Friday, November 16, 2018

Snapchat Couch Fee Proposal Leads To Bar Charges

The Illinois Administrator has filed a complaint alleging misconduct in a domestic relations matter.

 In or around September 2017, C.S. telephoned Respondent to discuss a possible divorce from her husband.

In late September or early October, C.S. met with Respondent at his law office to discuss a possible divorce action. C.S. revealed many personal details to Respondent about herself and her relationship with her husband. Respondent indicated to C.S. that he required a retainer to proceed with a dissolution action. C.S. told Respondent that she was in poor financial shape and Respondent indicated that he might be able to work out a payment plan. C.S. indicated to Respondent that she would attempt to secure funds for his retainer.

On December 25, 2017, C.S. left a telephone message for Respondent concerning the actions of her husband and she requested that Respondent file divorce papers as soon as possible.

During the evening of December 25, 2017, C.S. received a Snapchat friend request from Respondent and she accepted the request.

On or about December 26, 2017, C.S. received a Snapchat message from Respondent inquiring about her ability to pay his attorney fees. C.S. responded that her financial condition was even worse than when she met with him.

On or about December 28, 2017, Respondent sent C.S. a Snapchat message which stated in part, "I think I have a solution…", "A free one…", "And we can start the proceedings asap."

In Snapchat messages on or about December 26, 2017 through December 28, 2017, Respondent proposed to C.S. that she engage in sex with Respondent and/or provide him with nude pictures in exchange for legal representation in her divorce case.

In one Snapchat message Respondent sent to C.S. on December 28, 2017, Respondent proposed that C.S. provide oral sex or masturbation to Respondent: "Maybe…mouth or hand? Or anything you’d be comfortable with."

In another Snapchat message to C.S., Respondent stated, "I was thinking maybe some snaps and pictures and you let me screenshot them? And I’ll do all the paperwork."

On or about December 28, 2017, the following Snapchat exchange occurred between Respondent and C.S.:

Respondent: "I feel anxious about that tbh [to be honest]? I’ve never done that…and if anyone found out I could and most likely would lose my law license. But…essentially no fees. I’ll try to get atty fees from [C.S.’s husband] but if I can’t there’s nothing on you."

C.S.: "You def would. Not gonna say anything to anyone."

Respondent: "But…once or twice a week you just…take care of me I suppose while trying to get the divorce done. Maybe some snaps. That’s about it."

C..S: "Give me just a little bit. Just got to my sisters house. My fuel pump is fkd. Have the worst luck in life since I got with this dumbass."

Respondent: "Are you considering that option?"

C.S.: "Idk [I don’t know]"

Respondent: "No pressure…I understand…it won’t be awkward either wat [sic]."

Respondent: "Way. It might save you 2-3000 tho."

On or about January 9, 2018, C.S. decided not to retain Respondent for her divorce case and she reported Respondent’s conduct to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

The complaint alleges a conflict of interest and a violation of criminal law. (Mike Frisch)

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_profession/2018/11/the-illinois-supreme-court-has-taken-action-in-a-number-of-bar-discipline-matters-per-this-recent-announcement-some-highli.html

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