Suspense is Over: CA Supreme Court Suspends Lenore


 Powered by Max Banner Ads 

.

.

.

As there has been some dispute in the local blogosphere over whether perennial candidate Lenore Albert has been (deservedly) suspended at various points, the Supreme Court of California has now explicitly weighed in: she’s suspended and potentially on her way to disbarment.  Here’s their order:

Lenore is suspended for a minimum of six months — meaning people should help her not practice law during that time — but the suspension will last until she makes restitution in two instances.  She might be able to repay Fin City Foods that $47, but the $23,000 or so to Dr. Nira Schwarts-Woods — this was in the patent law case with forgery accusations that we’ve written about — will be more daunting (as will payment of prosecution costs to the State Bar.)

California Rules of Court Rule 9.20 reads as follows:

Rule 9.20. Duties of disbarred, resigned, or suspended attorneys

(a) Disbarment, suspension, and resignation orders

The Supreme Court may include in an order disbarring or suspending a licensee of the State Bar, or accepting his or her resignation, a direction that the licensee must, within such time limits as the Supreme Court may prescribe:

(1)  Notify all clients being represented in pending matters and any co-counsel of his or her disbarment, suspension, or resignation and his or her consequent disqualification to act as an attorney after the effective date of the disbarment, suspension, or resignation, and, in the absence of co-counsel, also notify the clients to seek legal advice elsewhere, calling attention to any urgency in seeking the substitution of another attorney or attorneys;

(2)  Deliver to all clients being represented in pending matters any papers or other property to which the clients are entitled, or notify the clients and any co-counsel of a suitable time and place where the papers and other property may be obtained, calling attention to any urgency for obtaining the papers or other property;

(3)  Refund any part of fees paid that have not been earned; and

(4)  Notify opposing counsel in pending litigation or, in the absence of counsel, the adverse parties of the disbarment, suspension, or resignation and consequent disqualification to act as an attorney after the effective date of the disbarment, suspension, or resignation, and file a copy of the notice with the court, agency, or tribunal before which the litigation is pending for inclusion in the respective file or files.

(Subd (a) amended effective January 1, 2019; previously amended effective December 1, 1990, and January 1, 2007.)

(b) Notices to clients, co-counsel, opposing counsel, and adverse parties

All notices required by an order of the Supreme Court or the State Bar Court under this rule must be given by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, and must contain an address where communications may be directed to the disbarred, suspended, or resigned licensee.

(Subd (b) amended effective January 1, 2019; previously amended effective December 1, 1990, and January 1, 2007.)

(c) Filing proof of compliance

Within such time as the order may prescribe after the effective date of the licensee’s disbarment, suspension, or resignation, the licensee must file with the Clerk of the State Bar Court an affidavit showing that he or she has fully complied with those provisions of the order entered under this rule. The affidavit must also specify an address where communications may be directed to the disbarred, suspended, or resigned licensee.

(Subd (c) amended effective January 1, 2019; previously amended effective December 1, 1990, and January 1, 2007.)

(d) Sanctions for failure to comply

A disbarred or resigned licensee’s willful failure to comply with the provisions of this rule is a ground for denying his or her application for reinstatement or readmission. A suspended licensee’s willful failure to comply with the provisions of this rule is a cause for disbarment or suspension and for revocation of any pending probation. Additionally, such failure may be punished as a contempt or a crime.

The Court gave Lenore 30 calendar days to perform the acts in section (a) and 40 calendar days to perform those in section (c).  Because Lenore is still, so far as I know, pursuing her appeal of a decision tossing out her case against people including me and Vern, I should be receiving the notification required in Section (a)(4) by mid-August; I’ll update this post with it when it arrives.  (I’ve never seen one of these, so I’m curious about what it will look like.)

I would say that this now ends our coverage of the story of Lenore’s legal troubles, but it may be that a story like that never ever ends.

(Seriously: please don’t get legal advice from her while she’s suspended.  She’s got enough legal trouble to deal with already without adding to it.)


About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose attorney, semi-retired due to disability, residing in northwest Brea. Occasionally runs for office against bad people who would otherwise go unopposed. Got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012; Josh Newman then won the seat in 2016. In 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002; Todd Spitzer then won that seat in 2018. Every time he's run against some rotten incumbent, the *next* person to challenge them wins! He's OK with that. Deposed as Northern Vice Chair of DPOC in April 2014 (in violation of Roberts Rules) when his anti-corruption and pro-consumer work in Anaheim infuriated the Building Trades and Teamsters in spring 2014, who then worked with the lawless and power-mad DPOC Chair to eliminate his internal oversight. Expelled from DPOC in October 2018 (in violation of Roberts Rules) for having endorsed Spitzer over Rackauckas -- which needed to be done. None of his pre-putsch writings ever spoke for the Democratic Party at the local, county, state, national, or galactic level, nor do they now. One of his daughters co-owns a business offering campaign treasurer services to Democratic candidates and the odd independent. He is very proud of her. He doesn't directly profit from her work and it doesn't affect his coverage. (He does not always favor her clients, though she might hesitate to take one that he truly hated.) He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)