When a client's ability to make adequately considered decisions in connection with the representation is diminished, whether because of minority, mental disability or for some other reason, the lawyer shall, as far as reasonably possible, maintain a normal client-lawyer relationship with the client. Ark. Disciplinary R. of Prof. Conduct, R. 1.14(a). When the lawyer reasonably believes that the client has diminished capacity, is at risk of substantial physical, financial, or other harm unless action is taken and cannot adequately act in the client's own interest, the lawyer may take reasonably necessary protective action, including consulting with individuals or entities that have the ability to take actions to protect the client, and in approrpriate cases, seeking the appointment of a guardian ad litem, conservator or guardian. Extreme caution must be exercised by a lawyer before nominating the lawyer, a member or employee of the lawyer's firm, or a relative within the third degree or relationship to serve as guardian ad litem, conservator or guardian. Id. at 1.14(b). "The fact that a client suffers a disability does not diminish the lawyer's obligation to treat the client with attention and respect. Even if the person has a legal representative, the lawyer should as far as possible accord the represented person the status of client, particularly in maintaining communication." Id. at Comment 2. "...the lawyer must keep the client's interest foremost and except for protective action authorized under paragraph (b), must look to the client and not family members, to make decisions on the client's behalf." Id at Comment 3. "... If the lawyer represents the guardian as distinct from the ward, and is aware that the guardian is acting adversely to the ward's interest, the lawyer may have an obligation to prevent or rectify the guardian's misconduct. Id. at Comment 4. "In determining the extent of the client's diminished capacity, the lawyer should consider and balance such factors as: the client's ability to articulate reasoning leading to a decision, variability of state of mind and ability to appreciate consequences of a decision; the substantive fairness of a decision; and the consistency of a decision with the known long-term commitments and values of the client. In appropriate circumstances the lawyer may seek guidance from an appropriate diagnostician." Id. at Comment 5.
"The court shall appoint a guardian ad litem for an infant or incompetent person not otherwise represented in an action or shall make such other order as it deems proper for the protection of the infant or incompetent person. No judgment shall be rendered against an infant or incompetent until after a defense by a guardian or guardian ad litem, who shall be appointed by the court upon application of any interested party and who shall promptly respond to the claim against the infant or incompetent as provided by these rules." Ark. C. P. R. 17. The guardian may employ a legal counsel in connection with the discharge of his or her duties, and the court shall fix the attorney's fee, which shall be allowed as an item of the expense of administration." Ark. Code § 28-65-319(a)(1).