Study Attorney Grievance Process to Hold Public Hearing in Waterbury
HARTFORD The Commission to Study
the Attorney Grievance Process will conduct a public hearing on Monday, April 17th at 7
p.m. at the Waterbury Superior Court to receive comments regarding the attorney
disciplinary system in Connecticut. The Commission was formed by the State Judicial Branch
to enhance the attorney disciplinary process. It is charged with conducting a
comprehensive review of the attorney disciplinary system and making recommendations to
address how the current system can be improved.
"The regulation of attorneys admitted to practice law in
the State of Connecticut is one of the many important functions of the Judiciary,"
said Supreme Court Justice Francis M. McDonald, Jr., who appointed the Commission members.
"A major part of that responsibility is the attorney disciplinary process by which
claims of attorney misconduct are investigated and resolved."
Currently, the judges of the Connecticut Superior Court
delegate much of the attorney disciplinary review process to the Statewide Grievance
Committee and to the Judicial District Grievance Panels. These groups are comprised of
dedicated volunteersattorneys and non-attorneys alikeand are assisted by
Judicial Branch staff.
"We cannot overemphasize the importance of such a
process," said former Supreme Court Justice Robert I. Berdon, chair of the
Thus far, hearings have been held in Hartford, New Haven and
New London. One will be planned in Bridgeport at a time and date to be announced.
"The Commission has gained invaluable information from
the public at the previous hearings," said Justice Berdon. "We intend to ponder
each matter placed before us and take all criticisms, suggestions and comments very
The last time a similar review was conducted was almost 10
years ago, in March 1990, when then Chief Justice Ellen A. Peters appointed the Judicial
Council on Legal Ethics.
"The Judicial Branch is committed to ensuring that any
system that is developed receives input from members of the public," explained
Justice Berdon. " I encourage individuals who have gone through the Attorney
Grievance Process to attend the public hearing to provide the Commission with suggestions
on how to improve the process. It is through such input and constant re-examination of the
process that the Judiciary can ensure the integrity of the system."
Joining Justice Berdon on the Commission are judges,
attorneys and members of the public, including: the Honorable Richard E. Arnold; the
Honorable Juliett L. Crawford; the Honorable Joseph P. Flynn; the Honorable William J.
Lavery; the Honorable Sheridan L. Moore; the Honorable Lynda B. Munro; the Honorable
Christine S. Vertefeuille; Representatives Robert Farr and Michael P. Lawlor; Senator
Thomas F. Upson; Attorneys Paul V. Carty, Milagros Cruz, Raymond J. Devlin, Jr., Thomas
Flaherty, Roger J. Frechette, William F. Gallagher, Richard Newman, A. Searle Pinney;
Carmen Donnarumma and Frank Morgan.
The Superior Court is located at 400 Grand Street in
Waterbury. The hearing will be held in the Jury Assembly Room on the 4th floor
of the Courthouse. Directions to the Waterbury Superior Courthouse can be found at the
Judicial Branch website (www.jud.ct.gov).