Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Oregon Rep. Dan Dolyes Previous Trouble With The Law

This is another legal problem Oregon's Representative, Dan Doyle had a little over a year ago.

Metro News
Bar suspends lawmaker's license for 30 days

Rep. Dan Doyle, R-Salem, is sanctioned in connection with complaints from two former clients

Friday, May 21, 2004


SALEM -- The Oregon State Bar has suspended Rep. Dan Doyle's law license for 30 days for failing to return money and pursue the claims of one client, and failing to return the files of another.

Doyle, R-Salem, is a high-profile member of the Oregon House who recently lost a bid to be House majority leader. The two-term legislator is sponsoring a tax reform proposal being considered for a special session in June.

The bar's disciplinary agreement addresses the grievances of two clients Doyle represented between April 2001 and mid-2002. A formal complaint was filed in May 2003.
In the first case, Doyle failed to properly account for $4,000 paid in retainer money by the client, and he did not pursue her case diligently or return her phone calls. Doyle eventually returned the money in July 2002, two months after her new lawyer demanded it.

In the second case, Doyle took about eight months to provide a client's new attorney with a copy of her file. He handed over the file in March 2003. Doyle declined to comment on Thursday, but issued a statement in which he said this was a "hard and embarrassing lesson to learn."

He said he underestimated the time it would take to represent his law clients and fulfill his duties as a legislator. The 2001 legislative session ended in July, but lawmakers convened for five record special sessions in 2002.

"I placed my legislative duties before the duty I owed to my individual law clients and there were repercussions for my actions," he said.

The state bar found as mitigating circumstances the absence of a prior disciplinary record and the absence of "a dishonest or selfish" motive.

Doyle, who was admitted to the bar in 1992, cooperated with the investigation.

Doyle said he would start his suspension June 5. He must also pay the state bar about $500 for costs incurred.

Kateri Walsh, a spokeswoman for the state bar, said there are roughly 11,000 lawyers on active status in Oregon. The bar sanctioned 69 lawyers last year, including 24 license suspensions and 32 public reprimands.

Suspensions can range from 30 days to 5 years.

Janie Har: 503-221-8213;


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