Case | HBS Case Collection | June 1990 (Revised October 1991)

Lake Pleasant Bodies Case (A)

by Joseph L. Badaracco Jr.

Abstract

Presents a classic dilemma in legal ethics--the conflict between an attorney's obligations as an attorney, in this case to protect a client's confidentiality, and his or her own moral obligations as a person. An attorney must decide how to respond to the father of a missing young woman who has asked for information about her whereabouts. The attorney knows from conversations with his client that the young woman is dead and where her body is. Shows students what role-related obligations are, why they have strong moral claims, and the difficult dilemmas role obligations can create.

Keywords: Decision Choices and Conditions; Moral Sensibility; Questionnaires; Attorney and Client Relationships; Social Psychology; Conflict Management; Legal Services Industry;

Citation:

Badaracco, Joseph L., Jr. "Lake Pleasant Bodies Case (A)." Harvard Business School Case 390-212, June 1990. (Revised October 1991.)