Show Less

The Status of Legal Ethics


Pawel Teodor Skuczynski

The basic aim of the study is to describe the ambiguity of the term legal ethics in the context of different traditions and conceptions. The three most important traditions of legal ethics are: the French, with the categories of virtue and independence, the American, with the ideas of loyalty and professional duties, and the German, with professional roles and obedience. On that base, a theory of critical legal ethics is developed. It claims that the subject of legal ethics consists of three planes – deontological, social and moral. Further it is examined, whether chosen legal-philosophical conceptions contain any legal ethics conceptions and what could be the interdisciplinary research program of legal ethics.


Show Summary Details
Restricted access



The aim of the present work was to examine the status of legal ethics on the grounds of various philosophical disciplines and from the point of view of methodology. This was reflected in distinguishing several parts of the refelctions. Partial conclusions from each chapter contribute to the conclusions of the whole research and allow these to be reformulated as the recapitular thesis. This final thesis claims that legal ethics is a discipline of knowledge concerning deontological, social and moral aspects of practising in legal professions – a discipline with a critical task – and reflective examination of both the content and the relationships between these aspects, which are planes of the multi-dimensional theory of legal ethics. This examination is performed with methodology of an interdisciplinary character, utilising methods that are specific to legal dogmatics, social sciences, the philosophy of morality and the philosophy of law. The multi-dimensional theory of legal ethics is central to reinforcing and explaining this thesis. The theory may be interpreted as a theory of good practice in legal professions as well as a scientific program for researching standards accepted within its framework. The first chapter of the present work, examined three traditions of legal ethics – the French, the American and the German, alongside their contemporary transformations – juridisation, professionalisation and globalisation. This exmination leads to the conclusion that the concept of legal ethics is used to denote three main meanings – professional duties, professional roles and personal virtues. The co-appearance of these three meanings in many discussions on legal ethics...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.