Disciplinary Reporter Case Digest

Attorney ID 33004
Attorney Name Price, Ruth Ann
DBP Docket No. 113 DB 2006
Supreme Court Docket No. 1179 D.D. No. 3
County Out of State
Disciplinary Counsel Richard Hernandez
Counsel for Respondent None
Decision Date 2006-10-10
Effective Date 2006-11-09
Case Digest Respondent engaged in the following misconduct: she presented to her clients a document containing a provision that limited Respondent’s liability to her clients for malpractice and that sought to settle a claim or potential claim for malpractice and failed to advise her clients, in writing, to seek independent legal counsel before executing that document and to afford her clients a reasonable opportunity to seek the advise of independent counsel; she failed to hold separate a $5,000 fee Respondent took from her clients’ settlement proceeds after Respondent was advised that her clients disputed Respondent’s claim that she was entitled to a fee; and she provided legal services in three client matters following her transfer to inactive status for failing to satisfy her continuing legal education (“CLE”) requirements. Respondent’s unauthorized practice of law was limited both in scope and duration. In mitigation of discipline, Respondent had no record of discipline, cooperated with the Office of Disciplinary Counsel (“ODC”) and admitted her misconduct, exhibited remorse for her misconduct, failed to timely comply with her CLE requirements because of a lack of funds to pay for attendance at CLE courses, secured other employment and expressed an intention to no longer maintain a private law practice, satisfied her CLE course requirements, and claimed that she did not receive notice of her transfer to inactive status from the Office of the Secretary. Upon receiving written notification from ODC of the allegations of misconduct, Respondent ceased her unauthorized practice of law and withdrew her appearance in the one civil case in which she was still listed as counsel of record.
Rule Violation(s) RPC 1.8(h)(2), RPC 1.15(c), RPC 1.16(a)(1), RPC 5.5(a), RPC 8.4(c), and Pa.R.D.E. 203(b)(3) via Pa.R.D.E. 217(b), Pa.R.D.E. 217(c)(1), Pa.R.D.E. 217(c)(2), Pa.R.D.E. 217(d), Pa.R.D.E. 217(e), Pa.R.D.E. 217(j)(4)(iii), Pa.R.D.E. 217(j)(4)(iv), Pa.R.D.E. 21
Discipline Imposed Suspension for six months
Points of Law
Report/Opinion Download