Highlights from the Attorney Grievance Commission’s 2016 to 2017 Annual Report

Each year, the Maryland Attorney Grievance Commission issues an annual report on its activities.  Here are some of the highlights from the July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2017 annual report:

  • The number of licensed attorneys in Maryland increased slightly from 39,814 to 39,890.  This year, the Office of Bar Counsel received 1,917 complaints.  [This translates to 5% of Maryland attorneys receiving a complaint].
  • Bar Counsel docketed 272 matters for further investigation, a substantial decrease from FY 2016 when 357 matters were docketed.
  • The number of sanctioned attorneys rose from 78 to 93. The number of sanctioned attorneys is higher than the ten year average for all sanctions: approximately 84 per year.
  • Disbarments, numbering 33, were consistent with the average of 34.6 per year for the past ten years. Suspensions, however, numbering 34, were significantly higher than the ten year average of 20. The total number of reprimands, 26, was very close to the ten-year average, 29.
  • Of the 272 docketed cases, the most common primary rule violations were for Competence (22), Communications (21), Diligence (21), Safekeeping of property (30), Misconduct – dishonesty, fraud, deceit, misrepresentation (25), and Misconduct – prejudicial to administration of justice (25).



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