CHARLESTON - In the midst of a half-dozen ethics complaints, Joseph P. Albright Jr. is in jeopardy of having his license suspended for failing to take mandated continuing legal education.
Among the requirements for an attorney to remain in good standing with the state Bar, he or she must take 24 hours of approved continuing legal education. Of those 24 hours, three had to be taken between July 1, 2006, and June 30, 2008, in the area of legal ethics, office management, substance abuse and/or elimination of bias in the legal profession.
Proof they met the requirements had to be submitted to the Bar by July 31.
On Dec. 17, the Bar's Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Commission filed a petition with the state Supreme Court to have 103 attorneys suspended who failed to provide proof. The Bar's petition came after it sent a letter dated Aug. 26 to all those attorneys reminding them the deadline had passed.
Since then, the names of 46 attorneys have been removed for the Bar's petition after providing proof they met the requirements and paid a late fee. Credits filed between Aug. 1 and Sept. 30 required a $50 late fee with a $100 late fee assessed on credits processed after Oct. 1.
In addition to Albright, the son of the recently deceased Justice Joseph P. Albright Sr., another notable name on the Bar's petition is retired Kanawha Circuit Judge A. Andrew MacQueen III. Since 2001, MacQueen has been in private practice after deciding in 1999 that 22 years as a judge was enough.
The Bar's petition also includes two attorneys, Joan A. Mooney and William H. Duty, who've either been suspended or disbarred by previous order of the Court.
On Feb. 27, the Court found Mooney, of Morgantown, in contempt for failing to abide the terms of an admonishment the Court issued her in May. The Office of Disciplinary Counsel asked that Mooney license be suspended for failing to abide by the terms of the admonishment which included taking additional continuing education, nominating a supervising attorney for her practice during its one-year of supervision and paying the cost of the disciplinary proceeding.
On Nov. 28, the Court annulled Duty's license. In annulling his license, the Court accepted the findings of the Lawyer Disciplinary Board's finding that Duty, of Williamson, among other things, withheld $2,500 from a settlement awarded to one client for legal expenses, and also depositing $25,000 awarded to another client into his own checking account rather than a trust account.
The Court is scheduled to consider the Bar's petition on April 8. Once the Court grants the petition, all attorneys are prohibited from practicing law until they not only prove they've met the continuing education requirements, but also pay both the $100 late fee, and a $100 reinstatement fee.
Below are the names of the 57 attorneys whose names are still on the Bar's petition as of press time:
* Stephen Dolly - Lewisburg
* Gordon C. Lane - Charleston
* Charles S. Dunn - Charleston
* Robert W. Lawson III - Charleston
* Janice A. Powell - Walkersville
* A. Andrew MacQueen III - Charleston
* Richard W. Hollandsworth - Wheeling
* Joan A. Mooney - Morgantown
* Douglas B. Hunt- Loris, S.C.
* Robert M. Nunley - Montgomery
* Paul R. Hutchinson - Beckley
* Martin R. Smith Jr. - Charleston
* Zachary Z. Kinney - Forrest Heights, Md.
* Anthony J. Sparacino Jr. - Beckley
* Joanna Bowles - Charleston
* Claude S. Smith III - Charleston
* William H. Duty - Williamson
* Gregory J. Campbell - Charleston
* David A. Riggi - Fairmont
* Thomas E. Buck - Wheeling
* Roy C. Howell - Washington, D.C.
* Amy L. Austin - Richmond, Va.
* Joseph P. Albright Jr. - Parkersburg
* Robert A. Wilson Jr. - Atlanta, Ga.
* Mark D. Sheppard - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Patrick M. Connelly - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* William B. Collins - Buffalo, N.Y.
* John P. Sullivan - Charleston
* Craig L. Vandergrift - Pittsburg, Pa.
* David B. DeMoss - Fairmont
* Monica LaPolt - Lavaca, Ark.
* David E. Potters - Charleston
* Terrence M. O'Brien - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Robert Anthony Loch - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Mark T. Wade - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Patrick A. Bennett - Colliers
* David J. Mincer - Charleston
* Kenneth J. Ford - Martinsburg
* Joseph E. Spaulding - Chapmanville
* Kevin M. Fitzpatrick - Fairfax, Va.
* Robert R. Waters - Huntington
* Timothy L. Eves - Huntington
* Keith W. Hart - Moundsville
* Todd J. Clark - Columbus, Ohio
* Brenton M. Morehead - Parkersburg
* J. Edward Agee - Temple Hills, Pa.
* Dennie S. Morgan Jr. - Oceana
* Matthew R. Rawlings - Portsmouth, Ohio
* Scott P. Mason - Charleston
* Joseph T. Harvey - Princeton
* Candace L. Ogle - Morgantown
* Peter M. Gannott - Louisville, Ky.
* Michael R. Pfeiffer - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Christopher A. Cafardi - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Steven E. Klein - Pittsburgh, Pa.
* Michael J. Dempster - Pittsburg, Pa.
* Jody C. Jones - Princeton
West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals, Case No. 34624