Hearing panel recommends disbarred Covington attorney not be readmitted

By Karen Kidd | Dec 6, 2018

NEW ORLEANS (Louisiana Record) – A Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) hearing committee recently recommended that disbarred Covington attorney David H. Bernstein not be readmitted to the practice of law.

"Having reviewed all the evidence and listened to testimony of multiple witnesses, the committee's concern's regarding (Bernstein)'s honesty, character and integrity persists," LADB Hearing Committee No. 23 said in its 18-page recommendation issued Nov. 30 regarding Bernstein's petition for readmission.

Bernstein was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on Oct. 7, 1983, according to his profile on the Louisiana State Bar Association's website.

Bernstein was disbarred in October 2007 regarding allegations he misappropriated funds from two law firms for which he was working.

In June 2015, an LADB hearing committee recommended Bernstein be readmitted to the practice of law. The following September, the LADB also recommended Bernstein's petition for readmission be granted.

In November 2015, the state Supreme Court denied Bernstein's petition and ruled Bernstein may not again apply for readmission until two years had passed. The high court did not issue an opinion with its denial but two justices, Justice Alicia Jeannette Theriot Knoll and Justice Marcus R. Clark, dissented in part from the majority. In their dissents, the two justices said they would not have allowed Bernstein to reapply in two years. "He lacks the honesty and integrity required to practice law," Clark said in his dissent.

Bernstein applied for readmission in December 2017. In May, the office of disciplinary counsel filed its response, formally taking no position over Bernstein's readmission. 

Dane S. Ciolino, Louisiana legal ethics lawyer and professor at Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, appeared on Bernstein's behalf during a hearing in August. 

Since his disbarment, Bernstein has been working as an accountant for a Metairie accounting firm, the principals of which testified during the hearing.

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Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board Louisiana State Bar Association Louisiana Supreme Court

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