About the Author

Sally D. Adkins

Sally D. Adkins

Judge, Court of Appeals of Maryland


Issue: What sanction should the Court impose upon an attorney who  failed to perform legal services for clients after accepting a retainer, ignored clients’ requests for updates, abandoned representation of clients without communication, and refused to respond to Bar Counsel during the course of its investigation?

Holding: Taken together, the lawyer's actions in failing to pursue the client's interests, failing to communicate with the client, ignoring a client's requests for status updates, abandoning representation without communication, and failing to return unearned fees warranted disbarment.

Alleged Violations: Maryland Lawyers' Rules of Professional Conduct ("MLRPC") 1.1 (Competence); 1.2 (Scope of Representation and Allocation of Authority Between Client and Lawyer); 1.3 (Diligence); 1.4 (Communication); 1.5 (Fees); 1.15 (Safekeeping Property); 1.16 (Declining or Terminating Representation); 8.1 (Bar Admission and Disciplinary Matters); and 8.4 (Misconduct);  Maryland Business Occupations and Professions Code § 10306.

Citation: 445 Md. 490, 128 A.3d 54