Rule 14-527. Appointment of trustee to protect clients' interest when lawyer disappears, dies, is suspended or disbarred, or is transferred to disability status.

(a) Protective appointment of trustee. If a lawyer has disappeared or died, or if a respondent has been suspended or disbarred or transferred to disability status, and if there is evidence that the lawyer or respondent has not complied with the provisions of Rule 14-526 and no partner, executor, or other responsible party capable of conducting the lawyer's or respondent's affairs is known to exist, a district judge of the judicial district in which the lawyer or respondent maintained a principal office, upon the request of OPC counsel, may appoint a trustee to inventory the lawyer's or respondent's files, notify the lawyer's or respondent's clients, distribute the files to the clients, return unearned fees and other funds, and take any additional action authorized by the judge making the appointment.

(b) Confidentiality. No attorney-client relationship exists between the client and the trustee except to the extent necessary to maintain and preserve the confidentiality of the client. The trustee shall not disclose any information contained in the files so inventoried without the consent of the client to whom such files relate, except as necessary to carry out the order of the court making the appointment.

(c) Immunity. Any person appointed as a trustee shall have the immunity granted by Rule 14-513.