The verification of information about a lawyer’s disciplinary offense is one of the four stages of disciplinary proceedings, which results in the drawing up of a certificate with conclusions and suggestions as to the availability of grounds for disciplinary proceedings.
As reported to “Law & Business” by the press service of the Higher Qualification and Disciplinary Bar Commission (HQDBC), the requirements to the organization of verification of information are indicated in Article 38 of the Law of Ukraine “On Advocacy” and in the regulations on the Qualification and Disciplinary Bar Commission of the region. The issue of compliance to these requirements by the regional QDBCs was once again considered during the HQDBC meeting on May 18-19, in Lviv.
Thus, considering the appeal of the lawyer X against the decision of the disciplinary chamber of the QDBC of Vinnitsa region regarding the disciplinary case, the members of the HQDBC did not find the instructions of the Head of the DC QDBC concerning the verification of information contained in the claim of the complainant and annexes thereto, neither in the provided materials nor in the explanations of the complainant`s lawyer. Similarly, there is no order for the collection of the defender`s explanations, whose actions became the subject of the claim. Moreover, during the inspection, which was still carried out, the individuals were not interviewed and the evidence was not requested, notwithstanding a separate petition of the complainant for that.
The members of the High Commission also found incompliance with the regulatory requirements in the decision that became the outcome of the disciplinary chamber. Under these circumstances, the HQDBC had no other choice then to annul the decisions of their colleagues, return the appeal data and to compel them to arrange the verification in a proper way.
We should recall that in order to streamline the practice of considering such issues, a general rule has been developed in which a number of recommendations are offered to the local disciplinary authorities.
You may read the article “More is not always better” from “Law & Business” to get more information on the verification of information about a lawyer’s disciplinary offense, which was considered at the last meeting of the HQDBC.