Vol. 77, No. 7, July
The Office of Lawyer
(formerly known as the Board of Attorneys Professional
Responsibility), an agency of the Wisconsin Supreme Court and component
of the lawyer regulation system, assists the court in carrying out its
constitutional responsibility to supervise the practice of law and
protect the public from misconduct by persons practicing law in
Wisconsin. The Office of Lawyer Regulation has offices located at Suite
315, 110 E. Main St., Madison, WI 53703, and Suite 300, 342 N. Water
St., Milwaukee, WI 53202. Toll-free telephone: (877) 315-6941.
Disciplinary Proceeding against
Gricel S. Echavarria
On May 12, 2004, the Wisconsin Supreme Court suspended the law
license of Gricel S. Echavarria, 31, Madison, for two years. (See
Disciplinary Proceedings against Echavarria, 2004 WI 51.)
Echavarria's misconduct, conspiracy to produce and transfer false
identification documents, counterfeit resident alien cards, and
counterfeit Social Security cards, resulted in her conviction of a
The court ordered the suspension retroactive to Nov. 17, 2003, the
date on which Echavarria's license was summarily suspended based on her
Summary Suspension of Mark E. Sostarich
On May 18, 2004, the Wisconsin Supreme Court summarily suspended the
law license of Mark S. Sostarich, 51, Milwaukee.
The Office of Lawyer Regulation (OLR) had moved for a summary
suspension based upon Sostarich's entering a guilty plea in federal
court to one count of conspiracy to commit offenses involving federal
program funds. The court ordered Sostarich to show cause why the OLR's
motion should not be granted. Sostarich opposed the motion. The OLR
filed a reply. The court's suspension order stated that it had carefully
considered the matter and agreed that a summary suspension was
Disciplinary Proceedings against Kimberly A.
On May 27, 2004, the Wisconsin Supreme Court publicly reprimanded
Kimberly A. Theobald, 47, Waukesha, for misconduct in four separate
client matters. The court also ordered Theobald to pay the $3,289.51
costs of the disciplinary proceeding. (See Disciplinary Proceedings
against Theobald, 2004 WI 59.)
The first matter relates to Theobald's representation of a client in
a divorce matter. In that matter, Theobald failed to file a bankruptcy
petition for the client for more than four months and failed to contact
the client regarding information needed to complete the bankruptcy,
thereby violating SCR 20:1.3 (failing to act with reasonable diligence
and promptness in representing a client) and SCR 20:1.4(a) (failing to
keep the client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and
failing to promptly comply with reasonable requests for information).
During the investigation of that matter, Theobald failed on several
occasions to timely respond to inquiries by the OLR's predecessor, the
Board of Attorneys Professional Responsibility, in violation of what is
now SCR 22.03(2) (failing to respond to an investigation).
The second matter relates to Theobald's representation of a client on
a tax matter. In that matter, Theobald failed to complete the client's
tax returns for more than 11 months, missing a deadline in the process,
which caused interest and penalty charges to be imposed on the client.
Theobald also failed to contact the client regarding information needed
to complete the tax returns, thereby violating SCR 20:1.3. Theobald also
failed to respond to the client's telephone request for information, in
violation of SCR 20:1.4(a), and failed to respond to the OLR's inquiries
in connection with the matter, in violation of SCR 22.03(2).
The third matter relates to Theobald's representation of a client who
sought to protect her son's interest in her ex-spouse's estate. In that
matter, Theobald failed to take timely action to represent the interests
of her client and the client's son, in violation of SCR 20:1.3. Theobald
also failed to send the client her file for more than two months after
being terminated from representation, thereby violating SCR 20:1.16(d)
(failing to timely surrender papers and property to which the client is
entitled). Theobald again failed to timely respond to the OLR's request
for information, resulting in another violation of SCR 22.03(2).
The fourth matter relates to Theobald's representation of a client in
a matter involving a failure to pay child support. In that matter,
Theobald failed to cooperate with the OLR, in violation of SCR
The OLR had recommended that Theobald be publicly reprimanded.
Theobald had no prior disciplinary history.