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    Lawyer Discipline

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    Public Discipline

    Disciplinary Proceedings Against John R. Maynard

    On March 14, 2014, the Wisconsin Supreme Court suspended the law license of John R. Maynard, Milwaukee, for one year. Disciplinary Proceedings Against Maynard, 2014 WI 13.

    The court previously had suspended Maynard’s law license for 90 days, effective Feb. 1, 2010. See In re Disciplinary Proceedings Against Maynard, 2009 WI 106, 322 Wis. 2d 53, 776 N.W.2d 583. Shortly before the effective date of that suspension, Maynard initiated a lawsuit by filing a complaint that the circuit court later determined was frivolous. The conduct violated SCR 20:3.1(a), concerning meritorious claims and contentions.

    When the 2010 disciplinary suspension went into effect, Maynard was attorney of record in seven pending court cases and also was performing legal services for other clients. In violation of the suspension requirements of SCR 22.26(1), enforced via SCR 20:8.4(f), Maynard failed to give each of the clients timely written notice of the suspension and of his consequent inability to continue as counsel. He continued to practice law in Wisconsin after the effective date of the suspension, in violation of SCR 20:5.5(a)(1) and SCR 22.26(2).

    Maynard further violated SCR 20:5.5(a)(1) by practicing law as general counsel for a corporation in Georgia while unlicensed in that state and suspended in Wisconsin. While suspended, Maynard made false and misleading communications, including by his use of law firm letterhead, that he was an attorney permitted to practice in Wisconsin. These actions violated SCR 20:7.1(a) and SCR 20:7.5(a).

    Three of the nine counts against Maynard involved dishonesty, deceit, or misrepresentation in violation of SCR 20:8.4(c). Maynard falsely swore by affidavit that he had complied with the suspension order. Knowing the information in the affidavit to be inaccurate and incomplete, Maynard omitted the names of clients with pending legal matters, failed to identify all pending court matters, and falsely claimed his name was removed from the law firm’s stationery. While suspended, Maynard misrepresented himself to counsel for another party as an attorney. He made conflicting representations about whether he or his partner drafted articles of amendment for a corporation.

    In various communications he made dishonest, deceitful, or misleading representations about practicing law, attending hearings, undertaking work for clients, his knowledge of license reinstatement procedures, and whether any grievances were pending against him. Maynard knowingly made a false statement to a court that his license had been reinstated, misconduct that violated SCR 20:3.3(a)(1) in addition to SCR 20:8.4(c).

    In the course of the Office of Lawyer Regulation’s investigation, Maynard gave false and misleading information. He failed to fully and fairly disclose all facts and circumstances pertaining to the misconduct and failed to answer questions and to produce requested documents and information. His conduct violated SCR 22.03(2) and (6), enforced via SCR 20:8.4(h).

    Maynard’s only prior discipline was the 90-day suspension.

    Private Discipline

    Lack of Diligence; Failure to Communicate; Failure to Promptly Respond to Request for Information Concerning Fees

    Violations of SCR 20:1.3, 20:1.4(a)(3), and 20:1.5(b)(3)

    An attorney represented a man in a long-term disability insurance claim. The attorney filed a summons and complaint against the insurer alleging that the client was accidentally injured in an accident, rendered disabled, and entitled to benefits under a long-term disability insurance policy. Thereafter, the attorney failed to properly serve defendants with an authenticated copy of the summons and complaint, resulting in dismissal of the action.

    The attorney later commenced a second action, and the court also dismissed that action. The two state court actions had also been removed to federal court. The federal cases were ultimately dismissed as well.

    The case file showed no meaningful action taken by the attorney for more than three years before the attorney’s filing of the summons and complaint. The attorney acknowledged that no action was commenced before expiration of the applicable statute of limitation.

    By failing to commence an action regarding the client’s long-term disability benefits before the expiration of the statute of limitation, and by otherwise failing to act in furtherance of the client’s interests in the case, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.3.

    By failing to inform the client of the defendants’ efforts to dismiss the cases and of case proceedings scheduled and thereafter missed and by otherwise failing to keep the client apprised of significant case developments, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.4(a)(3).

    By failing to promptly respond to the client’s request for information regarding the fee agreement, even after receiving the client’s letter indicating that the client believed they had a contingent fee agreement, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.5(b)(3).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Criminal Act Reflecting Adversely on Fitness to Practice; Failure to Report Criminal Conviction

    Violations of SCR 20:8.4(b) and 21.15(5)

    An attorney was charged with second-offense operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) and operating with a prohibited alcohol concentration (PAC) of 0.08 or more. The charges followed a traffic stop for speeding. The Wisconsin State Patrol trooper who conducted the stop detected a strong odor of intoxicants on the attorney’s breath and noted that the attorney was slurring his words. After conducting field-sobriety tests, the trooper placed the attorney under arrest. A chemical test indicated the attorney’s blood alcohol content to be .149 g/100 mL.

    Pursuant to a no-contest plea, the attorney was convicted of second-offense OWI. The second-offense operating with PAC 0.08 or more charge was dismissed on the prosecutor’s motion. The attorney received a sentence of five days in jail with Huber privileges, driver’s license revocation for 12 months, and ignition-interlock installation for 12 months. The court also ordered the attorney to undergo an alcohol assessment, follow through on treatment, and pay a fine.

    The attorney failed to report the criminal conviction to the supreme court clerk or the Office of Lawyer Regulation (OLR), which learned of the criminal conviction one year later through another source. In subsequent correspondence to the OLR, the attorney stated that he had been unaware of the obligation to report a criminal conviction.

    By engaging in conduct leading to a misdemeanor conviction of second-offense OWI, the attorney violated SCR 20:8.4(b).

    By failing to report the criminal conviction to the supreme court clerk and the OLR, the attorney violated SCR 21.15(5), which is enforced under the Rules of Professional Conduct through SCR 20:8.4(f).

    Lack of Diligence; Failure to Communicate; Providing Improper Financial Assistance to Client

    Violations of SCR 20:1.3, 20:1.4(a)(3), and 20:1.8(e)

    An attorney represented a woman in a personal injury claim regarding injuries she sustained from a fall. The property owner’s insurance company determined its insured was not liable and offered to pay only the medical bills (capped at $1,000) stemming from the client’s injuries. The attorney did not commence a personal injury action on behalf of the client before expiration of the three-year statute of limitation. No action was taken on the insurance company’s offer.

    The attorney provided three checks from the firm’s business account to the client as advances on the personal injury claim. The three advance checks, which totaled $6,500, were sent to the client after the statute of limitation expired.

    By failing to commence a personal injury action before expiration of the three-year statute of limitation, and by otherwise failing to act in furtherance of the client’s interests in the personal injury claim, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.3.

    By failing to keep the client reasonably and accurately informed regarding the status of the personal injury claim, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.4(a)(3).

    By providing financial assistance to the client of $6,500, as advances on the client’s personal injury claim, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.8(e).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Failure to Have Written Fee Agreement in Criminal Matter

    Violations of SCR 20:1.5(b)(1) and (2)

    An attorney represented a man in multiple criminal cases. The man paid fees to the attorney totaling $5,800.

    There was no written fee agreement governing the terms of representation. The attorney first indicated that an hourly fee was in place or could at least be used as a means of establishing the reasonableness of his fee. The attorney contradicted the suggestion of an hourly fee in later correspondence, in which he stated, “There are no billing records since [the client] was quoted a flat fee.”

    Pursuant to SCR 20:1.0(ag), a flat fee is one type of an advanced fee, in that it is obtained in contemplation of providing future services. SCR 20:1.0(ag) states in part, “Any amount paid to a lawyer in contemplation of future services whether on an hourly, flat or other basis, is an advanced fee regardless of whether that fee is characterized as an ‘advanced fee,’ ‘minimum fee,’ ‘nonrefundable fee,’ or any other characterization.”

    The attorney violated SCR 20:1.5(b)(1) and (2) by receiving funds in excess of $1,000 in contemplation of providing future legal services to the client, regardless of whether the funds constituted a flat fee or an advance toward fees to be charged on an hourly rate basis; and by failing to communicate to the client in writing the scope of the representation, the basis or rate of his fee, the purpose and effect of the advanced fee, and the expenses for which the client would be responsible.

    The attorney had several prior reprimands and a prior suspension. The imposition of a private reprimand in this matter takes into consideration his prior disciplinary history.

    Failure to Hold Funds in Trust; Failure to Maintain Trust Account Records; Disbursing Cash from Trust Account; Disbursing Funds Before Funds Available; Making Electronic Payments from Trust Account

    Violations of SCR 20:1.15(b), (e)(4)a. and d., (e)(5)a., and (f)(1)

    On Nov. 29, 2010, there was an overdraft of $1,298.77 on an attorney’s trust account when a trust account check was presented and paid. Investigation of this overdraft revealed problems with the attorney’s trust account management.

    By issuing to himself a trust account check in the amount of $2,326.26 for earned fees and costs when he did not have sufficient funds on deposit to cover the check, resulting in a trust account overdraft (which was cured by a later deposit of client funds), the attorney violated SCR 20:1.15(b)(1).

    By failing to maintain complete transaction registers, subsidiary client ledgers, and monthly trust account reconciliations, the attorney violated the record-keeping requirements of SCR 20:1.15(f)(1).

    By making five cash disbursements totaling $7,413.34 from the trust account, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.15(e)(4)a.

    By making three cash disbursements to himself from the trust account in the amounts of $200, $250, and $300 immediately after depositing checks from his clients in those same amounts and before such checks had a chance to clear, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.15(e)(5)a.

    By making two electronic ACH payments from his trust account totaling $11,200 relating to a client matter, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.15(e)(4)d.

    The attorney had a previous private reprimand for conduct unrelated to his trust account.

    Special Conflicts of Interest for Former and Current Governmental Officers and Employees

    Violation of SCR 20:1.11(d)(2)(i)

    An attorney served as a village board president and also was a member of the village plan commission. The attorney did not serve as counsel for the village.

    The attorney had a client who owned undeveloped land in the village. A third party wanted to purchase a portion of the land and erect a building on it. The third party’s offer was conditioned on the client’s cooperation in obtaining necessary governmental approvals. The third party also approached the attorney in the attorney’s capacity as village board president to discuss project incentives.

    The village plan commission recommended approval of the third party’s application for a conditional-use permit. The attorney, although present when the matter was before the plan commission, did not comment, citing a conflict of interest. The village board approved the permit, with the attorney abstaining.

    The third party approached the village administrator regarding the possibility of a development agreement, and the third party and the village ultimately entered such an agreement. The attorney, as village board president, received and reviewed multiple development-agreement drafts, and asked the village attorney to make certain modifications to the development agreement.

    The attorney violated SCR 20:1.11(d)(2)(i) by working with village trustees, the village attorney, and the village administrator to define and offer incentives to the third party, to whom the attorney’s client was selling land, so as to facilitate completion of the transaction, while serving as village board president.

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Criminal Act that Reflects Adversely on Lawyer’s Fitness to Practice

    Violation of SCR 20:8.4(b)

    An attorney was convicted in October 2011 of misdemeanor possession of THC, following a June 2011 traffic stop. The officer stopped the attorney’s vehicle for speeding. While speaking with the attorney, the officer smelled a strong odor of raw marijuana. During a search of the attorney’s vehicle, the officer found marijuana in a zip-lock bag. The attorney’s sentence was a fine and forfeiture of $325.

    By engaging in conduct leading to a conviction of misdemeanor possession of THC, the attorney violated SCR 20:8.4(b), which states, “It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to … commit a criminal act that reflects adversely on the lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects.”

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Committing Criminal Act; Failure to Notify Supreme Court Clerk of Conviction

    Violations of SCR 20:8.4(b) and 21.15(5)

    An attorney was involved in a domestic incident that resulted in the attorney pleading guilty to a charge of misdemeanor battery – domestic abuse and being placed on probation and ordered to comply with conditions including maintaining sobriety, receiving counseling, and undergoing an alcohol or other drug assessment and treatment. The attorney complied with his duty under SCR 21.15(5) to provide the OLR with written notice of his conviction, but he did not comply with his duty under the same rule to provide written notice of his conviction to the supreme court clerk.

    By engaging in conduct leading to a criminal conviction of misdemeanor battery – domestic abuse, the attorney violated SCR 20:8.4(b). By failing to provide written notice of his finding of guilt or conviction of a crime to the supreme court clerk within five days after the finding or conviction, the attorney violated SCR 21.15(5). SCR 21.15(5) is enforced under the Rules of Professional Conduct via SCR 20:8.4(f).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Practicing While Administratively Suspended; Failure to Refund Unearned Fees

    Violations of SCR 10.03(6) and 20:1.16(d).

    On Nov. 1, 2011, the State Bar of Wisconsin suspended an attorney’s license for failure to pay annual State Bar dues. Between Nov. 2 and Nov. 18, 2011, the attorney filed a complaint in a Jackson County case, filed an answer and counterclaim in a Jefferson County case, filed notices of appearance in two Rock County cases, participated in a telephone conference with a judge’s assistant, attempted to personally serve a summons on a third-party defendant in another Rock County case, and sent a letter to the court in a Waukesha County case. The attorney’s law license was reinstated on Nov. 19, 2011.

    By engaging in the practice of law with respect to at least seven different client matters between Nov. 2, 2011 and Nov. 18, 2011 while his license to practice law in Wisconsin was suspended for failure to pay State Bar dues, the attorney violated SCR 10.03(6), as enforced via SCR 20:8.4(f).

    In August 2012, the attorney represented a client in a criminal law matter, for which the client paid the attorney an advanced fee of $2,000. The attorney made one initial court appearance before being terminated by the client. In October 2012, the attorney sent the client a billing statement and a partial-refund check for $1,400, which was returned because of insufficient funds in the attorney’s account. Thereafter, the attorney failed to provide a replacement refund check until April 2013. By failing to refund the unearned $1,400 portion of the advanced fee until approximately eight months later, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.16(d).

    The attorney had a prior public reprimand for unrelated misconduct.

    Lack of Diligence; Violating Statute Regulating Conduct of Lawyers

    Violations of SCR 20:1.3 and 20:8.4(f)

    An attorney represented a woman in an annulment proceeding. A trial was held, and the court ordered the marriage annulled.

    Wisconsin Statutes section 767.37(1)(a) requires drafting, submitting to the court, and filing with the clerk of circuit court the findings of fact, conclusions of law, and judgment of annulment within 30 days after judgment is granted at trial. The attorney failed to do so.

    In a dismissal order sent to the attorney, the judge stated that the court had conducted the annulment hearing but the judgment had not been filed. The judge ordered, “This case is dismissed twenty days after the date of this Order unless good cause is shown within the twenty days why this order should not take effect.” The attorney did not respond to the dismissal order within 20 days, and the judge dismissed the case. Ultimately, the attorney filed a motion to reopen the case, the court reopened the case, and the judgment of annulment was filed.

    By failing to draft, submit to the court, and file with the clerk of circuit court the findings of fact, conclusions of law, and judgment of annulment for more than one year after judgment was granted at trial, and by failing to act within 20 days after receipt of the dismissal order that stated judgment had not been filed, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.3.

    By failing to draft, submit to the court, and file with the clerk of circuit court the findings of fact, conclusions of law, and judgment of annulment within 30 days after judgment was granted at trial, the attorney violated Wis. Stat. section 767.37(1)(a) and thereby violated SCR 20:8.4(f).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Lack of Communication

    Violations of SCR 20:1.4(a)(2) and (b)

    Two men hired a lawyer to represent them in their roles as co-personal representatives of their father’s estate. The clients and the lawyer agreed that the estate would file a QTIP election on the Wisconsin estate tax return with the goal of deferring, until the death of the decedent’s spouse, certain taxes otherwise due on the filing of the estate’s return. The decedent’s accountant agreed to prepare the return, which was due on Oct. 1, 2008.

    On Sept. 25, 2008, the decedent’s accountant notified the lawyer’s paralegal that he did not feel competent to complete the Wisconsin estate tax return. The firm contacted an accountant, known to the firm from prior client matters, who agreed to prepare the return.

    On Sept. 30, 2008, the successor accountant advised the lawyer that he did not believe the estate qualified for the QTIP election. The lawyer relied on the accountant’s professional opinion that the estate did not qualify for the QTIP election. On Oct. 1, 2008, the lawyer’s paralegal communicated to the clients that the QTIP election would not be filed and, therefore, the estate needed to pay $79,622 in taxes with the return that was due to be filed on that day.

    The lawyer violated SCR 20:1.4(a)(2) and (b) by failing, before the return was filed, to explain to the clients or to cause his paralegal to explain to them 1) the basis for the successor accountant’s opinion; 2) that the estate was entitled to consider whether to follow the accountant’s advice, seek other opinions, or proceed with making the election; and 3) the potential risks if the estate decided to file the election despite the accountant’s advice.

    The lawyer has no prior discipline.

    Prospective-Client Conflict of Interest

    Violation of SCR 20:1.18(c)

    An attorney was consulted by a prospective client regarding a postdivorce child-custody dispute. The prospective client shared with the lawyer personal thoughts and impressions regarding the facts of the case and possible litigation strategies, as well as concerns about the children and the former spouse. The prospective client hired a different lawyer for the representation. Later, the attorney initially consulted by the prospective client undertook the representation of the former spouse in the identical matter.

    By undertaking the representation of the former spouse, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.18(c), which provides that a lawyer “shall not represent a client with interests materially adverse to those of a prospective client in the same or a substantially related matter if the lawyer received information from the prospective client that could be significantly harmful to that person in the matter.”

    Representing Client After Discharge; Conduct Involving Dishonesty, Fraud, Deceit, or Misrepresentation

    Violations of SCR 20:1.16(a)(3) and 20:8.4(c) 

    An attorney represented a client in a sexual-harassment civil rights action against a municipality. The attorney filed a claim with the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, Equal Rights Division (ERD). Following a determination by the ERD that the claim lacked probable cause, the attorney wrote to the client and stated that his representation was complete. However, the attorney advised the client that she could file an appeal on her own. 

    The client proceeded to pursue her claim pro se. In January 2009, an assistant city attorney wrote to the attorney and made a settlement offer. Without approval from the former client, the attorney wrote to the assistant city attorney, stated that he appeared on the client’s behalf and was attempting to contact his client, and claimed a lien on any proceeds of the settlement.  The attorney then wrote to the former client asking that she contact him about a settlement proposal. The client and the attorney subsequently disputed the amount of attorney fees owed, as well as other matters. The attorney ultimately wrote to the assistant city attorney and stated he no longer represented the former client and revoked any lien on settlement proceeds.

    By purporting to represent a client in settlement negotiations following termination of the attorney-client relationship, the attorney violated SCR 20:1.6(a)(3). By writing to the assistant city attorney and falsely claiming that he represented the former client, the attorney violated SCR 20:8.4(c).

    The attorney had one prior private reprimand.

    Municipal Citation for Retail Theft

    Violation of SCR 20:8.4(c)

    An attorney was apprehended leaving a store without paying for $35.59 worth of merchandise that was concealed in her bag. The city police department issued the attorney a municipal citation for retail theft. The attorney pleaded no contest and was fined $177.

    By engaging in conduct leading to a municipal citation for retail theft, the attorney violated SCR 20:8.4(c).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Lack of Diligence

    Violation of SCR 20:1.3

    A woman hired an attorney to represent her in seeking a domestic-abuse restraining order and a divorce. The attorney filed petitions in both matters. The attorney successfully represented the woman in obtaining a restraining order against her husband.

    The parties and their counsel attended a temporary hearing held by a family court commissioner in the divorce case. Over the next three months, the attorneys had some discussions regarding the terms ordered by the family court commissioner. The husband’s attorney made several requests for the woman’s attorney, as petitioner’s counsel, to prepare a temporary order.

    Approximately three months after the temporary hearing, the woman’s attorney sent a proposed temporary order to the husband’s attorney, who suggested revisions. The woman’s attorney did not deliver a final draft of the temporary order to adverse counsel until a year after the temporary hearing. The temporary order was filed 13 months after the temporary hearing.

    The absence of a written order caused problems with enforcing the temporary order. The parties largely disregarded the order’s terms during pendency of the case.

    By failing to accomplish the filing of the temporary order for more than one year after the temporary hearing was held, the woman’s attorney violated SCR 20:1.3, which requires a lawyer to act with reasonable diligence and promptness in representing a client.

    Failure to Communicate; Failure to Return Client’s File; Failure to Cooperate with OLR Investigation

    Violations of SCR 20:1.4(a)(4) and(b), 20:1.16(d), and 22.03(2) and (6), enforced under 20:8.4(f)

    An attorney represented a client in a postdivorce matter. The court ordered the attorney to prepare and file a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) dividing the adverse party’s 401(k)account as of the date of the divorce, and did so, but then failed to provide a copy of the QDRO to the client.

    The attorney thereafter failed to explain to the client, who believed that she was entitled to immediate payment, the basis for the minimum-age requirement attached to payment under the QDRO, in violation of SCR 20:1.4(b); and failed to respond to the client’s inquiries regarding the minimum-age requirement, in violation of SCR 20:1.4(a)(4).

    The attorney also failed to return to the client her original documents, in violation of SCR 20:1.16(d); and failed to provide a written response to the client’s grievance, even after the supreme court issued an order to show cause and later suspended the attorney’s law license because of her failure to ever cooperate with the OLR’s investigation, in violation of SCR 22.03(2) and 22.03(6), enforced under the Rules of Professional Conduct for Attorneys by SCR 20:8.4(f).

    The attorney had no prior discipline.

    Failure to Communicate; Lack of Diligence; Failure to Comply with Fee-Reporting Statute in Bankruptcy Matter

    Violation of SCR 20:1.3, 20:1.4(a)(2), (3), and (4), 20:1.15(b)(4), and 20:8.4(f)

    A lawyer agreed to represent a married couple in their Chapter 7 bankruptcy and to attempt to release or “strip” a second mortgage lien from their home by filing an adversary proceeding within the bankruptcy. The lawyer did not discuss with the couple that such relief was not likely to be granted in the jurisdiction where they filed for bankruptcy. The lawyer thereby violated SCR 20:1.4(a)(2), which requires lawyers to discuss with their clients the means by which the objectives of the representation will be pursued.

    The lawyer also failed to report in the documents filed with the bankruptcy court the entire fee the couple paid to him for the bankruptcy and the adversary proceeding. This conduct was contrary to statutes requiring lawyers to report all fees received in contemplation of or in connection with a bankruptcy and thereby violated SCR 20:8.4(f), which provides that it is misconduct for a lawyer to violate a statute regulating the conduct of lawyers.

    The court summarily dismissed the adversary proceeding. Thereafter, the lawyer was not diligent in pursuing further action to resolve the lien, in violation of SCR 20:1.3, and did not respond to the couple’s requests for information, in violation of SCR 20:1.4(a)(3) and (4). Finally, the lawyer deposited the couple’s advanced fees into his business account rather than into a trust account without meeting the requirements of SCR 20:1.15(b)(4m), thereby violating SCR 20:1.15(b)(4), which requires lawyers to hold all advanced fees in trust unless the alternative protections under SCR 20:1.15(b)(4m) are provided.

    The lawyer had no prior discipline.

    Engaging in Law Practice During CLE Suspension

    Violations of SCR 31.10(1), enforced under 20:8.4(f)

    An attorney engaged in misconduct in two matters reported to the OLR, which led to imposition of a single private reprimand covering both matters.

    On June 6, 2011, the attorney became ineligible to practice law in Wisconsin for noncompliance with 2009-10 continuing legal education (CLE) requirements. The attorney was reinstated from that suspension on June 22, 2011.

    On June 15, 2011, while his law license was suspended, the attorney transmitted a letter to opposing counsel in a client’s divorce matter discussing property-equalization payments relating to the attorney’s client. The letter was sent on the attorney’s letterhead. By transmitting the June 15, 2011 letter, when the attorney’s law license was suspended for noncompliance with mandatory CLE requirements, the attorney violated SCR 31.10(1), which is enforced via SCR 20:8.4(f).

    In the second matter, the OLR learned that the petition for reinstatement the attorney filed with the Board of Bar Examiners (BBE) after his CLE suspension identified other incidents of law practice during suspension, including appearances in court for status conferences, a plea hearing, a motion hearing, and an initial appearance. After the afternoon of June 7, 2011, any other scheduled appearances were adjourned or covered by other attorneys. The attorney also provided the OLR with additional information indicating that during the suspension he had a conversation with a potential client.

     In the second matter, the attorney’s actions with and on behalf of clients in June 2011 when his law license was suspended for noncompliance with CLE requirements provided further evidence that the attorney violated SCR 31.10(1), which is enforced via SCR 20:8.4(f).

    The attorney had a prior private reprimand, imposed in 2006, for unrelated conduct.

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