April 2, 2012
Charges Against Presiding Judge Dismissed
The New York Commission on Judicial Conduct dismissed four allegations against the presiding judge of the Appellate Division for the Supreme Court, First Judicial Department.
According to this press release, the Commission dismissed charges that the judge made false attestations on mortgage documents, improperly permitted his executive assistant to privately practice law and arranged or permitted a "no show" job at his court for a former member of the New York City Council.
As to charges of nepotism or favoritism in hiring his ex-wife as a court employee and "the hiring of others such as his secretary's brother, his executive assistant's nephew and his driver's son, the commission found that his hiring practices "both before and during" his tenure "raise serious questions." The charge was dismissed with recommendations to make hiring in the court more uniform, transparent and free from favoritism.
The commission report is linked here. (Mike Frisch)
Nurses Must Report Abuse, Not Grandmothers
A Delaware nurse who had been suspended by the Board of Nursing for two years on charges that she failed to report possible child sex abuse had the sanction overturned by the Superior Court. On the appeal of the board, the decision was affirmed by the Delaware Supreme Court.
The court found no violation of the statutory duty to report because the nurse had not learned of the possible abuse as a result of her nursing duties. Rather, she received second-hand information in her capacity of grandmother. (Mike Frisch)
The Suit that Wasn't
An Arkansas attorney has been suspended for three months for misconduct in connection with the representation of a client in a partition matter.
The attorney failed to file suit for two years. She also failed to provide the client with a writing setting forth the basis and rate of her fees. Then, when the client complained to the Office of Professional Conduct, she engaged in dishonest conduct by faxing OPC a copy of the suit that she claimed she had filed. (Mike Frisch)
April 1, 2012
Blood, Turnips And Bar Admission
An application for bar admission was denied by the Louisiana Supreme Court.
The court found that the applicant had failed to demonstrate good moral character and fitness to practice due to (1) her failure to disclose a pending civil suit in a 2005 bankruptcy matter; (2) adverse information from her former employment as a hospice nurse; and (3) misrepresentations concerning the termination of the hospice employment.
The failure to disclose in the bankruptcy proceeding caused harm to creditors and the trustee to abandon creditor claims.The applicant claimed reliance on her bankruptcy counsel and rasoned that: "you can't get blood out of a turnip."
Two justices dissented. One would grant conditional admission. (Mike Frisch)