|Oregon State Bar Bulletin APRIL 2011|
Note: More than 14,000 persons are eligible to practice law in Oregon. Some of them share the same name or similar names. All discipline reports should be read carefully for names, addresses and bar numbers.
DAN VAN THIEL
On Dec. 29, 2010, the disciplinary board approved a stipulation reprimanding Baker City lawyer Dan Van Thiel for violating RPC 2.4(a)(1) (acting as a mediator), RPC 2.4(a)(2) (failing to obtain consent to be a mediator) and RPC 4.3 (giving legal advice to an unrepresented person.)
Van Thiel undertook to mediate the dissolution of a marriage between husband and wife. In doing so, he failed to clearly inform them of and obtain their consent to his role as mediator. Thereafter, Van Thiel undertook to represent husband in the dissolution of marriage proceeding. He then gave legal advice to wife, other than the advice to seek counsel, when he knew or reasonably should have known that wife’s interests were or had a reasonable possibility of being in conflict with husband’s interests.
J. STEFAN GONZALEZ
On Nov.28, 2010, a trial panel issued an opinion suspending Salem lawyer J. Stefan Gonzalez from the practice of law for 60 days, effective Jan. 28, 2011, for violating RPC 3.4(c) (knowingly disobeying an obligation under the rules of a tribunal) and RPC 8.4(a)(4) (engaging in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice.)
In 2002, a trial court signed a judgment in the dissolution of Gonzalez’s marriage. The judgment required Gonzalez to pay certain financial obligations. Between April 2007 and June 2009, Gonzalez knowingly failed to pay those obligations.
In a supplemental judgment of modification in 2007, Gonzalez was required to make monthly child support payments to his former wife. Between September 2007 and August 2009, Gonzalez knowingly failed to make the child support payments.
In a subsequent proceeding, the court found Gonzalez in contempt of court for willfully failing to comply with the 2002 judgment and the 2007 supplemental judgment. The court also found Gonzalez in contempt of court for willfully failing to comply with a June 2009 court order compelling him to produce discovery.
ARTHUR P. SLININGER
Effective Jan. 27, 2011, the disciplinary board approved a stipulation for discipline publicly reprimanding Canby lawyer Arthur P. Slininger, for violations of RPC 1.3 (neglect of a legal matter) and RPC 1.4(a) (failure to promptly reply to reasonable requests for information).
Slininger represented a client in a criminal matter. Pursuant to a plea agreement negotiated by Slininger, the client admitted guilt and agreed to serve a term of imprisonment. Soon after he was imprisoned, the client discovered that the judgment in his case erroneously stated that he was ineligible for any form of reduction in sentence and that, as a result, prison authorities intended to deny him statutory good time credit. The client wrote, and Slininger received, a letter describing the error, the client’s inability to reach Slininger by telephone and the need for corrective action. In the event Slininger would not take action, the client asked Slininger to inform him of that fact and forward the case file so that he could take further action himself. Slininger negligently failed to take action to correct the judgment or respond to the client. After a period of months passed without any response from Slininger, the client complained to the bar. Slininger then took action and the judgment was corrected, but the client had by that time served nearly the full term of his sentence.
Slininger’s lack of any prior disciplinary history and other mitigating factors were noted in reaching the appropriate sanction.
JOSEPH J. HANNA, JR.
Form B resignation
Effective Feb. 3, 2011, the Oregon Supreme Court accepted the Form B resignation of Portland lawyer Joseph J. Hanna, Jr. At the time of resignation, the bar was pursuing a disciplinary proceeding in which Hanna was alleged to have violated DR 1-102(A)(3) and RPC 8.4(a)(3) (conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation), DR 5-101(A)(1) (self-interest conflict), DR 5-105(E) and RPC 1.7 (current client conflict of interest), and DR 5-108(A) and RPC 1.8(f) (failure to avoid influence by others), resulting from legal representation he provided to investors in and promoters of a tax shelter investment program.
Hanna was admitted to practice in 1963. His resignation recited that client files and records would be transferred to his partner, Oregon lawyer Timothy R. Strader.
The following have applied for admission under the reciprocity, house counsel or law teacher rules. The Board of Bar Examiners requests that members examine this list and bring to the board’s attention in a signed letter any information that might influence the board in considering the moral character of any applicant for admission. Send correspondence to Admissions Director, Oregon State Board of Bar Examiners, P.O. Box 231935, Tigard, OR 97281.
Reciprocity: Kianna Brooke Bradley, Megan O’Keefe Case, Michael Patrick Chiacchio, Kevin James Craig, Sean Michael Downs, John Edward Grant III, Erin Henderson Jaurigue, Tiffany Joy Jensen, Karen Jane Kruse, Mark Alan Larrañaga, Elizabeth Ann McCormack, Shane Douglas McFetridge, Arthur Dustin Miller, Markus Berndt Gustaf Oberg, Justin Eric Pingel, Thomas John Shorall, Jr, William Blake Simms, Jason Dean Smith and Aaron Geoffrey Thomson.
Notice of Reinstatement Application
The following attorneys have filed an application for reinstatement as an active member of the Oregon State Bar pursuant to Rule of Procedure (BR) 8.1:
Fred M. Granum of Portland, #832145. Fred Granum transferred to inactive status in 2006 to focus on business pursuits. Previously, he had practiced law in Portland at Dunn Carney, Garvey Schubert Barer and Bullivant Houser Bailey. Granum was recently appointed as special adviser to the attorney general on business matters and is therefore seeking reinstatement at this time.
The Rules of Procedure require the Board of Governors to conduct an investigation of BR 8.1 reinstatement applications to determine whether applicants possess the good moral character and general fitness to practice law and whether the resumption of the practice of law in this state by the applicants will not be detrimental to the administration of justice or the public interest. Any person with information relevant to these applications is asked to contact promptly the OSB Regulatory Services Division, P.O. Box 231935, Tigard, OR 97281; phone: (503) 620-0222, or toll-free in Oregon, (800) 452-8260), ext. 343.