October 30, 2007

What Do You Have To Do To Get Disbarred In Wisconsin?

People sometimes ask me, can an attorney be disbarred for filing a frivolous lawsuit? No, it takes misconduct more egregious than that. A lot more egregious than that. Apparently, extorting three-way sex with a client and his girlfriend, comingling funds, having a history of substance abuse, using one client’s money to pay another and other client funds to buy a car for yourself, snorting cocaine on camera, violating the very bail release terms the attorney had negotiated for his criminal defense client by doing drugs with him, and worst of all, keeping poor client accounting records is only enough to warrant a three-year suspension, according to the Supreme Court of Wisconsin. So filing a frivolous lawsuit? No probalo!

Amusingly, a substantial issue in the case (see ¶¶ 57-59) was whether the lawyer’s three-way encounter involving himself, his client, and his client’s girlfriend constituted having sex between lawyer and client – they were “sharing” the girlfriend but did not “cross swords,” so to speak, themselves. This was the only one of the fifteen counts of misconduct upon which the Wisconsin Supremes found that the lawyer in question did not violate.

Hat tip to my man Eugene Volokh; if you have time, read the comments to Eugene's post, some of which are quite funny.

No comments: