Keith T. Murphy, a Clarkston lawyer, has received a second one-year suspension, the State of Michigan Attorney Discipline Board (ADB) reported Tuesday. The suspension is effective retroactive to Jan. 2, 2013, to run consecutive to a prior one-year suspension, which went into effect on Jan. 2, 2012.
In the current matter, Murphy entered a plea of no contest to allegations that he held himself out as an attorney while suspended from the practice of law in Michigan. Murphy and the Grievance Administrator filed a stipulation for a consent order of discipline, which the Attorney Grievance Commission approved and ADB Tri-County Hearing Panel #66 accepted. In accordance with the stipulation of the parties, the panel ordered Murphy’s suspension from the practice of law in Michigan for one year, retroactive to Jan. 2, 2013, and directed him to pay costs of $750.00.
In the prior matter, Murphy entered a plea of no contest to allegations that he failed to provide competent representation to clients; neglected legal matters entrusted to him; failed to seek lawful objectives of clients; and failed to act with diligence and promptness in representing clients. He further pleaded no contest to allegations that he failed to keep clients reasonably informed about the status of their matters and comply promptly with reasonable requests for information; and failed to explain matters to clients to the extent reasonably necessary to permit them to make informed decisions regarding the representation. In addition, he pleaded no contest to allegations that he failed promptly to notify clients of receipt of funds in which they had an interest; failed to promptly pay or deliver funds that clients were entitled to receive; failed to hold client funds separate from his own property; and failed to refund any unearned portion of an advance fee. This matter also resulted in a stipulation for consent order of discipline. In accordance with that stipulation, ADB Tri-County Hearing Panel #52 ordered Murphy’s suspension from the practice of law in Michigan for one year, effective Jan. 2, 2012, and directed him to pay restitution of $17,700.00 and costs of $2,886.23.
ADB records show that Murphy also received a reprimand in 1999.