Wednesday, November 23, 2022
An attorney admitted in 1968 has had his license revoked by the Wisconsin Supreme Court notwithstanding his efforts to voluntarily surrender
We agree with the referee that the nature, extent, and severity of misconduct involved here "calls for a sanction substantially more severe" than the six-month suspension we meted out in Constant I. The referee discussed several prior disciplinary cases where this court concluded that revocation of an attorney's license was a proper sanction for repeated occurrences of conversion of client trust funds. While the referee found distinguishing facts in several of these cases, and while we agree that no two cases are the same and each must be decided on its own particular facts, we conclude that many of the cases the referee discussed demonstrate that revocation is the appropriate sanction in the present matter.
The misconduct here involves repeated instances of Attorney Constant converting large sums of client trust funds for his personal use, failing to advise his clients of the status of their cases and settlement proceedings, multiple acts of dishonesty in attempting to falsely characterize disbursements, abandoning and failing to communicate with his clients, an act of settling a claim without his client's permission, and practicing law while his license was suspended for engaging in similar conduct in the past. Attorney Constant has not acknowledged the wrongful nature of his actions, shown any remorse, or attempted to make restitution. Nor is there any evidence of other mitigating factors that could explain Attorney Constant's actions...Revocation is necessary given the seriousness of Attorney Constant's misconduct, the harm caused to his clients, his prior disciplinary history, and the need to deter attorneys from engaging in similar misconduct and protect the public.