Friday, September 18, 2020
The New York attorney discipline system has a singularly speedy and harsh response to an attorney's failure to respond to a complaint.
The Appellate Division for the First Judicial Department entered a disbarment order yesterday
In August 2019, the Attorney Grievance Committee (AGC) moved for respondent's immediate suspension from the practice of law, pursuant to the Rules for Attorney Disciplinary Matters (22 NYCRR) § 1240.9(a)(3), based on her failure to answer a complaint alleging that she sent disturbing emails to the New York City Bar Association which raised questions as to her mental health. Respondent submitted an untimely response in opposition to the AGC's motion wherein she failed to adequately address the content of the emails at issue.
Accordingly, by order of November 14, 2019, this Court immediately suspended respondent from the practice of law until further order of the Court without prejudice to her seeking to convert her interim suspension for noncooperation to a medical suspension pursuant to 22 NYCRR 1240.14(b) if she was so advised (179 AD3d 11 [1st Dept 2019]).
Inasmuch as more than six months have elapsed since this Court's November 14, 2019 suspension order, and respondent has neither responded to, nor appeared for, further investigatory or disciplinary proceedings, nor requested a post-suspension hearing, the AGC's motion for an order disbarring respondent pursuant to 22 NYCRR 1240.9(b) should be granted and her name stricken from the roll of attorneys in the State of New York (see Matter of Shapiro, 184 AD3d 352 [1st Dept 2020]; Matter of Matic, 173 AD3d 83 [1st Dept 2019]).