Wisconsin Lawyer: Lawyer Discipline:

State Bar of Wisconsin

Sign In
    Wisconsin LawyerWisconsin Lawyer

News & Pubs Search

Advanced

    Lawyer Discipline

    Share This:

    Wisconsin Lawyer
    Vol. 77, No. 7, July 2004

    Lawyer Discipline


    The Office of Lawyer Regulation (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 federal felony.

    The court ordered the suspension retroactive to Nov. 17, 2003, the date on which Echavarria's license was summarily suspended based on her criminal conviction.

    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 appropriate.

    Disciplinary Proceedings against Kimberly A. Theobald

    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 22.03(2).

    The OLR had recommended that Theobald be publicly reprimanded. Theobald had no prior disciplinary history.




To view or add comment, Login