STATEWIDE GRIEVANCE COMMITTEE
Roslyn Hunt, Complainant vs. Haiman Long Clein, Respondent
Grievance Complaint #96-0106
Pursuant to Practice Book '27J, the undersigned, duly-appointed reviewing committee of the Statewide Grievance Committee, conducted a hearing at the Superior Court, 95 Washington Street, Hartford, Connecticut on March 6, 1997. The hearing addressed the record of the complaint filed on August 2, 1996, and the probable cause determination filed by the Middlesex Judicial District Grievance Panel on November 26, 1996, finding that there existed probable cause that the Respondent violated Rules 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.15, 1.16, and 8.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
Notice of the hearing was mailed to the Complainant and to the Respondent. At the hearing on March 6, 1997, the Complainant and the Respondent did not appear.
This reviewing committee finds the following facts by clear and convincing evidence:
The Respondent commenced representation of the Complainant with regard to a civil matter on December 1, 1995. On December 5, 1995, the Respondent informed the Complainant of a settlement offer. The Complainant agreed to a $16,000.00 settlement and on December 8, 1995 the Complainant signed the settlement check. At the time the Complainant signed the settlement check, the Respondent informed the Complainant that the check would clear in three to five working days and she would receive $8,200.00. The Complainant never received her portion of the settlement proceeds.
This reviewing committee finds the following violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct by clear and convincing evidence:
The Respondent failed to promptly deliver to the Complainant her portion of the settlement proceeds in violation of Rules 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.15 and 8.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct. The Respondent failed to keep the Complainant reasonably informed regarding his handling of the settlement proceeds in violation of Rule 1.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
The reviewing committee did not find clear and convincing evidence in the record of a violation of Rules 1.5 and 1.16 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
Since we conclude that the Respondent violated the Rules of Professional Conduct and in consideration of the seriousness of the misconduct, we recommend that the Statewide Grievance Committee file a presentment against the Respondent with the Superior Court for the imposition of whatever discipline the court deems appropriate.
Attorney David A. Curry
Attorney Robert J. Kor
Ms. Mary Ellen Smith