Saturday, September 28, 2019

Ethics Of Go Fund Me

A "donations" web page for a law firm and other misconduct drew a three-year suspension from the New York Appellate Division for the Fourth Judicial Department. 

By order entered December 5, 2017, this Court suspended respondent from the practice of law during the pendency of a disciplinary investigation, pursuant to 22 NYCRR 1240.9 (a), based on uncontroverted proof that she made false or misleading statements on her law firm website and failed to respond to a lawful demand of the Grievance Committee.

In addition to two client complaints and failure to respond

With respect to charge three, respondent admits that, before she was suspended on an interim basis in December 2017, she used her law firm website to solicit donations to a fund entitled “law firm support fund for indigent clients and attorneys” and that any such donations would have been deposited into a bank account in her own name. Respondent also admits that, although her website stated that her law firm was “a New York firm, with Arizona PLLC” that maintained “satellite offices” in Oklahoma, she was not admitted to practice law in Arizona or Oklahoma.


In determining an appropriate sanction, we have considered the nature of respondent’s admitted misconduct, which includes direct harm to two clients, and her failure to participate in this proceeding. Accordingly, we conclude that respondent should be suspended from the practice of law for a period of three years and until further order of this Court.

(Mike Frisch)

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