State of Nebraska ex rel. Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska Supreme Court, relator.
Laird T. Moore, respondent.
action. Judgment of suspension.
Heavican, C.J., Wright, Connolly, Miller-Lerman, Cassel,
Stacy, and Kelch, JJ.
case is before the court on the conditional admission filed
by Laird T. Moore, respondent, on May 26, 2016. The court
accepts respondent's conditional admission and orders
that respondent be suspended from the practice of law for a
period of 2 years followed by 2 years' monitored
probation upon reinstatement.
was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Nebraska
on May 3, 2002. At all relevant times, he was engaged in the
private practice of law in Omaha, Nebraska.
December 18, 2015, the Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska
Supreme Court filed formal charges against respondent. The
formal charges consist of two counts against respondent. In
the two counts, it is alleged that by his conduct, respondent
violated his oath of office as an attorney, Neb. Rev. Stat.
§ 7-104 (Reissue 2012), and Neb. Ct. R. of Prof. Cond.
[294 Neb. 284] §§ 3-501.1 (competence); 3-501.3
(diligence); 3-501.4(a) and (b) (communications);
3-501.15(a), (c), and (d) (safekeeping property); 3-508.1(b)
(bar admission and disciplinary matters); and 3-508.4(a) and
respect to count I, the formal charges state that on November
20, 2014, a client filed a grievance against respondent
stating that respondent had failed to adequately represent
her in her divorce case. On November 26, the Counsel for
Discipline mailed a copy of the client's grievance to
respondent at his then-current business address. Respondent
was instructed to submit a written response to the
client's grievance, but he did not.
January 15, 2015, the Counsel for Discipline sent a followup
letter to respondent directing him to submit a written
response to the client's grievance. Respondent did not
respond to the January 15 letter. On February 4, the Counsel
for Discipline sent another followup letter to respondent. On
February 13, respondent called the Counsel for Discipline and
stated that he would submit his response to the client's
grievance on February 17. On February 18, the Counsel for
Discipline received respondent's initial response to the
of respondent's response was mailed to the client, who
submitted her reply on March 13, 2015. In her response, the
client stated that respondent was not prepared for her trial,
he had not contacted witnesses, and he had failed to deliver
her file to her new attorney despite repeated requests. The
client further stated in her response that respondent failed
to provide an accounting of his time to justify the fee she
10, 2015, the Counsel for Discipline sent a letter to
respondent asking for specific information regarding
respondent's representation of the client. In addition,
the Counsel for Discipline requested that respondent provide
evidence that he had deposited the client's $1, 450
advance fee payment into his trust account. The letter was
mailed to respondent's personal residence, and it was
also sent to his current e-mail address. [294 Neb. 285] The
formal charges state that as of December 17, respondent had
not yet responded to the July 10 letter.
formal charges allege that by his actions with respect to
count I, respondent violated his oath of office as an
attorney and professional conduct rules §§ 3-501.1;
3-501.3; 3-501.4(a) and (b); 3-501.15(a), (c), and (d);
3-508.1(b); and 3-508.4(a) and (d).
respect to count II, the formal charges state that on January
17, 2011, a second client and her son signed fee agreements
with respondent to represent their interests arising from a
traffic collision. On March 2, 2015, the second client filed
a grievance against respondent stating that respondent had
neglected her case and had failed to communicate with her.
March 5, 2015, the Counsel for Discipline sent respondent a
copy of the second client's grievance. Respondent was
directed to file a response within 15 working days. The March
5 letter was mailed to respondent by certified mail at his
office address maintained by respondent with the Attorney
Services Division of the Nebraska Supreme Court. The