Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Better Late Than Never

An Ohio attorney who belatedly introduced mitigating evidence was indefinitely suspended, rather than disbarred, as a result.

The web page of the Ohio Supreme Court notes:

After [the attorney] failed to answer  the complaint filed against him with the state disciplinary board or to otherwise  cooperate  with the board’s proceedings,  the commissioners recommended that he be permanently disbarred.  [He] filed a belated motion with the court  seeking to remand  his case for further  proceedings, asserting that a previously undiagnosed psychological  condition had interfered with his capacity to  defend himself.  The court remanded the  case for the limited purpose of allowing the board to consider any mitigating  effects of the newly offered psychological evidence. 

In  today’s decision the court noted that after evaluating the proffered evidence,  the board amended its recommended sanction from disbarment to an indefinite  suspension.  The court adopted the  board’s recommendation, and specified that any future reinstatement of  [the attorney's] license will be conditioned on his submission of proof that he has  complied with a recovery contract with the Ohio Lawyers Assistance Program  (OLAP), completed psychiatric treatment, follow up care and reporting  requirements imposed by OLAP and his psychiatrist, and submitted a statement  from a qualified mental health professional that he is capable of returning to  the competent, ethical and professional practice of law.

The court's opinion is linked here. (Mike Frisch)

Bar Discipline & Process | Permalink

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