Disciplinary Reporter Case Digest

Attorney ID 45980
Attorney Name Harris , David Clement
DBP Docket No. 205 DB 2009
Supreme Court Docket No. 1604 DD No. 3
County Philadelphia
Disciplinary Counsel Harriet R. Brumberg
Counsel for Respondent Michael W. Kiernan
Decision Date 2010-06-02
Effective Date 2010-07-01
Case Digest Respondent was the Executor for the Estate of an elderly, childless widow who was in a nursing home. Respondent mishandled the administration of the Estate and failed to act with reasonable diligence in administering the Estate. Respondent also paid himself an illegal and excessive fee of $37,702, or 40% of the gross Estate. As part of the negotiated Discipline on Consent, Respondent agreed to voluntarily resign as the Executor, cooperate with the successor administrator and the Attorney General as parens patriae for charitable interests, and make full restitution to the Estate.
Rule Violation(s) RPC 1.3; RPC 1.5(a); RPC 1.15(a); 1.15(b); RPC 1.15(c); RPC 1.15(e); RPC 7.1; RPC 7.5(a); RPC 8.4(b); RPC 8.4(c); RPC 8.4(d); and Pa.R.D.E. 203(b)(3) via Pa.R.D.E. 219(d)(1)(iii).
Discipline Imposed Suspension for 3 years (on consent)
Points of Law A three-year suspension is within the range of discipline for attorneys who mismanage an estate and mishandle entrusted funds. Respondentís resignation from being the Executor of the Estate, agreement to cooperate with the successor administrator and Attorney Generalís Office, and agreement to pay restitution to the estate are mitigating factors.
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