RPA News Blog - Victorian Legal Services Board + Commissionerpage 2

RPA News

RPA News is a blog published by the Victorian Legal Services Commissioner. It is used to inform the lawyers and the public about the following:

  • changes to the regulatory regime, including legislation and regulations
  • disciplinary decisions handed down by VCAT or the courts
  • special events and public announcements
  • new resources available on this website, and
  • any other information we believe is relevant to lawyers and the public.

Please note: blog entries discussing disciplinary action are published by the Commissioner in line with the Commissioner’s long-standing objective to educate the legal profession. By publicising disciplinary outcomes, the Commissioner intends for lawyers to compare their conduct and business practices with those highlighted by VCAT and the courts. This will in turn assist lawyers to comply with the requirements of the Legal Profession Uniform Law and the expectations of consumers and the wider legal profession.

Experienced litigator reprimanded for making baseless allegations March 2, 2017

A senior associate of a Frankston law firm has been found guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct after making baseless allegations in a family law matter.

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal heard that Ms Karen Low had been instructed to send a letter to her client’s estranged husband, who was self-represented in the proceedings.

In the letter Ms Low made a series of statements about the behaviour of (more…)

Solicitor banned after ‘flagrant disregard’ of obligations to client February 23, 2017

A solicitor has been banned from legal practice for two years after his law practice repeatedly failed to obtain instructions from its clients before issuing legal proceedings on their behalf.

Mr Nicholas Logan pleaded guilty to seven charges of professional misconduct after one of his legal firms, Express Legal, commenced acting without the client’s instructions, two weeks after promising (more…)

Strike-off plan over lawyer’s fake accounts February 17, 2017

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal has recommended that a Dandenong sole practitioner be struck-off after finding him guilty of billing clients with fake accounts.

Mr Robert Hession, of Hardys Lawyers, was found to have created a series of fictitious statements itemising costs and disbursements to justify (more…)

Justice reinvestment video February 16, 2017

Youthlaw, Victoria’s state-wide free community legal centre for young people, has produced a video about their Justice Reinvestment project. Titled Justice Reinvestment – What is it? the video helps raise awareness of the benefits of justice reinvestment for (more…)

Regulator sues lawyer who interfered with Board-appointed Manager January 6, 2017

A former Northcote solicitor who obstructed a Manager appointed to his law practice has lost a civil penalty action brought against him by the Victorian Legal Services Board.

The solicitor* was found by the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court to have obstructed the Manager by failing or refusing to provide information required by law.

The Court heard that the Board appointed a Manager to the solicitor’s practice in October 2015 over concerns about (more…)

Strike-off for lawyer with long disciplinary history January 5, 2017

A former Caulfield North solicitor, who had had multiple practising certificates cancelled across his career, has been removed from the roll of legal practitioners.

The Supreme Court of Victoria ordered that Mr Jan Horak be removed from the roll after the Victorian Civil and Administrative Authority had earlier cancelled his practising certificate for a third time.

In 2014 VCAT found Mr Horak guilty of seven charges of professional misconduct for (more…)

Solicitor receives heavy fine for unlawful withdrawal of caveats November 25, 2016

A Horsham solicitor who unlawfully executed withdrawals of caveat against a client’s property has been found guilty of professional misconduct.

Mr Denis J O’Brien, of the law practice O’Brien Lawyers, had acted for the vendor in a complex property sale involving multiple purchasers. The property was covered by a number of caveats, with the caveators being separately represented.

The caveators and the property vendor had previously agreed that (more…)

Solicitor fails client, misleads Commissioner November 4, 2016

A northern suburbs solicitor has been found guilty of two charges of professional misconduct after he failed to inform his client of a settlement offer before its deadline.

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal heard Mr Barry Waters, of Waters & Co Lawyers, had taken over a family law litigation matter from one of his employees who had gone on maternity leave. During Mr Waters’ handling of the matter, the opposing side made a (more…)

Experienced practitioners wanted for Legal Practice Mentors list October 19, 2016

The Victorian Legal Services Board & Commissioner is seeking to list experienced Legal Practice Mentors.

The Board and Commissioner seek an indication from experienced practitioners potentially available to be appointed to the paid role of Mentor to assist another legal practitioner. Willing Legal Practice Mentors will be listed for selection by lawyers who have (more…)