Monday, December 21, 2015
Attorney Bernard A. Weintraub Resigns From Practicing Law
Matter of Weintraub
2014 NY Slip Op 06929
Decided on October 14, 2014
Appellate Division, First Department
Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to
Judiciary Law § 431.
This opinion is uncorrected and subject to revision before publication
in the Official Reports.
Decided on October 14, 2014 SUPREME COURT, APPELLATE DIVISION First
Rolando T. Acosta, Justice Presiding,
Rosalyn H. Richter
Paul G. Feinman
Judith J. Gische, Justices.
[*1]In the Matter of Bernard A. Weintraub (admitted as Bernard Adam
Weintraub), an attorney and counselor-at-law: Departmental Disciplinary
Committee for the First Judicial Department, Petitioner, Bernard A.
Disciplinary proceedings instituted by the Departmental Disciplinary Committee for the
First Judicial Department. Respondent, Bernard A. Weintraub, was admitted to the Bar of
the State of New York at a Term of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court for the
First Judicial Department on May 2, 1994.
Jorge Dopico, Chief Counsel, Departmental
Disciplinary Committee, New York
(Kevin M. Doyle, of counsel), for petitioner.
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP
(Hal R. Lieberman, of counsel), for respondent.
Respondent Bernard A. Weintraub was admitted to the practice of law in the State of
New York by the First Judicial Department on May 2, 1994, under the name Bernard
Adam Weintraub. At all times relevant herein, respondent maintained a registered
business address within the First Department.
The Departmental Disciplinary Committee moves, pursuant to the Rules of the Appellate Division, First Department (22 NYCRR) 603.11, for an order accepting respondent's resignation from the practice of law and striking his name from the roll of attorneys.
Respondent's affidavit of resignation, sworn to on July 3, 2014, complies with section
603.11 in that he states, inter alia: (1) his resignation is submitted freely, voluntarily and
without coercion or duress; and (2) that he is fully aware of the implications of
submitting his resignation (see 22 NYCRR 603.11[a]).
Respondent is also aware that he has been the subject of an investigation by the
Disciplinary Committee into allegations he misappropriated client funds 22 NYCRR
603.11[a]. Specifically, it was alleged that respondent: (1) jointly represented two
clients at the closing of the sale of their home; (2) held a portion of the sale proceeds in
his escrow account, the disbursement of which was delayed because his clients were
involved in divorce proceedings; (3) during the period of time in which the funds were
held in escrow and without his clients consent, he borrowed' $600,000 "to meet certain
obligations in the face of the economic downturn and [his] consequent inability to borrow
the money from regular institutional sources"; and (4) he provided accountings to counsel for one of his clients which did not reflect his misappropriation of funds from the escrow account. Respondent advised that "he fully described" his misappropriation to his client's counsel subsequent to providing the inaccurate accounting, and promised to restore the funds to his escrow account. When counsel requested disbursement of the proceeds, respondent paid over the funds in full, after certain proper payments and distributions, along with interest for the entire escrow period.
Respondent further acknowledges he could not defend himself on the merits if
disciplinary charges were brought against him (922 NYCRR 603.11[a]; Matter of
Riley, 115 AD3d 112 [1st Dept 2014]).
Accordingly, the Committee's motion should be granted to the extent of accepting
respondent's resignation from the practice of law and striking his name from the roll of
attorneys and counselors-at-law in the State of New York, effective nunc pro tunc to July 3, 2014.
Order filed. [October 14, 2014]
Acosta, J.P., Richter, Manzanet-Daniels, Feinman, and Gische, JJ.Respondent's name stricken from the roll of attorneys and counselors-at-law in the State of New York, nunc pro tunc to July 3, 2014. Opinion Per Curiam. All con