Licensure & Discipline - Articles

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Posted by: BPR Reports on May 1, 2018

Journal Issue Date: May 2018

Journal Name: May 2018 - Vol. 54, No. 5


Reinstated

The Supreme Court of Tennessee reinstated Hamilton County lawyer Lisa Zarzour Bowman to the practice of law, effective March 5. Bowman was suspended by the Supreme Court on Jan. 22, for one year with a minimum active suspension of 30 days and the remainder served on probation. Bowman filed a petition for reinstatement to the practice of law on Feb. 8, and the board determined she satisfactorily complied with the terms and conditions of her suspension and submitted an order of reinstatement to the court.


Disability Inactive Status Removed

Nashville lawyer Dennis Wayne Gregory has been reinstated to the practice of law by the Tennessee Supreme Court. In February, he sought reinstatement from inactive status, which he had been on for five years.


Disability Inactive

By order of the Tennessee Supreme Court entered on March 9, the law license of Davidson County lawyer Hugh C. Howser was transferred to disability inactive status pursuant to Section 27.3 of Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 9. Howser cannot practice law while on disability inactive status. He may return to the practice of law after reinstatement by the Tennessee Supreme Court upon showing of clear and convincing evidence that the disability has been removed, and he is fit to resume the practice of law.

By order of the Tennessee Supreme Court, the law license of Knox County lawyer Willis B. Jackson Jr. was transferred to disability inactive status on March 8, pursuant to Section 27.3 of Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 9. Jackson is prohibited from practicing law while on disability inactive status. He may return to the practice of law after reinstatement by the Tennessee Supreme Court upon showing of clear and convincing evidence that the disability has been removed.

By order of the Tennessee Supreme Court, the law license of Douglas Barnet Parker was transferred to disability inactive status on March 23, pursuant to Section 27.3 of Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 9. Parker cannot practice law while on disability inactive status. He may return to the practice of law after reinstatement by the Tennessee Supreme Court upon showing of clear and convincing evidence that the disability has been removed and he is fit to resume the practice of law.

The law license of Hamilton County lawyer David Haines Rotroff was transferred to disability inactive status on March 28, pursuant to Section 27.3 of Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 9. Rotroff cannot practice law while on disability inactive status. He may return to the practice of law after reinstatement by the Tennessee Supreme Court upon showing of clear and convincing evidence that the disability has been removed, and he is fit to resume the practice of law.


Disciplinary


Disbarred

On April 3, the Supreme Court of Tennessee disbarred McMinn County lawyer Larry Dean Cantrell from the practice of law for delivering property of an estate by quitclaim deed that should have been conveyed by court deed or court order, for stating in the quit claim deed that the debts of the estate had been paid when they had not, for delaying the delivery of the deed for seven months, and failing to maintain the purchase funds in his trust account while the matter was pending. Cantrell’s conduct violated Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1, competence; 1.3, diligence; 1.15, safekeeping property; and 8.4 (a), (b) (c) and (d), misconduct. Cantrell was previously suspended by the Supreme Court of Tennessee on Nov. 17, 2017, after pleading guilty to theft of property of $60,000 to $250,000.


Suspended

On March 9, the Supreme Court of Tennessee temporarily suspended Davidson County attorney M. Andrew Holland from the practice of law upon finding that he failed to respond to the board regarding a complaint of misconduct. Section 12.3 of Supreme Court Rule 9 provides for the immediate summary suspension of an attorney’s license to practice law in cases of an attorney’s failure to respond to the board regarding a complaint of misconduct.

On March 22, the Supreme Court suspended Davidson County attorney James Daniel Marshall from the practice of law for a period of two years, with 30 days to be served as an active suspension, and the remainder served on probation subject to certain conditions, including the appointment of a practice monitor and continued contact with Tennessee Lawyers Assistance Program. During the representation of three clients, Marshall failed to produce discovery responses, attend case management conferences and motion hearings, timely serve a summons or issue alias summons, and timely communicate with his clients. Marshall’s conduct violated the Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1, competence; 1.3, diligence; 1.4, communication;, 3.2, expediting litigation; and 8.4, misconduct.

The Supreme Court of Tennessee temporarily suspended Shelby County lawyer TeShaun David Moore from the practice of law on March 7 upon finding that Moore misappropriated client funds and poses a threat of substantial harm to the public. Section 12.3 of Supreme Court Rule 9 provides for the immediate summary suspension of an attorney’s license to practice law where an attorney has misappropriated funds or otherwise poses a threat of substantial harm to the public. This suspension remains in effect until dissolution or modification by the Supreme Court.


Censured

Knox County lawyer James H. Price received a public censure from the Tennessee Supreme Court on March 22. Price undertook the representation of two long-time debtor clients in a complex Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding in the Eastern District of Tennessee, during which the Bankruptcy Court found he failed to follow Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure and Local Rules and Administrative Procedures. He also failed to disclose potential conflicts of interest. Price executed a conditional guilty plea acknowledging the Bankruptcy Court’s findings and that his conduct violated the Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1, competence; 1.7, conflict of interest; and 8.4 (a), misconduct.

On April 4, Aundreas W. Smith of Williamson County was publicly censured by the Tennessee Supreme Court. On May 23, 2017, the Board of Professional Responsibility filed a petition for discipline against Smith, which included one complaint of misconduct alleging that she took her fee from medical payments issued by her client’s insurance company and deposited the medical payment checks into her operating account rather than her IOLTA account. She also failed to provide her client with a written settlement statement. The court ordered Smith to pay restitution to one client, complete an additional three hours of continuing legal education with a focus on management of IOLTA accounts and accounting associated with contingency fee cases, and pay costs and expenses to the board. Smith violated the Rules of Professional Conduct 1.5(c), fees; 1.15, safekeeping property; and 8.4 (a), misconduct.


Administrative Suspensions

Notice of attorneys suspended for, and reinstated from, administrative violations — including failure to pay the Board of Professional Responsibility fee, file the IOLTA report, comply with continuing legal education requirements and pay the Tennessee professional privilege tax — is on the TBA website at www.tba.org/directory-listing/administrative-suspension-lists.


Compiled by Katharine Heriges from information provided by the Board of Professional Responsibility of the Tennessee Supreme Court. Licensure and disciplinary notices are included in this publication as a member service. The official record of an attorney’s status is maintained by the board. Current information about a particular attorney may be found on the board’s website at www.tbpr.org.