Thursday, March 24, 2016

Update: Disbarred attorney reinstated

When last we left Houston attorney Robert Bennett he had been disbarred after a trial on alleged ethics violations. The State Bar alleged that Mr. Bennett violated two ethics rules. What made the matter a bit odd is that the State Bar never recommended that Mr. Bennett be disbarred - that sanction came from Judge Carmen Kelsey of San Antonio.

Today the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston overturned Mr. Bennett's disbarment finding that the evidence was insufficient to support the allegation that he refused to return an advanced payment of an unearned fee to a client. The Court did, however, uphold the finding that he violated the rule against an attorney taking a position during litigation that unnecessarily increases the cost of litigation or unreasonably delays resolution of a matter.

As a result, Mr. Bennett has been reinstated to the bar.

1 comment:

bob.bennett88 said...

Not sure this will make much difference to your readers, but the trial judge in my case, Carmen Kelsey was retired by the good voters of San Antonio. Not sure if she will try to be a visiting judge but if she does, counsel should read what the San Antonio Express News wrote about her. She also has some reviews on various judicial web sites. If you check my state bar site, there is no sanction and none on As an aside, the Sunset Advisory Commission received many suggestions including mine, on how the grievance system can be improved. Beyond that no sure being aggressive in defending your client is a grievable offense. Many ethics experts and other attorneys have commented that the appellate court had to stretch to keep from embarrassing the State Bar of Texas Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel. Thanks for publishing that the disbarment was reversed.