Lucian T. Pera focuses his practice on commercial litigation, legal ethics work and media law. A Memphis native, Lucian has practiced law there since 1986. He joined Adams and Reese to assist the firm’s expansion to Memphis in 2006.
His civil litigation practice has ranged widely, including a variety of commercial, personal injury and intellectual property litigation, including numerous state and federal appeals.
Lucian’s extensive bar association work in the law of legal ethics and professional responsibility has resulted in successful local, Tennessee and national practice and leadership in this emerging field. He represents and advises attorneys, law firms, their clients and businesses who deal with lawyers about all aspects of the law. Recent assignments have included defense of lawyers in disciplinary investigation, counseling clients with disciplinary and other claims against lawyers, advising law firms about loss prevention and claims, and defending and prosecuting motions to disqualify lawyers or for sanctions.
Lucian has represented many media outlets in all sorts of matters, ranging from claims and lawsuits for defamation or invasion of privacy to access to courtrooms, public records and meetings of government bodies. He has litigated several key media access cases, including a Tennessee Supreme Court case extending access under the Tennessee Public Records Act to records of private companies that are the “functional equivalent” of government (Memphis Publishing Co. v. Cherokee Children & Family Services, Inc., 87 S.W.3d 67 (Tenn. 2002)) and expressly confirming the constitutional right of public and press access to attend civil trials (King v. Jowers, 12 S.W. 3d 410 (Tenn. 1999)).
Other significant accomplishments include:
- Served as President of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers (APRL), the national membership organization of lawyers who work in the legal ethics arena.
- Active involvement in the most recent revision of the American Bar Association Model Rules of Professional Conduct, which are now the model for the lawyer ethics rules in virtually every American jurisdiction, serving as the youngest member of the ABA “Ethics 2000” Commission. Since his Ethics 2000 experience, Lucian has been deeply involved in the ABA House of Delegates’ consideration of every other significant change to the ABA Model Rules.
- Leadership of the Tennessee Bar Association ethics committee from 1995 through 2009, including spearheading the TBA’s petitions to the Tennessee Supreme Court seeking ethics rules revisions. These included the TBA’s successful petition that led to Tennessee adopting in 2002 its own version of the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct to replace Tennessee’s prior ethics rules, which had been in place since 1970.
- Active involvement in the Media Law Resource Center, the national organization of media entities and their lawyers, including as a contributor to several annual national surveys on media law.
- Served as ABA Treasurer (2011-2014), including service on the ABA Board of Governors and Executive Committee. Prior service on the ABA Board of Governors as a young lawyer from 1994-1997, including chairing its Finance Committee and serving on its Executive Committee. Membership in the ABA House of Delegates, primarily representing the TBA, for all but three years since 1991. View video of his August 2013, February 2014, and August 2014 reports to the ABA House of Delegates.
- Assisting in creation of the TBA and ABA websites and chairing the ABA Standing Committee on Technology and Information Systems.
Lucian regularly provides expert witness testimony in matters concerning legal ethics, professional responsibility and the standard of care for lawyers and law firms. He also advises businesses seeking to do business with lawyers about how they may do so legally and ethically.
Lucian also writes and speaks frequently, both nationally and in Tennessee, on legal ethics and professional responsibility and media law. In addition, he routinely conducts presentations and seminars for national audiences.