Skip First Level Navigation | Skip All Navigation
|Home | Contact Us | Jobs|
The Grievance Commission is established by the Bar Rules to resolve complaints against lawyers for violations of the Code of Professional Responsibility. This Commission consists of five geographically distributed three-member panels (plus normally another 10 at-large members) all being comprised of volunteer lawyer and lay members.
When a complaint is filed against a lawyer, Bar Counsel must first decide whether it alleges conduct which appears to violate the Code of Professional Responsibility. If a complaint is deemed to not allege such misconduct, Bar Counsel must dismiss it, and will so inform the complainant by letter with reasons provided for that dismissal, subject to appeal to a lay member of the Board or the Grievance Commission. A complaint which does allege a violation of the Code is then investigated by Bar Counsel – which includes requesting a written response from the complained of attorney – and then later reviewed by a panel of the Grievance Commission. That panel determines whether the complaint should be dismissed or alternatively, whether sufficient grounds exist for a public disciplinary hearing to occur. If it does so find, it then directs Bar Counsel to file a formal public disciplinary petition, which is then publicly heard by a different panel of the Grievance Commission.
If a disciplinary hearing panel finds from the evidence presented that a lawyer did violate the Code, the panel may impose discipline by issuing a written public reprimand. Alternatively, should the hearing panel find the lawyer’s misconduct involved aggravating factors such as intentional injury or harm to the lawyer’s client, the panel will usually direct Bar Counsel to institute further disciplinary proceedings with the Court to seek the suspension or disbarment of the lawyer’s right to practice law in Maine.
Grievance Commission Members
|Copyright © 2009 All rights reserved.|