Tuesday, March 16, 2010
An Arizona Hearing Officer has recommended a public censure with probation for one year of an attorney who represented a client being sued for fees by the client's former attorney. A hearing was scheduled on the collection proceeding after the first attorney obtained a default judgment. The accused attorney filed a pleading seeking a continuance on grounds that she had to fly to Portland for the funeral of her uncle. In fact, the conflict involved an emergengy appointment that the attorney had scheduled for her father to discuss health care for a "gravely ill third-party family member."
The agreement for discipline between the parties, accepted by the hearing officer, stipulated that the falsehood was material to the decision on the continuance request. The attorney was motivated by the desire to protect the privacy of the sick family member. (Mike Frisch)