A year later, suspension begins for Charleston attorney

By Lawrence Smith | Oct 20, 2011


CHARLESTON – A Charleston attorney will begin his year-long suspension from the practice of law nearly a year after the state Supreme Court first ordered it.

The Court on Nov. 18 ordered the suspension of Doug Smoot's license for a year after it found he withheld portions a physician's narrative in the course of discovery in a black lung case. However, his suspension was put on hold after he first filed a motion for reconsideration – which the Court denied in January - and later appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court in April.

The U.S. Supreme Court rejected Smoot's writ of certiorari on Oct. 3. Three days later, the state Supreme Court enforced its suspension order.

Smoot was represented in his Jackson Kelly colleagues Stephen R. Crislip, A.L. Emch and Ben McFarland.

As a condition of his reinstatement to the Bar following the suspension, the Court ordered Smoot to take an additional nine hours of continuing legal education in the area of ethics, and reimburse the Lawyer Disciplinary Board $6,489.56 for the cost of the disciplinary proceeding. Prior to the Court's decision, Smoot, who was first admitted to the Bar on Sept. 15, 1981, had no prior disciplinary actions or ethics complaints.

West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals case number 34724

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