Embezzlement of clients’ trust funds results in 15-year suspension for BC lawyer
Former British Columbia Lawyer Who Embezzled Over $ 145,000 In Trust Funds, Double Billed Clients And Advertised Her Services While Suspended Will Not Practice Law Anywhere in Canada for the next 15 years.
Amanda Jane Rose has admitted to several cases of malpractice, including transferring trust funds from clients to a personal account, using trust funds to cover her operating expenses and deception by investigators, according to a recent venture with the Law Society of BC
Law Society spokesman Jason Kuzminski told CBC News Rose’s actions are on the more serious end of the misconduct spectrum.
“It is effectively the same as delisting,” he said of the sanction. “By achieving this result, we have protected the public interest.”
If Rose decides she wants to practice again, she will have to start the entire bar certification process all over again, Kuzminski explained.
Rose could not be reached for comment.
Rose practiced in three small New Westminster firms from 2011 and faced at least three administrative suspensions during that time for issues with filing trust reports and obtaining required professional development credits. , said the bar.
The pledge sets out a series of findings about Rose’s misconduct that were uncovered from a 2017 compliance audit that turned into a forensic investigation into her accounting dating back three years.
The investigation revealed that she had embezzled trust funds on “numerous occasions,” according to a press release from the bar, in amounts of up to $ 67,718.
This larger example of the hijacking involved a trust account that Rose did not disclose to the bar. She disbursed the money in a variety of ways, including covering overdrafts in her general account, transferring the money to a personal account and GST account with the Canada Revenue Agency, and sending money to the mother of her ex-spouse.
In another example cited by the bar, Rose made 17 separate withdrawals from a pooled trust account for amounts totaling $ 48,697.
Some of this money was used to cover bills clients had already paid, thus double billing them for his services, while other parts were transferred to his general or personal account, and part was transferred to his general or personal account. been used to pay its employees.
The pledge also includes details of an additional $ 28,941 in misappropriated trust funds linked to three clients.
In 2017, while the investigation was ongoing, Rose signed an agreement with the law society prohibiting the use or opening of trust accounts without the approval of a supervisor. Despite this agreement, she opened an account without the knowledge of the supervisor and began to use it, according to the commitment.
In 2019, after Rose agreed not to practice law, the bar identified three websites where she was still running as a lawyer.
The undertaking says she also made false or misleading statements to the bar about her trust accounts on several occasions between 2016 and 2019.