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Attorney lies in court.

Dyersburg, TN |
Filed under: Litigation

What are the consequences for an attorney that lies in court? Judge was made aware of it in open court by opposing counsel and the attorney made the same false statement in two court appearances several months apart. Can the attorney be charged with something in court? If so, what,

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

If the judge believes the attorney is lying and it is proven I have seen judges report the attorney to the state bar association for misconduct hearings.

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Posted

The attorney would not likely be chargeable criminally, unless he/she was under oath at the time, in which case perjury might be appropriate. I agree with my Illinois colleague that disciplinary action is the most likely. Attorneys are usually reluctant to report other attorneys if they are likely to cross paths in the future, but the judge might if he/she is annoyed enough, and the lie is significant enough.

I am not your attorney and any posts/messages or responses to posts/messages can not and do not establish an attorney-client relationship. You should not rely upon free legal advice, and I disclaim any liability for the outcome if you do. Any opinions offered on matters outside New York State are for general informational purposes only.

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7 comments

Asker

Posted

Can I petition court to hold opposing counsel in direct contempt? The false statement is central to their petition against me. I even asked the judge in court to hold op in contempt for the false statement. The judge did not even acknowledge my claim or request.

Terry David Horner

Terry David Horner

Posted

Contempt is usually used to punish a person for ignoring a court's directive or order. Unless the court has called the attorney on the issue, and ordered him/her not to make the statement again, contempt will not lie. Asking for it inappropriately does not help your position in court. Are you pro se? Consider hiring an attorney.

Asker

Posted

How does one appropriately ask a judge and fellow "expert in the law" to hold another "expert in the law" accountable for trampling their own code of ethics?

Terry David Horner

Terry David Horner

Posted

As Mr. Wagman notes, a motion for sanctions is the in-court remedy. But what makes you think either the judge or offending counsel is an "expert"?! And, most importantly, how do you know the statement was a lie? Do you have a legitimate, admissible document that contradicts the statement?

Asker

Posted

As Mr. Wagman notes, a motion for sanctions is the in-court remedy. But what makes you think either the judge or offending counsel is an "expert"?! I say expert only because tn preamble to code of ethics states attorneys are to be experts in the law. And, most importantly, how do you know the statement was a lie? Do you have a legitimate, admissible document that contradicts the statement? Irrefutable bank documents, sworn affidavits from several individuals, emails and text from plaintiff contradicting their own counsels statement in court,pictures, etc all presented to the judge and opposing counsel in court. Judge did not acknowledge only asked items to be marked for identifying purposes but not to be considered at that time. The false statements have been pointed out now at two seperately court dates.

Terry David Horner

Terry David Horner

Posted

What kind of proceeding is this? It sounds like you're getting ahead of yourself, if there has been no ruling yet.

Asker

Posted

Petition for contempt and modification concerning mda and parenting plan. My concern is we go back to court in couple of months and if op's false statement isn't dealt with before final orders, ill be forced to appeal because the false statements are basis of op's argument.

Posted

There are penalties with both the bar association and possible sanctions if an attorney makes frivilous or false assertions in court. An attorney has to make a good faith argument.

The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Illinois. Responses are answers to general legal questions and the receiver of such question should consult a local attorney for specific answers to questions.

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