer learns before receiving the document that it was inadvertently sent to the wrong address. Where a lawyer is not required by applicable law to do so, the decision to voluntarily return such a document is a matter of professional judgment ordinarily reserved to the lawyer. See Rules 1.2 and 1.4. [Comments adopted effective September 1, 2006.]
Additional Washington Comments [4-5]
 The duty imposed by paragraph (a) of this Rule includes a lawyer's assertion or inquiry about a third person's immigration status when the lawyer's purpose is to intimidate, coerce, or obstruct that person from participating in a civil matter. Issues involving immigration status carry a significant danger of interfering with the proper functioning of the justice system. See Salas v. Hi-Tech Erectors, 168 Wn.2d 664, 230 P.3d 583 (2010). When a lawyer is representing a client in a civil matter, a lawyer's communication to a party or a witness that the lawyer will report that person to immigration authorities, or a lawyer's report of that person to immigration authorities, furthers no substantial purpose of the civil adjudicative system if the lawyer's purpose is to intimidate, coerce, or obstruct that person. A communication in violation of this Rule can also occur by an implied assertion that is the equivalent of an express assertion prohibited by paragraph (a). See also Rules 8.4(b) (prohibiting criminal acts that reflect adversely on a lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer in other respects), 8.4(d) (prohibiting conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice), and 8.4(h) (prohibiting conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice toward judges, lawyers, LLLTs, other parties, witnesses, jurors, or court personnel or officers, that a reasonable person would interpret as manifesting prejudice or bias on the basis of sex, race, age, creed, religion, color, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or marital status). [Comment  adopted effective August 20, 2013.]
 A risk of unwarranted intrusion into a privileged relationship may arise when a lawyer deals with a person who is assisted by an LLLT. Although a lawyer may communicate directly with a person who is assisted by an LLLT, see Rule 4.2 Comment , client-LLLT communications are privileged to the same extent as client-lawyer communications. See APR 28K(3). An LLLT's ethical duty of confidentiality further protects the LLLT client's right to confidentiality in that professional relationship, see LLLT RPC 1.6(a). When dealing with a person who is assisted by an LLLT, a lawyer must respect these legal rights that protect the client-LLLT relationship. [Comment  adopted effective April 14, 2015.]