Post-Judgment Agreement to which Liberty was a proposed party and signatory, Respondent offered to enter into an agreement which would have the likely effect of restricting Respondent's right to practice law.
25. RPC 1.8(a) mandates that "a lawyer shall not enter into a business transaction with a client or knowingly acquire an ownership, possessory security or other pecuniary interest adverse to a client unless: (1) the transaction and terms on which the lawyer acquires the interest are fair and reasonable to the client and are fully disclosed and transmitted in writing in a manner that can be reasonably understood by the client, and(b) the client is advised in writing of the desirability of seeking and is given a reasonable opportunity to seek the advice of independent legal counsel on the transaction." Respondent did not advise Liberty, in writing, of the desirability or advisability of seeking the advice of independent legal counsel on the fairness of the $25,000 advance or give Liberty the reasonable opportunity to seek the advice of independent counsel before accepting the advance and signing the promissory note.
AGGRAVATION / MITIGATION
Pursuant to SCR 102.5(1) (Aggravation and mitigation), the Parties considered the following aggravation factors in considering the discipline to be imposed:
(i) Substantial experience in the practice of law.
Pursuant to SCR I02.5(2) (Aggravation and mitigation), the Parties considered the following mitigating factors in considering the discipline to be imposed:
(a) Absence of prior disciplinary record;
(e) Full and free disclosure to disciplinary authority or cooperative attitude toward proceeding including Respondent's self-reporting of the results of an arbitration proceeding which reopened this matter after the initial complaint had been closed;