Tuesday, March 5, 2013

6 month law license suspension for lawyer by California State Bar for DUI and Driving on suspended license 9 days after DUI court ordered the attorney not to drive

A DUI can have a devastating effect on the career of anyone, including a licensed California lawyer.   Sometimes the California State Bar takes action; sometimes they do not.  The more criminal convictions, the higher the chance for the California attorney getting suspended by the Review Department, say San Diego DUI lawyers.

A fifty-three year old California attorney from Woodland Hills got hit with a 6 month suspension of his California law license, beginning 1/1/13, DUI lawyers discovered reading this month's California Lawyer (p. 56).

The California lawyer was convicted in 2008 of Vehicle Code Section 23152(b) - driving with a BAC of .08% or higher (arising out of a California DUI arrest).  In 2009, the same California attorney was convicted of Vehicle Code Section 14601.2(a) - driving on a suspended license arising out the DUI conviction.

In hammering this California lawyer for these DUI-related convictions, the Department took into consideration his prior record of discipline.  Prior California actions do not help.  The prior record may or may not have been a factor when the two above California convictions initially were referred to the State Bar Alternative Discipline Program and later consolidated.  There was ultimately a stipulation for a misdemeanor conviction warranting discipline but it is suspected the attorney did not feel the State would suspend or suspend for so long.

The Department noted the California attorney "showed indifference" by knowingly drive with a suspended driver's license 9 days after the DUI court ordered him NOT to drive (without a valid license).

In mitigation, the California attorney cooperated with the State Bar investigation & proceedings.