Trumbull County Attorney Indefinitely Suspended
The Supreme Court of Ohio has indefinitely suspended the law license of Leavittsburg attorney Gary Lee Braun for failing to promptly prepare and file a divorce action on behalf of a client after accepting a fee advance to do so, failing to appear on behalf of the same client in a criminal case after agreeing to represent him, and failing to respond to repeated messages and requests for information from the client regarding the legal matters he had entrusted to Braun.
The court also found that Braun failed to respond to inquiries from the Trumbull County Bar Association regarding the grievance filed against him by his client, and failed to file an answer to the bar association’s formal complaint or otherwise participate in disciplinary proceedings before the Board of Commissioners on Grievances & Discipline.
In a 7-0 per curiam opinion announced today, the court adopted findings by the disciplinary board that Braun violated the professional conduct rules that require an attorney to act with reasonable diligence in representing a client, to reasonably consult with and keep a client informed about the status of a legal matter, to comply as soon as practicable with a client’s reasonable requests for information, and to cooperate with disciplinary investigations.
In imposing an indefinite suspension as the appropriate sanction for this misconduct, the court noted the aggravating factors that Braun was previously suspended for disciplinary infractions, retained his client’s fee advance without performing the promised legal services, and caused harm to the client by forcing him to retain replacement counsel and to litigate his divorce in another county because of Braun’s failure to make a timely filing in Trumbull County.
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2012-0667. Trumbull Cty. Bar Assn. v. Braun, Slip Opinion No. 2012-Ohio-5136.
On Certified Report by the Board of Commissioners on Grievances and Discipline, No. 11-030. Gary Lee Braun, Attorney Registration No. 0021431, is indefinitely suspended from the practice of law in Ohio.
O’Connor, C.J., and Pfeifer, Lundberg Stratton, O’Donnell, Lanzinger, Cupp, and McGee Brown, JJ., concur.
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