The attorney disciplinary process ordinarily begins with a grievance filed against the attorney by a client, other attorney, judge or the Office of Attorney Ethics. If it is determined that the facts alleged in the grievance, if proven, would constitute a violation of the Rules of Professional conduct, the grievance is docketed. Once a grievance has been docketed, an investigation ensues. An outcome for an attorney who has had a grievance filed will range from dismissal of the grievance to disbarment.
If after an investigation, it is determined that there is proof of unethical conduct, a formal complaint is filed and served upon the attorney/respondent. The respondent has 21 days to file an answer. The matter will then be scheduled for a hearing before a Special Master or a panel from one of the 18 ethics committees.
This office represents attorneys at all stages of the disciplinary process. In general, we recommend consultation with an experienced ethics attorney early in the grievance process. Please call us at 856-547-7888 or email the head of our Ethics Department at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need help.