Effective July 2016, new rules for conducting attorney disciplinary proceedings will go into effect in New York State. Until now, the Appellate Division in each of New York’s four judicial departments had its own disciplinary procedures, differing in various degrees from those in the other departments. When the new rules are enacted, a uniform body of rules will go into effect throughout the state.
Attorneys who are the subject of disciplinary proceedings may ultimately find themselves publicly censured, sanctioned, suspended from the practice of law for a period of time, or completely disbarred, and all attorneys should have some familiarity with how the process works in advance of any formal complaints being registered. Attorneys should also be aware of the disciplinary consequences of actions seemingly unconnected to the practice of law in New York or to the practice of law at all. Therefore the program will draw attention to reciprocal discipline and collateral estoppel as well as to the disciplinary consequences of criminal convictions.
I. Identify the procedural steps of the new uniform New York State attorney disciplinary process
II. Recognize best practices for dealing with complaints and formal charges
III. Explore ways to avoid complaints in the first place
IV. Understand the requirements for being reinstated
Donald M. Zolin has been an attorney in private practice in New York City since 1977, having earned the degree of juris doctor from the State University of New York at Buffalo and the degree of master of laws in taxation from Georgetown University Law Center. Besides being admitted to the bar of New York, he is admitted to the bar of California, to the bars of two United States District Courts, that for the Southern District of New York and that for the Eastern District, and to the bar of the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Zolin serves as a Special Master for the Supreme Court of the State of New York in New York County and as a referee in disciplinary proceedings conducted at the Departmental Disciplinary Committee of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York in the First Judicial Department. He has served as an officer and as a director of the New York County Lawyers Association and is the treasurer of the New York County Lawyers Association-McInerney Chapter of the American Inns of Court. He also serves as the chair of the Special Masters Committee of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association and belongs to the American Association for Justice, Academy of the Trial Lawyers of the State of New York. Mr. Zolin was also the chair of the Committee on Federal Courts of the New York County Lawyers Association and co-author of its Report on Magistrates, published at 136 FRD 193 (1991).
Joseph Hester is an attorney in private practice in New York City, having retired from state service in 2010. For the previous ten years he was on the staff of the Chief Counsel of the Departmental Disciplinary Committee of the Appellate Division of the New York State Supreme Court in the First Judicial Department, where he investigated and prosecuted matters involving violations of the rules governing attorney conduct. Prior to that he served as a Special Assistant Attorney General and an Assistant Attorney General, investigating and prosecuting white collar crimes, including police corruption, violation of tax law, the unlawful practice of law, and violation of drug laws by medical professionals. Previously, he had been an Assistant District Attorney in New York City and, immediately upon graduation from New York University Law School in 1977, he had served as appellate counsel in the Criminal Appeals Bureau of the New York City Legal Aid Society.
Very good lecturers with style & good substantive discussions
A subject matter of great importance.
A fascinating subject, explained well
Entertaining, kept me interested and awake.
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