NEW ORLEANS — Longtime Baton Rouge attorney Mark G. Simmons faces possible suspension following a Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) recommendation to the state Supreme Court.
In its nine-page recommendation, the LADB recommended Simmons' probation be revoked and that the previously deferred portion of his year-and-a-day suspension be made executory. The board also recommended that Simmons pay all costs and expenses in the matter.
The LADB handed down its recommendation following an office of disciplinary counsel motion filed April 29 to revoke Simmons' probation and make his suspension executory. The office of disciplinary counsel based its motion on Simmons' alleged failure to comply with auditing requirements in Louisiana Supreme Court's October 2017 order and Simmons' subsequent probation agreement, according to the LADB's recommendation.
Neither Simmons nor counsel representing him appeared for a May 23 hearing about the office of disciplinary counsel's motion, according to the LADB's recommendation.
The LADB's recommendation does not appear to be related to a hearing committee's recommendation in early April that Simmons be permanently disbarred after he allegedly practiced law while suspended. Simmons was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on April 27, 1990, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar's website.
In 2017, Simmons received a year-and-a-day suspension, with all but 60 days deferred, followed by two years of supervised probation over allegations he commingled his own funds with his clients' fund and did not cooperate with a state bar investigation.
Simmons served the active portion of his suspension and was reinstated, with his probationary period beginning in April 2018 but did not submit a required audit, nor identified a CPA to conduct the audit. In November, the office of disciplinary counsel informed Simmons that he was in violation of his probation agreement and that the office would prepare to file a motion to revoke his probation, according to the LADB's recommendation.