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Commonwealth of Massachusetts

NO. BD-2003-036


S.J.C. Order of Indefinite Suspension entered by Justice Ireland on May 14, 2004.1
(S.J.C. Order of Reinstatement With Conditions Entered by Justice Ireland on July 21, 2009)


The respondent, who was admitted to practice on December 17, 1991, was a partner at a law firm. In the course of his practice, he routinely and properly billed clients for costs and expenses of their cases for which the clients were responsible for reimbursing the firm. However, commencing in or around 2001, the respondent billed $68,000 of his own personal expenses to clients. The clients were unaware that the expenses appearing on their bills were the respondentís personal expenditures and they reimbursed the law firm for those charges when they paid their bills. The respondentís conduct in billing personal expenses to clients violated Mass. R. Prof. C. 8.4(c) and (h).

On or about May 1, 2003, after the law firm questioned the respondent on an expense, the respondent reported his own misconduct to the firm and to Bar Counsel. Thereafter, the respondent resigned as a member of the firm and the firm made immediate restitution in full to the clients. The respondent in turn negotiated a settlement with the firm.

On June 23, 2003, the respondent by agreement was temporarily suspended pending further disciplinary proceedings. This matter then came before the Board on a stipulation of facts and disciplinary violations and a joint recommendation for an indefinite suspension retroactive to the date of the respondentís temporary suspension. On April 12, 2004, the Board of Bar Overseers voted to accept the stipulation and to recommend the agreed-upon disposition to the Supreme Judicial Court. The Court so ordered on May 14, 2004.

1 The complete Order of the Court is available by contacting the Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court for Suffolk County.

2 Compiled by the Board of Bar Overseers based on the record filed with the Supreme Judicial Court.

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