Lawyer Disbarred For "Borrowing" $155,000 Escrow Money Over Two Years

Court: Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, New York

Case: In the Matter of Stephen G. KENNEDY (admitted as Stephen George Kennedy), a suspended attorney: Departmental Disciplinary Committee for the First Judicial Department, Petitioner, Stephen G. Kennedy, Respondent.

Date: Aug. 7, 2012

From: New York attorney Gary E. Rosenberg (personal injury and accident attorney and lawyer; serving Brooklyn and Queens; Queens accident lawyer)

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RELATED POSTS:

ATTORNEY LOSES LAW LICENSE (DISBARRED) FOR STEALING CLIENT ESCROW MONEY; MENTAL PROBLEMS NO EXCUSE

ATTORNEY TOOK CLIENTS' MONEY; HAS NO DEFENSE SO RESIGNS LAW LICENSE

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Facts: This attorney was practicing law since 1987, and should have known better: mess with escrow money, and you will be punished. Period.

This lawyer was holding money in escrow as part of a real estate deal. There was some apparent disagreement over who was to receive the money, so the lawyer held on to it.

In June of 2011 the Court suspended his law license because he admitted taking the money and not properly accounting for it.

At first he admitted taking the money but claimed he was waiting for more money to come in from other sources to replenish the money (this is a no-no).

Then he testified to the disciplinary authorities that since it was unclear who was entitled to the money, he "borrowed" it.

Held: This lawyer took $155,000 over two years. No way is he getting away with this. His license is taken away and he is disbarred.

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