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State ex rel. Counsel for Discipline of Nebraska Supreme Court v. Fraizer

Supreme Court of Nebraska

August 11, 2017

State of Nebraska ex rel. Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska Supreme Court, relator.
v.
Theodore D. Fraizer, respondent.

         Original action. Judgment of public reprimand.

          Heavican, C.J., Wright, Miller-Lerman, Cassel, Stacy. Kelch, and Funke, JJ.

          Per Curiam.

         INTRODUCTION

         This case is before the court on the conditional admission filed by Theodore D. Fraizer, respondent, on May 25, 2017. The court accepts respondent's conditional admission and enters an order of public reprimand.

         FACTS

         Respondent was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Nebraska on September 12, 1979. At all relevant times, he was engaged in the practice of law in Lincoln, Nebraska.

         On April 25, 2017, the Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska Supreme Court filed formal charges against respondent. The formal charges consist of one count against respondent arising from his appointment as successor trustee of a trust created from the assets of the estate of Martin Buschkamp. The formal charges state that on May 3, 2006, Martin Buschkamp died. Respondent filed an estate [297 Neb. 497] proceeding in the county court for Lancaster County. Nebraska, on May 12. The Buschkamp estate was closed in May 2009, and the remaining assets were transferred to the Martin Buschkamp Trust ("Buschkamp Trust"). In August 2013, respondent accepted an appointment as successor trustee of the Buschkamp Trust.

         At some point, a beneficiary of the Buschkamp Trust filed a grievance against respondent with the Council for Discipline alleging that respondent failed to timely conclude all matters related to the Buschkamp Trust and failed to make a timely distribution of its remaining assets. In his response to the grievance, respondent acknowledged that he had not been diligent in finalizing the Buschkamp Trust matters, and he stated, "[The beneficiary] is correct that I have let the remaining aspects of the matter linger too long. . . ." He stated that he would be responsible for any interest or penalties.

         Respondent ultimately completed the matters related to the Buschkamp estate and the Buschkamp Trust. All funds were distributed to the beneficiaries.

         The formal charges allege that by his actions, respondent violated his oath of office as an attorney, Neb. Rev. Stat. § 7-104 (Reissue 2012), and Neb. Ct. R. of Prof. Cond. §§ 3-501.3 (diligence) and 3-508.4 (misconduct).

         On May 25, 2017, respondent filed a conditional admission pursuant to Neb. Ct. R. § 3-313(B) of the disciplinary rules, in which he conditionally admitted that he violated his oath of office as an attorney and professional conduct rules §§ 3-501.3 and 3-508.4(a). In the conditional admission, respondent knowingly does not challenge or contest the truth of the matters conditionally asserted and waived all proceedings against him in exchange for a public reprimand.

         The proposed conditional admission included a declaration by the Counsel for Discipline, stating that respondent's proposed discipline is appropriate and consistent with [297 Neb. 498] sanctions ...


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