Monday, September 15, 2008

Guilt By Association

A Louisiana hearing committee has recommended a suspension of two years with an additional one year of supervision if the attorney is reinstated. The complex case involved a attorney who had been retained by two clients to pursue a class action lawsuit against Equitable Life Assurance Company. After a three-day hearing, class certification was denied. The lawyer had associated with the law firm of O'Quinn and Lamineck in the representation, which in turn associated with Milberg Weiss. The case settled for $15 million, only $4 million of which went to the claimants. The misconduct involved a number of rule violations including failure to communicate, settling the claims without the input or approval of the clients, conflicts of interest, excessive fees and dishonesty. The decision notes that no one from the out-of-state law firms provided any testimony in the disciplinary case. (Mike Frisch)

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