A few months ago, I wrote appeal for a lawyer representing an undocumented alien in a personal injury case.  They were kicked out of court on Rule 56 & Rule 41 after it came to light that (unbeknown even to his own lawyer) the plaintiff had been using an alias.  The entire case had been prosecuted under this alias to that point.  The attorney did what he could to correct the record, but after a bit of procedural gymnastics by the court, the case was dismissed.  Just found out that based on the appellate brief I wrote and the attorney’s oral argument, the appellate court revered the dismissal and remanded the case.  We’re back in business!

Moral of the story: I don’t condone this plaintiff’s use of an alias or his failure to disclose that fact to his own attorney.  However, I think our strategy of being honest and straightforward about these circumstances weighed heavily in our ultimate victory at the appellate level.  I would advise attorneys not to minimize, ignore, or attempt to justify what may be perceived as bad acts by their clients.  Instead, face them head on and deal with them in earnest through whatever legitimate legal means are available, and let the chips fall where they may.

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