Margaret C. Tarkington

Associate Professor of Law and Dean's Fellow

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law
Lawrence W. Inlow Hall, Room 316
530 W. New York Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202-3225

Phone: (317) 278-8440



J.D., 2002, J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University
B.A., 1999, Brigham Young University


Professional Responsibility, Civil Procedure, and Federal Courts


Margaret Tarkington joined the faculty in the fall of 2011. Prior to joining the IU McKinney faculty, she taught for four years at the J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah, where she received the SBA Award for Professor of the Year for First Year Courses. In 2010-2011, she was a Visiting Associate Professor of Law at the University of Cincinnati College of Law, where she taught Legal Ethics, Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, and Torts.

Professor Tarkington’s scholarly interests lie in professional responsibility and civil procedure. Her work in professional responsibility addresses the intersection of restrictions on attorney speech, the First Amendment, and the overall administration of justice. Her research has been published in the Georgetown Law Journal, the Boston College Law Review, the UC Davis Law Review, and the Utah Law Review, among others. Tarkington’s recent work develops a new methodology for analyzing the free speech rights of lawyers that works to preserve the essential role of attorneys in the U.S. justice system. Tarkington’s research has also explored how the judicial punishment of attorney speech for impugning judicial integrity undermines the core purposes of the First Amendment and impedes protection of constitutional and legal rights to an unbiased and competent judiciary.

Tarkington has consulted on disciplinary proceedings brought against attorneys for their speech, and her work is cited in major treatises, including the Annotated Model Rules of Professional Conduct, Constitutional Law: Substance and Procedure, Federal Practice and Procedure, and Criminal Defense Ethics: Law and Liability. From January 2011 to January 2014, Tarkington served as a member of the Executive Committee of the AALS Professional Responsibility Section, and she continues to serve as the Editor of the section’s newsletter.

A member of the Order of the Coif and a summa cum laude graduate of BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School, Professor Tarkington was also the Executive Editor of the law review. After graduating, she clerked for Judge Kenneth F. Ripple, United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, in South Bend, Indiana. She worked as an associate at Sommer Barnard in Indianapolis and at Wood Crapo in Salt Lake City.



Law Review and Journal Articles

  • *Freedom of Attorney-Client Association, 2012 UTAH LAW REVIEW 1071.
  • *A First Amendment Theory for Protecting Attorney Speech, 45 UC DAVIS LAW REVIEW 27 (2011).
  • *Attorney Speech and the Right to an Impartial Adjudicator, 30 REVIEW OF LITIGATION 849 (2011).
  • *Government Speech and the Publicly Employed Attorney, 2010 BYU LAW REVIEW, no. 6, 2175.
  • *A Free Speech Right to Impugn Judicial Integrity in Court Proceedings, 51 BOSTON COLLEGE LAW REVIEW 363 (2010).
  • *The Truth Be Damned: The First Amendment, Attorney Speech, and Judicial Reputation, 97 GEORGETOWN LAW JOURNAL 1567 (2009).
  • *Rejecting the Touchstone: Complete Preemption and Congressional Intent after Beneficial National Bank v. Anderson, 59 SOUTH CAROLINA LAW REVIEW 225 (2008).

Other Publications

  • Must a Court Establish Personal Jurisdiction Prior to Dismissing a Case on the Ground of Forum Non Conveniens?, 34 PREVIEW OF THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT CASES, no. 4, 194 (2007).
  • Should the Rule in Blakely Be Applied Retroactively in Habeas Corpus Proceedings?, 34 PREVIEW OF THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT CASES, no. 2, 92 (2006).