Rule 11-564. Finding of guilt or entry of a plea to a crime.

(a) Duty to report any finding of guilt or plea to a crime. After a finding of guilt or entry of a plea of guilty or no contest—including the entry of a plea in abeyance—for any crime, except for misdemeanor traffic offenses or traffic ordinance violations not involving the use of alcohol or drugs:

(1) The Lawyer must notify the OPC in writing of such a finding or plea within 14 days after it is entered and include the following information:

(A) name, bar number, and current address;

(B) the court in which the finding or plea was entered; and

(C) the case number in which the finding or plea was entered.

(2) The court must forward documentation that the Lawyer has been found guilty of or has entered a plea to a crime to the OPC within 28 days after the finding or plea is entered.   

(b) Motion for interim suspension. On being advised that a Lawyer has been found guilty of or has entered a plea of guilty or no contest for a felony or misdemeanor that reflects adversely on the Lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness to practice law, the OPC must determine whether the crime warrants interim suspension. After determining that the crime warrants interim suspension, the OPC must file an Action, and concurrently file a motion for immediate interim suspension. The Respondent may assert any jurisdictional deficiency establishing that the interim suspension may not properly be ordered, such as the crime is not a felony or misdemeanor that reflects adversely on the Respondent’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness to practice law, or that the Respondent is not the individual who was found guilty of or had entered a plea of guilty or no contest. The Respondent is not entitled to an evidentiary hearing but may request an informal hearing, solely to determine whether the finding of guilt or plea was for a felony or misdemeanor that reflects adversely on the Respondent’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness to practice law. If an order for interim suspension is not obtained, the OPC must dismiss the Action and will process the matter as it does any other information coming to the OPC’s attention.

(c) Imposition. The district court will place a Respondent on interim suspension upon proof that the Respondent has been found guilty of or has entered a plea to a felony or misdemeanor that reflects adversely on the Respondent’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness to practice law regardless of any pending appeal.

(d) Dissolving interim suspension. Interim suspension may be dissolved as provided in Rule 11-563.

(e) Documentation as conclusive evidence. Except as provided in paragraph (b), documentation that the Respondent has been found guilty of or has entered a plea to a crime constitutes conclusive evidence that the Respondent committed the crime.  

(f) Automatic reinstatement from interim suspension. If a Respondent suspended solely under paragraph (c) demonstrates that the underlying finding of guilt or plea has been reversed or vacated, the order for interim suspension will be vacated and the Respondent placed on active status. Vacating the interim suspension will not automatically terminate any disciplinary proceeding then pending against the Respondent, the disposition of which will be determined based on the available evidence other than the reversed or vacated finding of guilt or plea.

(g) Notice to clients and other of interim suspension. An interim suspension under this rule constitutes a suspension of the Respondent for the purpose of Rule 11-570.

Effective December 15, 2020