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Louisiana Record

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Permanent disbarment recommended for Covington attorney following 2017 harassment guilty plea

Discipline

By Karen Kidd | Feb 21, 2020

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NEW ORLEANS – Disbarred Covington attorney Raymond Charles Burkart III faces possible permanent disbarment following a Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) Feb. 10 recommendation to the state Supreme Court.

The three counts of complaints against Burkart included allegations that he harassed his ex-girlfriend in 2015.

In its 12-page recommendation, the LADB said Burkart should be permanently disbarred.

The LADB also recommended Burkart be ordered to return unearned fees to one client, provide an accounting and disburse settlement funds to another client and pay all costs and expenses in the disciplinary proceedings against him.

The LADB's recommendation follows a hearing committee's legal conclusions and its own recommendation filed about a year ago, which also called for Burkart's permanent disbarment.

Burkart was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on April 13, 2006, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar Association's website.

Burkart's disbarment was effective in November 2018 following two sets of consolidated charges in four client matters and mismanagement of his trust account..

He previously was named ineligible to practice law in Louisiana in June 2016 for failing to comply with mandatory continuing legal education requirements; for not paying state bar dues and a disciplinary assessment; and for not filing a trust account disclosure statement.

In this latest disciplinary proceeding against Burkart, he is alleged to have violated professional conduct rules, including those regarding diligence, communication, failure to return an unearned fee and committing a criminal act.

One count against Burkart stems from his December 2015 arrest for stalking and harassing his ex-girlfriend, according to the LADB's recommendation. The girlfriend "previously filed reports of similar conduct" by Burkart, "and when warnings from the authorities did not hinder his efforts to follow her, she pressed charges," the recommendation said.

In September 2017, Burkart pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of telephone communications harassment, for which he received a six-month suspended jail sentence and two years of conditional probation.

"It is also noted that (Burkart)'s instances of misconduct began very soon after the termination of his probationary period imposed upon his conditional admission to the bar," the LADB's recommendation said. Burkart's "consistent and varied misconduct, including his continuing failure to address the obligations he owes as a professional, demonstrates a clear lack of moral fitness to practice law and warrants permanent disbarment."

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Organizations in this Story

Louisiana State Bar AssociationLouisiana Attorney Disciplinary BoardLouisiana Supreme Court

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