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Bar News - June 18, 2010


NH Supreme Court Orders

Pursuant to its constitutional authority and powers of general superintendence over the New Hampshire Bar Association and its members, the New Hampshire Supreme Court assesses each member of the association in active status as of June 1, 2010, with the exception of fulltime judicial members and pro bono active members, the sum of one hundred ninety five dollars ($195), and each member in inactive status as of June 1, 2010, with the exception of inactive retired, inactive military and inactive honorary, the sum of ten dollars ($10). These assessments are due and payable on or before July 1, 2010, and are for the purpose of funding the operations of the New Hampshire Supreme Court Attorney Discipline System, including the Professional Conduct Committee. If the Board of Governors of the New Hampshire Bar Association grants a member’s request for abatement of bar dues, it may grant a waiver of this fee.

The New Hampshire Bar Association shall collect the assessment for the account of the Professional Conduct Committee and shall report to the court on or before September 1, 2010, the names of those members responsible for the assessment who have not fully paid.

May 7, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox, Clerk of Court

Supreme Court of New Hampshire


Pursuant to its constitutional authority and powers of general superintendence over the New Hampshire Bar Association and its members, and pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 55, the New Hampshire Supreme Court suspends the assessment to fund the Public Protection Fund (PPF) for the fund year beginning on June 1, 2010, and ending May 31, 2011.

Pursuant to its constitutional authority and powers of general superintendence over the New Hampshire Bar Association and its members, and pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 58, the court assesses each duespaying

member of the association as of June 1, 2010, as follows, for the purpose of funding the Lawyers Assistance Program (LAP).

Membership category LAP Assessment

Active over three years $15

Judicial $15

Active three years and under $15

Inactive $15

Inactive retired $ 5

Pro bono active $ 0

The members of the association exempted from the Public Protection Fund assessment by order dated July 22, 1998, are exempted from the assessment for the LAP. The LAP assessment is due and payable on or before July 1, 2010. If the Board of Governors of the New Hampshire Bar Association grants a member’s request for abatement of bar dues, it may grant a waiver of the assessment.

The New Hampshire Bar Association shall collect the assessment for the account of the Lawyers Assistance Program and shall report to the court on or before September 1, 2010, the names of those members responsible for the assessment who have not fully paid.

May 7, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox, Clerk of Court

Supreme Court of New Hampshire


ADM-2010-0011
In the Matter of David L. Dubrow, Esq.

On March 22, 2010, this court issued an order requiring Attorney Dubrow to file his certificate of compliance with the minimum legal education requirements for the reporting year ending June 30, 2009, and to pay the late fees assessed, or be suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire.

Attorney Dubrow has neither responded to the show cause order, nor brought himself into compliance with Supreme Court Rule 53.7(A)(3).

Attorney Dubrow is hereby suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire.

Attorney Dubrow is ordered to notify his clients in writing that he has been suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire and to notify the court by Friday, June 11, 2010, that he has completed this task. On or before Tuesday, June 1, 2010, the Attorney Discipline Office shall advise the court if it believes that an attorney should be appointed to make an inventory of Attorney Dubrow’s files and to take action to protect the interests of Attorney Dubrow’s clients. The court hereby requires that Attorney Dubrow’s trust accounts and other financial records be audited at his expense.

Broderick, C.J., and Dalianis, Duggan, Hicks, and Conboy, JJ., concurred.

ISSUED: May 12, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox, Clerk


Pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 37, the Supreme Court appoints Attorney Mary Tenn, of Manchester, to serve on the Hearings Committee of the Attorney Discipline System. The term of Attorney Tenn shall commence immediately and shall expire on December 31, 2012.

The court also appoints Patricia Sherman, of Newbury, to serve as a nonlawyer member of the Hearings Committee of the Attorney Discipline System. The term of Ms. Sherman shall commence immediately and shall expire on December 31, 2011.

May 18, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox, Clerk of Court

Supreme Court of New Hampshire


LD-2010-0006,
In the Matter of Lanea A. Witkus

The court on May 13, 2010, issued the following order:

Attorney Lanea Witkus was suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire for a period of six months, with four months stayed, commencing March 1, 2010. Attorney Witkus has filed a motion for reinstatement and an affidavit stating that she has fully complied with the terms of the suspension order and requesting that she be reinstated to the practice of law. In accordance with the provisions of Rule 37(14)(f), Attorney Witkus’ motion for reinstatement is granted. Attorney Lanea Witkus is reinstated to the practice of law in New Hampshire, effective immediately.

Broderick, C.J., and Dalianis, Duggan, Hicks and Conboy, JJ., concurred.

Eileen Fox, Clerk


Pursuant to Part II, Article 73-a of the New Hampshire Constitution and Supreme Court Rule 51(A)(7), the Supreme Court of New Hampshire adopts the following amendments to court rules.

Supreme Court Rules –
Bar Examination

1. Adopt a technical amendment to Supreme Court Rule 42(6), regarding applications to take the New Hampshire bar examination, as set forth in Appendix A.

Supreme Court Rules – Minimum Continuing Legal Education (Late Fees and Suspension Process for Noncompliance)

1. Amend Supreme Court Rule 53.7(A), regarding sanctions for failure to comply with continuing legal education requirements, on a temporary basis, as set forth in Appendix B.

Effective Date

These rules shall take effect July 1, 2010. The amendments in Appendix B shall be referred to the Advisory Committee on Rules for its recommendation as to whether they should be adopted on a permanent basis.

Date: May 11, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox , Clerk of Court

Supreme Court of New Hampshire

APPENDIX A

Adopt the following technical amendment to Supreme Court Rule 42(6), so that said section, as amended, shall state as follows (additions are in [bold and brackets]; deletions are in strike-thru format):

(6) A person who fails twice in an examination for admission to the bar will not be permitted to take another examination until the court, upon special consideration of the case, shall make an order to that effect. Upon filing a motion requesting such permission and representing that a recognized bar review course will be taken prior to the next examination, a person who has failed the examination twice or three times will be granted permission to take it a third or fourth time, as the case may be. Such permission shall be conditional on the applicant’s filing with the court, prior to sitting for the examination, an affidavit that the course has been successfully completed. A person who has failed [the examination for admission to the bar] four times will not be permitted to retake the examination. Provided, however, that any person who has failed four times prior to October 11, 2002, may be [is] permitted to retake the examination one time after said date[.] upon compliance with the requirements set forth above for a person who has failed twice. A person who has failed four times prior to said date and failed once after said date will not be permitted to retake the examination.

APPENDIX B

Amend Supreme Court Rule 53.7(A), on a temporary basis, as follows (additions are in [bold and brackets]; deletions are in strike-thru format):

53.7.—Sanctions And Appeal

A. Delinquency

1. Notice of Delinquency - Following the annual reporting date, the NHMCLE Board shall send a notice of delinquency to each lawyer not in compliance with this rule. To the extent administratively possible, the notice shall be sent within thirty (30) [fifteen (15)] days of the annual reporting date. Within sixty (60) [thirty (30)] days of the date appearing on the notice of delinquency, the lawyer shall take steps necessary to comply with this rule for the prior reporting period. [comply with this rule for the prior reporting period.]

2. Final Demand for Compliance - After this sixty (60) [thirty (30)] day period, if the lawyer fails to report CLE credits sufficient to permit retroactive compliance with this rule, or fails to certify that the lawyer is exempt from the requirements, the NHMCLE Board shall notify the lawyer by mail of his or her continued noncompliance and make final demand for compliance. [has not complied with the rule to permit retroactive compliance, or fails to certify that the lawyer is exempt from the requirements, and/or has not paid any outstanding delinquency fee, the NHMCLE Board shall so notify the lawyer by certified mail that it will seek an order of the New Hampshire Supreme Court suspending the lawyer from the practice of law.]

3. Sanctions - If the lawyer does not meet compliance requirements within thirty (30) days of a final demand for compliance, beginning on that date, the lawyer shall be assessed a delinquency fee of one hundred dollars ($100) for each month or fraction thereof in which noncompliance continues. However, the delinquency fee for each reporting period shall not exceed three hundred dollars ($300). If the lawyer has not complied with the rule within three (3) months of the final demand, and/or has not paid any outstanding delinquency fee, the NHMCLE Board shall seek an order of the New Hampshire Supreme Court suspending the lawyer from the practice of law. [Failure of a lawyer to meet the compliance requirements of this rule will result in the imposition of delinquency fees as set forth in the regulations adopted by the NHMCLE Board.]


LD-2009-0010
In the Matter of Nancy S. Tierney

Having considered the parties’ briefs and oral arguments and the record submitted on appeal, the court concludes that a formal written opinion is not necessary for the disposition of this appeal. On October 29, 2009, the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC) filed a petition for one-year suspension of Attorney Nancy S. Tierney, hereinafter referred to as the respondent. The petition requested that the respondent be suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire for one year, and that the suspension be stayed for two years. On December 2, 2009, the respondent filed an answer to the petition, stating that she accepted the PCC’s findings, rulings and recommendations and that she assented to the requested sanction. On January 20, 2010, the court issued an order asking the parties to brief the issue of the appropriate sanction to be imposed in this case. The court received the PCC’s brief on February 18, 2010, and the respondent’s brief on March 23, 2010. The court heard oral argument in this case on May 13, 2010.

In the petition, the PCC alleged that the respondent violated the following Rules of Professional Conduct:

(1) Rule 1.1(a)-(c) by representing her client in federal court despite her lack of competence in federal court matters;

(2) Rule 1.3(a), (b) by failing to file timely objections and pleadings in compliance with federal rules and failing to pursue other remedies in civil proceedings to her client’s detriment;

(3) Rule 1.4(a)-(c) by failing to forward important documents to her client or otherwise communicate with him in writing, despite his request; and

(4) Rule 8.4(a) by violating the Rules of Professional Conduct.

The court accepts the PCC’s findings and rulings as to the rules violations.

The PCC determined that the goals of protecting the public, including the respondent’s current clients, preventing similar conduct in the future, and preserving the integrity of the profession would be best served by suspending the respondent for one year from the practice of law in New Hampshire, and staying this suspension for two years subject to conditions that include provisions for mentoring. Having considered the petition, the respondent’s answer, the parties’ briefs and oral arguments, and the record submitted on appeal, the court accepts the PCC’s recommendation as to the sanction that should be imposed in this case.

THEREFORE, the court orders that Attorney Nancy S. Tierney be suspended from the practice of law in New Hampshire for a period of one year; imposition of this suspension is stayed for a period of two years subject to Attorney Tierney’s compliance with the conditions set forth in the PCC’s recommendation and the following additional conditions:

(1) Attorney Tierney shall provide her clients with copies of the mentoring order and obtain their consent to Attorney Tierney’s consultation with and provision of information to the mentor, as may be required to comply with the terms of mentoring.

(2) Attorney Tierney shall consult with the mentor before appearing as counsel in any litigation to determine whether she has sufficient experience in the applicable area of law to provide competent representation as well as the necessary, current legal resource materials, including applicable procedural rules and whether she should consult with more experienced counsel to ensure that she understands the applicable law.

(3) In all litigated cases in which Attorney Tierney has entered an appearance, she shall consult with the mentor regarding substantive and procedural issues associated with any dispositive motions or memoranda filed by another party or to be filed by Attorney Tierney, as well as any related court orders. The mentor shall periodically review and comment on such pleadings, including those prepared in draft by Attorney Tierney before filing, and Attorney Tierney shall cooperate with the mentor in this regard.

The court agrees with the process by which the two-year stay of Attorney Tierney’s one-year suspension may be lifted as set forth in paragraph eight of the PCC’s September 9, 2009 order. If the PCC imposes any portion of Attorney Tierney’s one-year suspension, it shall notify the court. At the conclusion of the two-year stay, either party may request that the stay of the remaining suspension be made permanent.

Attorney Tierney is hereby assessed all expenses incurred by the Professional Conduct Committee in the investigation and prosecution of this matter. See Rule 37(19).

Broderick, C.J., and Dalianis, Duggan, Hicks and Conboy, JJ., concurred.

DATE: May 24, 2010

ATTEST: Eileen Fox, Clerk

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