Monday, August 27, 2007

Finding Of Frivolity Upheld

An attorney who had been reprimanded by the Connecticut Statewide Grievance Commission for violating Rule 3.1 appealed to the Connecticut Appellate Court. The attorney had alleged that opposing counsel and the arbitrator in a litigated matter had engaged in fraud and collusion. The court held that the finding of misconduct was not clearly erroneous: the basis was "not that he alleged partiality or corruption...but rather that he persisted in that allegation despite not having a scintilla of evidence to support it." An allegation made in good faith in reliance on the claims of the client may violate the rule if the lawyer persists in the claim without finding supporting evidence. The court affirmed the reprimand. A concurring opinion would uphold the reprimand on a narrower ground, as the lawyer persisted despite the client's instruction to abandon the claim (Mike Frisch)

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