What kinds of things are considered attorney misconduct,fraud etc that an attorney grievance committee

Asked about 1 year ago - New York, NY

will do something about against a lawyer. i put in a complaint and they said i did not state a complaint and need to redo it. i feel this defense attorney has lied intentionally in court and defrauded me by making me believe lies that i discovered and influenced my case.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Jack Richard Lebowitz

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The rules of conduct for NYS attorneys are stated here (22 NYCRR Part 1200), see link below.

    I would speak to an attorney confidentially to get a better handle on why your complaint was rejected by the bar disciplinary committee. Part of the confusion is possibly your use of the word "lies". An attorney can only "lie" about the facts of the case, and those facts would have come from you and he repeated them. ("The defendant didn't do what he was accused of, he had an alibi").

    If the "lies" concerned some interpretation of the law, like saying "if you testify against a co-defendant, they will reduce the charges or sentence" or "the maximum sentence Judge Jones tends to give for possession of a controlled substance is three years", that is a statement of legal opinion or strategy, a matter of professional judgment, not something which can be characterized as a "lie", unless it was a knowing and intentional deceit (the attorney definitely that knew not to be true).

    When an attorney signs certain papers in a lawsuit, he may be certifying that he believes the facts told to him by the client are true and there is a valid legal claim (that is, the lawsuit is not frivolous and simply intended to annoy the other parties).

    Perhaps if you discuss the nature of the lie confidentially with another attorney, you can gain more insight. I would not discuss the matter further on this site, as you will lose any attorney client privilege over the matter and it can be used against you in court as an admission.

    This answer is provided under the Avvo.com “Terms and Conditions of Use” (“ToU”), particularly ¶9 which states... more
  2. Eric Edward Rothstein

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It is hard to answer your question in the abstract. Be more specific about what your complaint is about.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases.... more
  3. Peter Christopher Lomtevas

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It is impossible to answer your question because you don't say anything the lawyer did or did not do. You make a conclusory comment about his lying, but you do not say what you told your lawyer and what he told the court or what kind of case it was.

    I run into these situations many times. A client tells me his kid slapped a dog on Tuesday and I hear that the client slapped his wife in the living room. Verbal discussions stated quickly and then repeated for the court can be twisted around with no lie intended. Just last week I had a client tell me her child had a mark from a visit on Saturday but the reality was that a mark appeared in January. I confused 'Saturday' with 'January'. These are not lies but mistakes and misunderstandings.

    Also, remember lawyers work within a world driven by the law. There are legally significant facts, a slap, versus a legally less significant fact, a Tuesday. If your case was a criminal case, then your lawyer really could not say anything to anyone in order to preserve your right to remain silent. In a civil matter, your lawyer will not reveal information that can be used against you. Your interpretation of your lawyer's behavior may miss this important facet, that he has to zealously protect your interests while advocating to get you what you deserve from litigation.

    So unless you give detailed specifics (without violating your own confidences and waiving privilege), none of us can assist you in figuring out what to do next.

    Good luck.

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