As a California resident and consumer who might reasonably have legal issues and challenges to contend with occasionally, can you imagine a playing field for lawyers in the state that doesn’t sufficiently control them when they act in unlawful ways?
California legal authorities — prominently regulators from the State Bar — can’t, and frequently take action against attorneys they are concerned with that is intended to properly discipline them for wrongful behavior and simultaneously promote the general public’s best interests.
Although it might arguably be reasonable for a lay person to assume that legal officials will typically go soft on their brethren who come up short in terms of professionalism, competence, client-directed honesty and so forth, that assumption would be misplaced.
The fact is that the State Bar frequently disciplines problem practitioners in stringent and meaningful ways, which sometimes includes suspension and even life-long disbarment.
Several cases in point were recently underscored in one publication citing disciplinary bar action taken against several Southern California attorneys.
One case resulting in disbarment featured a lawyer’s conduct unrelated to client representation. Bar examiners found that public fighting and shoplifting constituted acts within the realm of so-called “moral turpitude” rendering that attorney unfit for client advocacy.
That is notable for any state resident reasonably relying upon the due professionalism of a trusted attorney. If a retained lawyer steals from others and cannot reasonably control himself or herself, that is certainly a legitimate concern for a client.
Other cited disciplinary actions — bringing both disbarment and suspension, respectively — related to inappropriate management of client funds (a common professional breach), perjury and failure to perform a client matter competently.
There is no place — nor should there ever be, of course — for California attorneys who disparage their profession and harm clients through substandard conduct and behaviors.
Individuals who have relied upon attorneys for competent representation and have questions or concerns regarding the subject matter discussed in today’s blog post can contact a proven California legal malpractice attorney for information and guidance.