The Boston personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Neil Burns studied all 57 Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers public admonitions from 2008-2010, looking for trends. The more severe penalties for Massachusetts lawyers – suspension and disbarment – can only be imposed after review by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. They are reserved for the most serious violations. We will review Massachusetts disbarment and suspension in a subsequent article. The most severe punishment that the BBO can mete out is the admonition. As we’ll see, lawyers can rack up an admonition for a frighteningly wide range of behaviors – even sometimes when acting in good faith.
Number of Admonitions by What Massachusetts Lawyers Did Wrong
17 Poor client communications
13 File-sitting/blown deadlines
11 IOLTA/Billing issues
10 Failure to investigate
8 Conflict of interest
3 Fraud/lying to client
2 Disclose client confidences
2 Practicing law while on admin. suspension
57 Total admonitions
Please see our website’s Legal Malpractice News section to read the full report.