On July 1, 2015 the STANDING COMMITTEE ON ETHICS AND PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY released Formal Opinion 471 -“Ethical Obligations of Lawyer to Surrender Papers and Property to which Former Client is Entitled”
“Upon the termination of a representation, a lawyer is required under Model Rules 1.15 and 1.16(d) to take steps to the extent reasonably practicable to protect a client’s interest, and such steps include surrendering to the former client papers and property to which the former client is entitled. A client is not entitled to papers and property that the lawyer generated for the lawyer’s own purpose in working on the client’s matter. However, when the lawyer’s representation of the client in a matter is terminated before the matter is completed, protection of the former client’s interest may require that certain materials the lawyer generated for the lawyer’s own purpose be provided to the client”
More available here.
For more information: Francesca Giannoni-Crystal