May 19, 2007
Where Is The Conflict?
The Supreme Court of Washington suspended an attorney for 18 months based on findings of misconduct in representing multiple longshoreman clients in a civil rights action. The court majority found that the attorney had represented conflicting interests and engaged in improper billing practices. The case is somewhat unusual in that there is an impassioned dissent that attacks the conclusion that the representation was improper ("Even if we ignore the paucity of evidence and agree with the specific facts found by the board, these facts do not establish unethical behavior") and suggests that the lawyer should be commended, not disciplined, for bringing the litigation to a highly successful resolution. (Mike Frisch)
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