Tuesday, April 1, 2014

On irony and ethics

There are some things you just can't make up -- and this is one of them. Robert Bennett is, or, more accurately, was, an attorney in Houston who defended attorneys brought before the State Bar's disciplinary committee as part of his practice.

But Mr. Bennett's own problems before the Bar proved too much to overcome and he was disbarred by the State Bar on March 21, 2014 following a trial on allegations that Mr. Bennett failed to follow the state's disciplinary rules regarding termination of representation and taking actions that unreasonably increased the cost of litigation.

Despite the State Bar only asking for a two-year suspension, Bexar County District Judge Carmen Kelsey signed an order disbarring Mr. Bennett. The matter is being appealed. Should the disbarment be upheld, Mr. Bennett would have to wait five years to gain re-admittance to the bar.

The dispute arose when a Bennett client, Gary Land, requested arbitration to resolve a fee dispute. Mr. Land went to the State Bar after Mr. Bennett declined to pay the judgment entered against him. The matter was eventually appealed to the state Supreme Court who declined to hear the case.

Now Mr. Bennett has found a new line of work. His new firm, Bob Bennett Licensing Services for Professionals, represents professionals who find themselves afoul of their state licensing agency.
Mr. Bennett is the owner of Bob Bennett Licensing Services for Professionals. The counselors in this licensing services are especially proficient in cases involving, matters before the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel, the Texas Medical Board, the State Board of Law Examiners, and other Boards involving professionals and DTPA violations, ethics defense, and white-collar criminal defense.
The Bob Bennett Licensing Services for Professionals concentrates on representing attorneys, doctors, judges, and other professionals who have professional discipline issues responsibility and find themselves the subject of federal and state investigations. This includes representation of both law students and medical students who have run afoul of the Texas Board of Law Examiners or Texas Medical Board. Medical students and doctors who have issues with the United States Medical Licensing Examination, the National Board of Medical Examiners, or the Federation of State Medical Boards have retained the Firm. Whether the matter involves a grievance hearing before the Texas Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel or a privilege hearing before a hospital committee, the Firm is known for aggressive representation and success. See client reviews and peer recommendations: www.avvo.com. 
Specialties: Representing law students and lawyers before the Board of law Examiners or cases with the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel or before the Texas Board of Medicine
Interesting that there's no mention in his blurb on Avvo that mentions the disbarment - but why bring up such an issue when there's money to be made?

A quick glance to the law firm's website shows that Mr. Bennett is still advertising his law practice despite the disbarment. Mr. Bennett is also still listed as an attorney with the firm - despite no longer having a law license. Might that lead to a new problem down the road?

In the interest of full disclosure, Mr. Bennett did represent former death row inmate (and exoneee) Anthony Graves. Mr. Graves walked out of prison after it was disclosed that the prosecutor in his case, Charles Sebesta, withheld evidence during the trial that led to Mr. Graves' conviction.

1 comment:

nowthatsamatt said...

I got pretty worried that you were referring to Mark Bennett and then thought this was an April Fool's prank.

This day is the worst.