For more, see Split Panel OKs Lawyer's $11 Million Fine
(may require paid subscription; if no subscription, GO HERE
, then click the appropriate link for the story).
For the court ruling, see Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. Gordon
, No. 13-56484 (9th Cir. April 14, 2016).
See, generally, Frederick Miller, "If You Can't Trust Your Lawyer .... ?"
, 138 Univ. of Pennsylvania Law Rev. 785 (1990) for more on the apparent, long-standing tolerance for deceit by many in the legal profession:
- This tolerance to deception is encouraged by the profession's institutional civility. Seldom is a fig called a fig, or a shyster a shyster. No, our euphemisms are wonderfully polite: "frivolous conduct," or a "lack of candor;" or "law-office failure;" or, heaven forbid, a "peculation," a "defalcation," or a "negative balance" in a law firms's trust account.
There is also widespread reluctance on the part of lawyers --- again, some lawyers --- to discuss publicly, much less acknowledge, that they have colleagues who engage in deceit and unprofessional conduct.
This reluctance is magnified when the brand of deceit involves the theft of client money and property, notwithstanding that most lawyers would agree that stealing from clients is the ultimate ethical transgression. [...] The fact is, however, that theft of client property is not an insignificant or isolated problem within the legal profession. Indeed, it is a hounding phenomenon nationwide, and probably the principal reason why most lawyers nationwide are disbarred from the practice of law.
The California State Bar's Client Security Fund
is a public service of the California legal profession. The State Bar sponsored the creation of this fund to help protect consumers of legal services by alleviating losses resulting from the dishonest conduct of attorneys. The amount the fund may reimburse for theft committed by a California lawyer depends on when the loss occurred. A maximum of $50,000 is reimbursable if the loss occurred before January 1, 2009. A maximum of $100,000 is reimbursable if the loss occurred on or after January 1, 2009.
For similar "attorney ripoff reimbursement funds
" that sometimes help cover the financial mess created by the dishonest conduct of lawyers licensed in other states and Canada, see:
Maps available courtesy of The National Client Protection Organization, Inc.