In Bloomberg Law, Noah Fiedler Discusses Why a Presidential Pardon Won't Shield Lawyers from Bar Discipline

December 29, 2020

Milwaukee-based partner Noah Fiedler offered legal insights in a Bloomberg Law article titled "Trump Pardons Won't Shield Lawyers Disciplined for Ethics," authored by legal reporter Melissa Heelan. Fiedler discussed whether a presidential pardon provides protection to lawyers from bar sanctions.

Since assuming office, President Donald Trump has issued more than 70 pardons, with additional pardons expected before he leaves office on January 20, 2021. Those pardoned include President Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and Dutch national Alexander Van der Zwaan. Both lawyers, Manafort and Van der Zwaan were disbarred following Manafort's conviction for bank fraud and Van der Zwaan's guilty plea for lying to special counsel Robert Mueller's office, which was investigating Russian interference in the U.S. 2016 election.

Although practitioners who receive a presidential pardon are cleared of their criminal offenses, disciplinary matters speak to a lawyer’s character and fitness to practice; meaning a pardoned lawyer can still be unfit to practice even if pardoned, or charged but not convicted of a crime. As Fiedler explains "the [legal ethics] disciplinary track runs separate from the criminal track."

Read the full article on the Bloomberg Law website (subscription may be required)

"Trump Pardons Won't Shield Lawyers Disciplined for Ethics," was published by Bloomberg Law on December 24, 2020.

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