July 10, 2008
Interim Suspension For Non-Cooperation
The New York Appellate Division for the First Judicial Department suspended an attorney pending the completion of disciplinary proceedings for failure to copoperate with the investigation into allegations that he had mishandled an estate matter. The attorney claimed that he suffered from depression but did not provide medical documentation:
...respondent's conduct evinces willful noncompliance with the Committee's investigation, warranting his immediate suspension. As fully detailed above, respondent ignored the Committee's numerous written and phone demands for an answer. Respondent submitted an answer only after the Committee obtained a subpoena duces tecum from this Court directing respondent's appearance for a deposition. Besides submitting a belated answer, respondent failed to fulfil his repeated promises to conclude all the requisite work in his capacity as the attorney for the Heelan Estate, including providing an accounting and winding up the estate. To exacerbate matters, respondent failed to turn over the file for the estate to successor counsel. Further, respondent failed to provide all the documents requested by the Committee during his February 2007, deposition.
Respondent's excuse of suffering from several medical conditions is unavailing. Respondent has failed to supply the Committee with any documentation confirming his medical conditions. Under the circumstances, this Court must draw "a negative inference from respondent's failure to provide proof of his condition[s]."
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