A complete travesty with such a lenient discipline of attorney Perlman. His record speaks for itself and demanded DISPARMENT. Even in Pennsylvania he was disciplined for 18-MONTHS.
New Jersey Suspends Philadelphia Attorney Jeffrey L Perlman for 1-Year: Quality Of Mercy
I continue to shudder as per usual at the DRB's sanction analysis.
Based on the foregoing, typically, a six-month suspension is imposed when an attorney has mishandled six to eight client matters over a shorter period of time -- up to five years - even when other infractions, such as misrepresentation, are involved. A one-year suspension is imposed in cases involving more numerous client matters. Often, however, those matters many other offenses, a pattern of misrepresentations, a history of discipline, and longer periods of offensive behavior -- up to thirteen years.
Editor's query: six months for messing up client 6-8 matters and lying about it?
In the instant matter, respondent mishandled ten client matters; failed to promptly pay third parties in an additional five client matters; failed to disburse a balance of client funds in one matter; commingled personal funds with client funds in his trust account in one matter; and made significant misrepresentations in two matters, including to the court, over a period of about three years.
In aggravation, respondent caused significant harm to his clients, economically and otherwise. In mitigation, respondent submitted, and the ODC accepted, documents supporting respondent’s mental health struggles, which were triggered by his mother’s death in 2013. This date coincides generally with the time period the misconduct began; hence, the ODC noted that respondent was able to draw a connection between his mental state and his misconduct.
He had no prior discipline in 30 years of practice and must prove fitness for reinstatement.
This may be a fair result but the idea that multiple neglects are treated so gently might be a cause of concern to consumers of New Jersey legal services.
Update: On June 1, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court suspended the attorney for 18 months for misconduct in several Pennsylvania matters.
That sanction was imposed to be served consecutively to an earlier-imposed 18-month suspension.
Source: Professional Legal Blog