CHARLESTON – When the Colorado State Bar kicked out Daniel Post, he should have reported it to West Virginia where he still held a license to practice law.
But he did do that.
When West Virginia officials found out and tried to take away his license, he defiantly challenged their authority.
Now, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has shut the doors of the state's courts to Post. In May, the Justices annulled his license.
They ruled unanimously that when another state disciplines an attorney who holds a West Virginia license, West Virginia rules require an identical sanction.
The West Virginia Bar admitted Post to practice in 1983. Colorado admitted him in 1992.
In 1999, a judge in Colorado suspended disciplinary proceedings against Post, placed him on disability inactive status and ordered an independent medical examination.
In 2000, Post admitted that he violated many rules of professional conduct.
In 2001, a hearing board ordered that Post be disbarred and that he pay restitution of $15,000 to four clients.
Post could have appealed to the Colorado Supreme Court, but he did not.
West Virginia rules gave him 10 days to report the Colorado discipline, but Post did not report it.
The West Virginia Office of Disciplinary Counsel found out and started reciprocal disciplinary proceedings in 2003.
Though Post held a license, his West Virginia Bar membership was inactive.
A discipline committee held a hearing in 2005 and recommended annulment of Post's license.
To keep his license, Post needed an exception from the reciprocal rule.
To win an exception, he had to show that Colorado violated due process, that there was total infirmity of proof, that identical discipline would result in grave injustice, or that the misconduct warranted substantially different discipline.
Post accused Colorado of violating due process, but the West Virginia Justices found that he came up short in his own due process.
Justice Joseph Albright wrote for the Court that Post failed to report the Colorado discipline and failed to file a full copy of the Colorado record with the Court.
Albright wrote that Post raised constitutional issues that West Virginia Justices could not consider because Post failed to raise them in Colorado's Supreme Court.