September 23, 2009
Neglect Of Bankruptcy Clients Leads To Suspension
From the web page of the Ohio Supreme Court:
The Supreme Court of Ohio today indefinitely suspended the law license of [a] Canton attorney... for multiple acts of professional misconduct in his handling of bankruptcy cases on behalf of several different clients.
The Court adopted findings by the Board of Commissioners on Grievances & Discipline that after accepting fee advances and agreeing to represent clients in Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy proceedings, [the attorney] subsequently failed to transmit financial records or make required court filings, failed to appear for scheduled hearings, failed to respond to multiple communications from clients, bankruptcy trustees and other parties, commingled monies held in trust for a client with his own funds, and failed to return unearned fee advances and other monies to clients despite their demands for and entitlement to those funds.
The Court agreed with the board’s conclusions that [his] acts and omissions violated, among others, the state attorney discipline rules that prohibit neglect of entrusted legal matters, failure to carry out a contract of professional employment, intentionally causing harm or prejudice to a client, conduct involving fraud, deceit, dishonesty or misrepresentation, conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, and failure to promptly pay or return moneys to which a client is entitled.
In setting conditions for any future reinstatement of [his] law license, the Court established the requirements that he make prior restitution in specified amounts to specified clients and serve a two-year term of probation following reinstatement. Under today’s order of suspension, [the attorney] is barred from applying for reinstatement until Sept. 24, 2011.
The opinion is linked here. (Mike Frisch)
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