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Board of Bar Overseers/BBO

Massachusetts Attorney: Ethics Defense For Lawyers

Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers Defense Attorneys

Attorneys are subject to strict rules regarding fee arrangements, ethics obligations, IOLTA Accounts, and other regulations imposed by the Supreme Judicial Court to continue practicing law in Massachusetts. The Board of Bar Overseers (BBO) is the agency established by the Supreme Judicial Court to ensure compliance with the attorney regulations and rules under the Rules of Professional Conduct. When a complaint or petition is filed against an attorney by the BBO, attorneys rely on the experience of Carmen A. Frattaroli & Associates attorneys.

The firm has represented many lawyers in BBO investigations and hearings, as well as legal malpractice claims. When there is a complaint before the board, hiring an ethics defense lawyer who is familiar with the process can protect against the loss or suspension of an attorney's license. To schedule a preliminary evaluation of a BBO complaint or Petition for Discipline, contact Carmen A. Frattaroli & Associates.

Office of Bar Counsel and Board of Bar Overseers

The process of filing a complaint with the BBO is relatively simple. The BBO will receive a complaint from a client, another lawyer or a judge in the community with a short synopsis of what the attorney did wrong. The complaint letter may include documents and pleadings to demonstrate the alleged improper activity.

Most professional liability insurance policies cover your legal expense to defend attorneys at the BBO. Covers inquires and investigations from the very first letter the attorney revive from the office of bar council. Typically this coverage, which is separate from your general negligence and malpractice coverage has no deductible.

Often, BBO complaints are dismissed because the evidence provided demonstrates that the improper action alleged is not worthy of ethical investigation. The lawyers comprising the BBO may investigate the complaint and if worthy of further action, the Office of Bar Counsel will file a Petition for Discipline, which is a formal charge against a lawyer which will require a resolution in front of the BBO.

Our role is to defend against the Petition for Discipline and rebut the allegations of wrongdoing. We will compile evidence and present a strong case defending against the allegations in the complaint.

Resolving BBO Complaints

Once the attorneys for the BBO (the "Office of Bar Counsel") are reviewing the complaint, there are multiple potential levels of resolution of the case, including:

  • Dismissal of the complaint
  • Diversion program, with certain requirements
  • Private admonition
  • Public reprimand
  • License suspension, including Term suspension for a certain length of time
  • Indefinite suspension
  • Disbarment

We are knowledgeable on the alternatives, such as diversion programs, that limit the consequences of a disciplinary action. We can also assist attorneys with the process for reinstating a suspended license, including the filing of the Reinstatement Petition with the BBO.

Commitment to Clients

At Carmen A. Frattaroli & Associates, we are committed to protecting our clients' interests. As a widely-recognized firm known for representing lawyers, we uphold the values of the profession while providing cost-effective professional license defense. Contact our firm or call 888-408-5669 to schedule a preliminary evaluation of a BBO investigation.

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Office Location

Law Office of
Carmen A. Frattaroli
& Associates

319 Derby Street
Salem, Massachusetts (MA) 01970

Phone: (978) 740-9501
Fax: (978) 740-9692

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Eastern Massachusetts legal malpractice, personal injury, and business and real estate litigation attorneys of the law offices of Carmen A. Frattaroli & Associates represent clients in the North Shore, South Shore, and Metro West greater Boston area, including Salem, Beverly, Lynn, Boston, Worcester, Lowell, Lawrence, Cambridge, Dedham, Newton, Framingham, Saugus, and Gloucester. Counties served include Essex County, Middlesex County, Suffolk County, Norfolk County, and Worcester County.

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