Monday, March 14, 2011
In 2002, Linda Lowney drafted a will for Thor Tollefsen, a client who was thirty years her elder. The will provided for his sister and two nieces in Norway to receive his estate. In 2005, Tollefsen gave Lowney $339,000 with his nieces’s consent, and they got married in 2006. Later that year, Tollefsen requested a divorce. He was moved to a nursing home in 2007 where he died.
Recently, a State Bar Court judge ruled that the marriage was a sham. After finding that Lowney took advantage of Tollefsen, the judge ordered Lowney suspended from the practice of law. Lowney’s lawyer claims that the judge misunderstood the relationship and that the two had an actual marriage.
See Martha Neil, Lawyer is Suspended Over Her Marriage to an Elderly Client, ABA Journal, Mar. 9, 2011.