Friday, February 26, 2016

Help for those swindled by lawyers

Posted By on Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 12:28 PM

click to enlarge Gregory Chernushin: Left clients holding the bag. - FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
  • Gregory Chernushin: Left clients holding the bag.
This week's Independent has a cover story about Gregory Chernushin, who's up to his eyeballs in problems after clients allege he took thousands of dollars due them in settlements for traffic crash and worker's compensation injuries.

Many of those clients fear they'll never be made whole, because Chernushin now has declared bankruptcy. However, there's a fairly low profile agency that does offer some hope.

It's called the Attorneys' Fund for Client Protection, and it's overseen by the Colorado Supreme Court.

At present, the fund has roughly $4 million available to clients who were victims of dishonesty by their lawyers, says Jamie Sudler, chief deputy regulation counsel in the Office of Attorney Regulation.

From the most recent annual report, for 2014:
For a claim to be eligible for reimbursement, the loss must be caused by the dishonest
conduct of the attorney. Additionally, the loss must arise out of and by reason of an
attorney-client relationship or a court-appointed fiduciary relationship between the
attorney and the claimant. 

In 2014, the board approved $904,870 in reimbursements. Here's a short Q&A about the fund.

Read the 2014 report here:

Says Sudler, "We're really, really interested in getting the word out and we try as hard as we can to let people know about it."

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