A disciplinary sanction is imposed on a lawyer upon a finding or acknowledgement that the lawyer has engaged in professional misconduct.
Disbarment terminates the individual's status as a lawyer. Where disbarment is not permanent, procedures should be established for a lawyer who has been disbarred to apply for readmission, provided that:
(1) no application should be considered for five years from the effective date of disbarment; and
(2) the petitioner must show by clear and convincing evidence:
(a) successful completion of the bar examination, and
(b) rehabilitation and fitness to practice law.
Suspension is the removal of a lawyer from the practice of law for a specified minimum period of time. The time period prior to application for reinstatement should not be more than three years. When applicable, procedures should be established to allow a suspended lawyer to apply for reinstatement, but a lawyer who has been suspended should not be permitted to return to practice until he has completed a reinstatement process demonstrating rehabilitation and fitness to practice law.
2.3 Interim Suspension
Interim suspension is the temporary suspension of a lawyer from the practice of law pending imposition of final discipline. Interim suspension includes:
(a) suspension upon conviction of a "serious crime" or,
(b) suspension when the lawyer's continuing conduct is or is likely to cause immediate and serious injury to a client or the public.
Reprimand, also known as censure or public censure, is a form of public discipline which declares the conduct of the lawyer improper, but does not limit the lawyer' s right to practice.
Admonition is discipline appropriate for misconduct that is of a nature that protection of the public does not warrant public discipline. Admonition is a form of non-public discipline that does not limit the lawyer's right to practice.
Probation is a sanction that allows a lawyer to practice law under specified conditions. Probation can be imposed alone or in conjunction with a reprimand or an admonition; probation can also be imposed as a condition of readmission or reinstatement.
2.7 Other Sanctions and Remedies
Other sanctions and remedies which may be imposed include:
(b) assessment of costs,
(c) limitation upon practice,
(d) appointment of a receiver,
(e) requirement that the lawyer take the bar examination or professional responsibility examination,
(f) requirement that the lawyer attend continuing education courses,
(g) requirement that the lawyer participate in a lawyer assistance program, and
(h) other requirements that the state's highest court or disciplinary board deems consistent with the purposes of lawyer sanctions.
2.8 Reciprocal Discipline
Reciprocal discipline is the imposition of a disciplinary sanction on a lawyer who has been disciplined in another jurisdiction.
2.9 Readmission and Reinstatement
In jurisdictions where disbarment is not permanent, procedures should be established to allow a disbarred lawyer to apply for readmission. Procedures should be established to allow a suspended lawyer to apply for reinstatement.