Louisiana Record

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Dissenting justice argues New Orleans attorney should not be allowed to apply for readmission

By Karen Kidd | Nov 26, 2017

New Orleans attorney Ramsey Terry Marcello, whose conditional admission to practice law in Louisiana was revoked in 2011, will not be readmitted soon and should not be allowed to again apply for readmission, according to a recent Louisiana Supreme Court ruling and one justice's dissent.

Justice Marcus R. Clark, in his Nov. 17 dissent in part from the majority who denied Marcello's application for readmission, said he agrees with that denial. "I dissent, though, from that portion of the order which states that [Marcello] may reapply after he has fully complied with this court’s Nov. 16, 2011, order," Clark wrote.

Marcello "has admittedly failed to comply" with requirements in that 2011 state supreme court order, Clark wrote. Marcello is not eligible to apply for readmission until he completes six weeks of inpatient substance abuse treatment and enters a five-year attorney assistance program contract that includes quarterly hair testing, according to that order.

"Again, by his own admission, he continues to use alcohol two to three times a week," Clark wrote. Marcello also "continues to deny that he has a drug and/or alcohol abuse problem." the judge said. [Marcello] "has attempted to evade responsibility for his misconduct by lying and deceit. He has filed false pleadings in this court and shaved his entire body and cut his fingernails to the quick in an unsuccessful attempt to avoid being tested for cocaine use [he tested positive].

Justices John L. Weimer, Bernette Joshua Johnson, Greg G. Guidry, Scott Crichton and James T. Genovese concurred in denying Marcello's application. The court's decision is dated Nov. 17 but bears a Nov. 20 stamp of the Louisiana State Bar's attorney discipline board. The majority ruling allows Marcello to reapply after he complies with the November 2011 requirements.

In April 2010, the state supreme court granted Marcello conditional admission to practice law in Louisiana, despite a previous DWI charge, according to attorney disciplinary board recommendations this past September. Marcello was admitted to the bar on June 17, 2010, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar's website.

In July 2011,  Marcello was suspended and about five months later, the state Supreme Court revoked Marcello's conditional admission.

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Louisiana State Bar Association Louisiana Supreme Court