Articles Tagged with disbarrment

A Massachusetts attorney has been disbarred for engaging in activities which created conflicts of interest and for misusing client funds. The violations included (1) using client funds to purchase annuities from a company where the attorney was an agent and received a commission on the sale, (2) improperly cashing out existing annuities, which resulted in charges to the ward, (3) charging excessive fees to a guardianship estate, and (4) intentionally misusing over $10,000 of estate funds in another guardianship.

In April, 2016, the attorney submitted an affidavit of resignation admitting to violations of the Massachusetts Rules of Professional Conduct between 2007 and 2014. In June, 2016, the Board of Bar Overseers recommended acceptance of the affidavit and disbarment. The Supreme Judicial Court then adopted the recommendation and entered a judgment of disbarment effective immediately.

In Re John A Aliperta

The Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) in Boston, Massachusetts has entered a judgment of disbarment of a Massachusetts attorney, who practiced law in Rhode Island without a license and misused client funds. In the matter of David R. Ardito, a lawyer had a longstanding friendship with a married couple from Rhode Island. In 2005, the wife sustained personal injuries in an auto accident and as the result of a slip and fall at a local store.

Both incidents occurred in Rhode Island, and although he was not licensed to practice law there, he offered to represent the wife, pro bono. In doing so, the attorney misrepresented his qualifications in violation of Mass. R. Prof. C. 1.16(a)(1). The wife agreed to hire the attorney, and he commenced separate actions against the other driver and the store which constituted the unauthorized practice of law contrary to Mass. R. Prof. C. 5.5(a). Two years later, he settled both cases without informing the couple. He received settlement checks and signed them on behalf of the couple without their authority, deposited the funds into his lawyers trust account, and never dispersed them to the couple.

Over the following years, the wife made repeated inquiries about the status of the cases. The lawyer falsely ensured her that the lawsuits were ongoing. Eventually, the woman became suspicious and filed a petition with the Board of Bar Overseers (“BBO”), who instituted disciplinary proceedings.

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