Nebraska Lawyer Ethics Rules

Nebraska Lawyers Assistance Program
Nebraska State Bar Association

Nebraska Lawyers Assistance Program
The Nebraska Lawyers Assistance Program (NLAP) offers help to all licensed lawyers, judges and law students troubled by substance abuse problems, cognitive decline, stress, depression and other types of disorders which may impair their ability to perform in a competent and professional manner. The NLAP director and volunteers know the problems faced by their impaired colleagues and can help.

Because of the sensitive nature of these problems, lawyers who need help are often very reluctant to seek it. Recognizing this, the Supreme Court of Nebraska addressed confidentiality as part of its Rules. Nebraska Rule of Professional Conduct §3-501.6(c) provides that the relationship between a member of the Committee and/or the NLAP Director and a lawyer or judge who seeks or receives assistance shall be the same as that of attorney and client.

The foundation of NLAP is a network of judges and lawyers throughout Nebraska who are themselves recovering from alcohol and other drug addiction, psychological problems, and impairment caused by other conditions. The NLAP director and these volunteers stand ready to assist their colleagues in all areas of their recovery.


NLAP Can Help

Among the services which NLAP can offer to an impaired lawyer, judge or law student are:

  • Assessment and Referral: The NLAP director and/or members of the Committee will meet with the affected person, either at the NLAP office or elsewhere, to assess the problem and recommend available professional evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation options.
  • Interventions: In appropriate situations, NLAP will plan, rehearse, and facilitate a formal intervention to assist the affected person in recognizing his or her problem and begin the recovery process.
  • Peer Support Network: The affected person will be paired with a lawyer in his/her geographical area to provide support. For lawyers working on recovery, this person acts as a mentor guiding him/her into the recovery process and assisting him/her to maintain recovery.
  • Education and Prevention: NLAP works with law firms, the courts, NSBA committees and sections, and local bar associations to provide education concerning lawyer impairment and recovery.
  • Anyone with concerns about a lawyer, judge or law student may call NLAP. In fact, roughly half of NLAP’s calls come from concerned colleagues, clients, family or friends.


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