Filed December 9, 2015

In re David Kyle Cooper
Attorney-Respondent

Commission No. 2014PR00166

Synopsis of Hearing Board Report and Recommendation
(December 2015)

The Administrator filed a three-count Complaint on December 18, 2014. Counts I and II allege Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law after his removal from the Master Roll for failing to register. In Count III, the Administrator alleges Respondent made false statements, while under oath, during an ARDC investigation.

The Hearing Panel found that the Administrator proved all charges of misconduct by clear and convincing evidence. Based upon the evidence in aggravation and the lack of mitigation, the Panel recommended Respondent be suspended for ninety (90) days and until he completes the ARDC Professionalism seminar.

BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD
OF THE
ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION
AND
DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION

In the Matter of:

DAVID KYLE COOPER,

Attorney-Respondent,

No. 6277289.

Commission No. 2014PR00166

REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION OF THE HEARING BOARD

SUMMARY OF THE REPORT

Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law on two occasions after having been removed from the Master Roll for failing to register. He also made false statements, while under oath, to the ARDC during a disciplinary investigation. We recommend Respondent be suspended for 90 (ninety) days and until he completes the ARDC Professionalism seminar.

INTRODUCTION

The hearing in this matter was held on September 18, 2015, at the Chicago offices of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission ("ARDC"), before a Panel of the Hearing Board consisting of Jeffrey S. Torosian, Chair, Frank J. Ponticelli, and Justine A. Witkowski. Gina M. Abbatemarco appeared on behalf of the Administrator. Respondent appeared pro se.

PLEADINGS

The Administrator filed a three-count Complaint on December 18, 2014. Counts I and II allege Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law after his removal from the Master Roll for failing to register. In Count III, the Administrator alleges Respondent made false statements, while under oath, during an ARDC investigation.

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Respondent's Answer to Complaint, filed January 20, 2015, admitted a few factual allegations. Respondent made no answer to most of the remaining factual allegations claiming they were legal conclusions or that he did not have sufficient information. With respect to the charges of misconduct, Respondent stated they were legal conclusions which required no answer.

ALLEGED MISCONDUCT

The Administrator alleged Respondent:1) practiced law in a jurisdiction in violation of the regulation of the legal profession in that jurisdiction (Counts I and II); 2) engaged in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice (Counts I and II); 3) engaged in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation (Count III); and 4) knowingly made false statements of material fact in a disciplinary proceeding (Count III), in violation of Rules 5.5(a), 8.1(a), 8.4(c)1, and 8.4(d) of the 2010 Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct.

EVIDENCE

The Administrator called Respondent as an adverse witness and presented the testimony of Andrew Oliva. Administrator's Exhibits 1 through 8 were received in evidence. (Tr. 4-5). Respondent did not testify on his own behalf, did not present any witnesses, and did not offer any written exhibits.

FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW

In attorney disciplinary proceedings, the Administrator has the burden of proving the charges of misconduct by clear and convincing evidence. Illinois Supreme Court Rule 753(c) (6); See also, In re Ingersoll, 186 Ill. 2d 163, 710 N.E.2d 390 (1999). Clear and convincing evidence constitutes a high level of certainty, which is greater than a preponderance of the evidence, but less than proof beyond a reasonable doubt. See, e.g., People v. Williams, 143 Ill. 2d 477, 577 N.E.2d 762 (1991). It is the responsibility of the Hearing Panel to determine the

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credibility of the witnesses, weigh conflicting testimony, draw reasonable inferences and make factual findings based upon all the evidence. In re Timpone, 157 Ill. 2d 178, 623 N.E.2d 300, 308 (1993).

I.    In Count I, Respondent is charged with engaging in the unauthorized practice of law and engaging in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice in violation of Rules 5.5(a) and 8.4(d) of the 2010 Rules of Professional Conduct.

A. Summary of Count I

Respondent was removed from the Master Roll in March 2011. After his removal, Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by representing George Caleel in a marital dissolution proceeding. This conduct was also prejudicial to the administration of justice.

B. Evidence Considered

Illinois Supreme Court Rule 756 requires that attorneys admitted to practice law in the State of Illinois register and pay a registration fee to the ARDC on or before January 1 each year. Rule 756 further provides that the Administrator remove the name of any attorney who has not registered by February 1 from the Master Roll of Attorneys authorized to practice law in Illinois. (Tr. 15).

Andrew Oliva has been the registrar of the ARDC for the last two years and served as deputy registrar six years prior to that. (Tr. 13-14). The registrar administers the registration process and is the custodian of the Master Roll of Attorneys, a list of all attorneys admitted to practice within the State of Illinois. (Tr. 15). Mr. Oliva explained that before November 1 of each year, the ARDC sends an initial notice to all attorneys who are required to register. The notice consists of forms and instructions, and contains language advising that the failure to register will result in removal from the Master Roll. (Tr. 18-19). If an attorney is not registered by January 1, the ARDC sends out a final notice, which also includes language advising that the

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failure to register will result in removal from the Master Roll. (Tr. 19-20). Once the attorney has been removed from the Master Roll, the ARDC sends the attorney a removal notice and advises s/he is no longer authorized to practice law. (Tr. 17-18, 20-21).

Respondent was admitted to the practice of law in Illinois in 2002. (Tr. 37). In 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014, the ARDC sent an initial notice, a final notice, and a removal notice to Respondent. (Adm. Ex. 1). For a portion of each of those years, Respondent was removed from the Master Roll for failure to register and pay the applicable fees. (Tr. 29).

In 2011, the removal notice was sent to Respondent on March 7, 2011. (Tr. 21-22; Adm. Ex. 1). Respondent completed the registration forms and paid all late fees and was restored to the Master Roll on June 29, 2011. (Tr. 25; Adm. Ex. 1).

Respondent filed a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in the Circuit Court of Cook County, case no. 10 D 10744, on behalf of George Caleel.2 (Tr. 53). On March 16, 2011, Respondent signed and filed a Certification and Agreement by Counsel, in which Respondent represented there were no contested issues between the parties and requested a prove-up. (Tr. 54; Adm. Ex. 4).

In e-mail correspondence with Mrs. Caleel's attorney on March 10, 2011, Respondent referenced conversations with Mr. Caleel regarding visitation and stated, "I will get a revised copy to you in the next day." (Adm. Ex. 5). On March 16, 2011, Respondent sent an e-mail to Mrs. Caleel's attorney that stated, "Please find attached the revised [Joint Parenting Agreement]. The changes are highlighted." (Adm. Ex. 5). On April 12 and 13, 2011, Respondent and counsel for Mrs. Caleel discussed further changes to the Joint Parenting Agreement by email. (Adm. Ex. 5).

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On April 14, 2011, Respondent appeared in court as counsel for Mr. Caleel for a prove-up hearing. At that time, the parties filed and presented a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage, which included a Marital Settlement Agreement and Joint Parenting Agreement. At the conclusion of the hearing, the court entered the Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage. (Adm. Ex. 4).

Respondent admitted that he had been removed from the Master Roll during the time he was representing Mr. Caleel in the dissolution proceeding. (Tr. 53-54). However, he testified that he did not seek out Mr. Caleel as a client. Mr. and Mrs. Caleel were both friends of his and he did not want to "involve [himself] in a professional manner in that personal issue." Respondent admitted he reviewed the Joint Parenting Agreement and "had some points that I thought should be clarified, some correspondence with [Mrs. Caleel's] attorney, but it was a memo." (Tr. 45-46). According to Respondent, Mr. and Mrs. Caleel were performing the edits and he was simply "memorializing them." (Tr. 56-57). He described the Caleels as sophisticated people who came to their own agreement. He admitted he was "there for the entry of the order," but "didn't speak a word. I was just there to enter it." (Tr. 46, 58-59).

Respondent further testified that Mrs. Caleel's attorney did the majority of the work preparing the Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage and Marital Settlement Agreement. Respondent's name appears as counsel for Mr. Caleel in the Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage, Marital Settlement Agreement, and Joint Parenting Agreement. In addition, at the bottom of the last page of the Marital Settlement Agreement and Joint Parenting Agreement, only Respondent's firm name, address, telephone number, and firm ID number are listed. (Tr. 54-55; Adm. Ex. 4). Respondent explained, "[Mr. Caleel], being the Petitioner, we put stuff on. I would file the matters and have it just because as a matter of course. I'm the Petitioner. I don't

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think Respondents can file it." (Tr. 55). Respondent added that the address on the documents was his home address "so I wasn't holding myself out." (Tr. 55-56; Adm. Ex. 4).

C. Analysis and Conclusions

Respondent is charged with engaging in the unauthorized practice law after having been removed from the Master Roll for failing to register and pay his registration fees. Although the term "practice of law" does not have a precise definition, the Supreme Court has stated that it includes any service requiring the use of legal knowledge such as the preparation of legal instruments of all kinds, preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions, and all action taken for [clients] in matters connected with the law. In re Howard, 188 Ill. 2d 423, 438, 721 N.E.2d 1126 (1999)), People ex rel. Illinois State Bar Association v. People's Stock Yards State Bank, 344 Ill. 462, 476, 176 N.E. 901, 907 (1931).

Respondent was notified of his removal from the Master Roll on March 7, 2011. The removal notice included language that he was no longer authorized to practice law. In addition, and most importantly, Illinois Supreme Court Rule 756 clearly states that an attorney who is not listed on the Master Roll is not entitled to practice law or to hold himself out as authorized to practice law. Notwithstanding this clear pronouncement, Respondent continued to represent Mr. Caleel in his marital dissolution proceeding after he was removed from the Master Roll.

Days after his removal from the Master Roll, Respondent signed and filed a Certification and Agreement by Counsel, which stated there were no contested issues between Mr. and Mrs. Caleel and requested a prove-up. Respondent also negotiated changes to the Marital Settlement Agreement and Joint Parenting Agreement with counsel for Mrs. Caleel. On April 14, 2011, Respondent appeared in court for a prove-up hearing as counsel for Mr. Caleel. Given the standard articulated above in Howard, we find the Administrator proved by clear and convincing

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evidence that Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law, in violation of Rule 5.5(a).

Respondent's characterization of his actions with respect to the Caleel matter were incredible and unpersuasive. Even if we were to accept that Respondent did not believe he was practicing law or did not intend to practice law, which we do not, we would still find a violation of Rule 5.5(a). The language of Rule 5.5(a) is clear, "A lawyer shall not practice law in a jurisdiction in violation of the regulation of the legal profession in that jurisdiction, or assist another in doing so." "By its terms, Rule 5.5(a) does not require that the unauthorized practice of law be intentional or knowing. It makes no exception for the attorney who is uninformed or confused about his status. In effect, the rule creates a sort of 'strict liability' for attorneys." In re Thomas, 2012 IL113035, par. 77. Additionally, the Court has previously stated, "[a] common maxim holds that ignorance of the law is no excuse, and this is particularly true in a case where the person who claims lack of knowledge of a relevant directive is a practicing attorney." In re Cheronis, 114 Ill. 2d 527, 535, 502 N.E.2d 722 (1986).

The Administrator also charges Respondent with engaging in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice by holding himself out as authorized to practice law after removal from the Master Roll. An attorney's conduct is prejudicial to the administration of justice if it has an effect on the representation of a client or the outcome of a case, undermines the judicial process or jeopardizes a client's interests. In re Storment, 203 Ill. 2d 378, 399, 786 N.E.2d 963, (2002); Thomas, 2010 IL113035, pars. 91, 123. In Thomas, the attorney's unauthorized practice of law while suspended was prejudicial to the administration of justice because it "placed the interests of his clients in jeopardy." Id. at par. 123.

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In this matter, Respondent prepared pleadings on behalf of Mr. Caleel and appeared in court as his counsel for a prove-up hearing at which time a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage was entered. Pleadings signed by an individual who is not authorized to practice law are a nullity. See Blue v. People, 223 Ill. App. 3d 594, 585 N.E.2d 625 (1992). In addition, judgments entered in proceedings prosecuted by an individual who is not authorized to practice law are void. Id. As a result, Respondent's conduct placed Mr. Caleel's interests in jeopardy. Accordingly, we find Respondent engaged in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice.

II.    In Count II, Respondent is charged with engaging in the unauthorized practice of law and engaging in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice in violation of Rules 5.5(a) and 8.4(d) of the 2010 Rules of Professional Conduct.

A. Summary of Count II

Respondent was removed from the Master Roll in March 2012. After his removal, Respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by filing a complaint at law on behalf of Jillian Coriglione. This conduct was also prejudicial to the administration of justice.

B. Evidence Considered

We consider the evidence presented in section I in addition to the following.

In 2012, the notice of removal from the Master Roll of attorneys authorized to practice law in Illinois was sent to Respondent on March 1, 2012. (Tr. 22; Adm. Ex. 1). Respondent completed the registration forms and paid all late fees and was restored to the Master Roll on May 24, 2012. (Tr. 28; Adm. Ex. 1).

On March 16, 2012, Respondent filed a Complaint at Law on behalf of Jillian Coriglione. (Adm. Ex. 2). The Complaint was signed by Respondent as "One of the Attorneys for Plaintiff." He also caused summons to issue in that matter. (Adm. Ex. 2). Respondent testified that he believed the statute of limitations was about to run on Ms. Coriglione's claim, so he filed a personal injury complaint on her behalf "to preserve that matter." (Tr. 46).

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C. Analysis and Conclusions

Based on the case law and analysis contained in section IB above, we find clear and convincing evidence that Respondent violated Rule 5.5(a) when he filed a Complaint at Law on behalf of Ms. Coriglione when he was unauthorized to practice law. In addition to the analysis and case law contained in section IB above, we note that in Illinois a complaint signed by a person not licensed to practice in Illinois is a nullity and is properly dismissed with prejudice notwithstanding subsequent participation of Illinois counsel. Fruin v. Northwestern Medical Faculty Foundation, Inc. et al., 194 Ill. App. 3d 1061, 551 N.E.2d 1010 (1990). Accordingly, we find clear and convincing evidence that Respondent violated Rule 8.4(d).

III.    In Count III, Respondent is charged with knowingly making false statements of material fact in a disciplinary matter and engaging in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation in violation of Rules 8.1(a) and 8.4(c) of the 2010 Rules of Professional Conduct.

A. Summary of Count III

Respondent made false statements during a sworn statement conducted by the ARDC regarding contempt orders entered against him in his own domestic relations matter. We find he did not make false statements during the same sworn statement regarding his unauthorized practice of law.

B. Evidence Considered

We consider the evidence presented in sections I and II in addition to the following.

On March 27, 2013, Respondent appeared at the ARDC, pursuant to subpoena, for a sworn statement. (Tr. 47-48). At that time, while testifying under oath, Respondent was asked the following question about the periods of time during which he was removed from the Master Roll:

Question:  Did you practice at all during the time periods where you have been removed from the master roll?

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Answer:    No. I don't believe so, no. It's possible given that I'm not sure when I would have been knocked off, but I don't believe I did. 

Respondent was later asked the following questions about Respondent's own pending domestic relations matter:

Question:   Did the Court as a result hold you in contempt?

Answer:     No.

Question:   So no order of contempt was ever entered?

Answer:     No.

* * *

Question:    Are you aware of any orders being entered that you should be remanded?

Answer:     No, there hasn't been. I know there hasn't been.

* * *

Question:   So, to your knowledge, there has never been any civil or criminal contempt matter relative to this matter entered against you?

Answer:     No.

The order entered November 9, 2010, in Respondent's domestic relations matter, stated that Respondent was "found in contempt of court for his failure to pay child support . . . " Respondent was present in court at that time. (Tr. 49-50; Adm. Ex. 7). On June 5, 2012, the court entered an Order of Adjudication of Indirect Civil Contempt for Failure to Pay Child Support and/or Order of Commitment (Adm. Ex. 7). Respondent was found to be in "indirect civil contempt of Court for willful failure to obey the Court's order . . . " and "ordered committed to Cook County Jail, there to remain until s/he shall have purged her/himself of contempt . . . " (Adm. Ex. 7). The commitment was stayed until July 3, 2012 (Adm. Ex. 7).

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At this hearing, Respondent testified he did not recall whether he was present in court on June 5, but the Order indicates he was. (Tr. 50-51). Respondent further stated he did not know if any contempt orders had been entered against him during his domestic relations proceeding. He acknowledged that language finding him in contempt is included in the November 9 order, but explained "the judge never stated, you know, Respondent, you are in contempt." (Tr. 49-50). He stated it was a contentious divorce and "I never felt that I was in contempt of court as far as any disrespect towards the judge or the Court." (Tr. 49). Respondent characterized the issue as "financial matters" and stated, "It's an indirect civil contempt order for support. I think I appeared at the next court date and paid." (Tr. 51).

C. Analysis and Conclusions

Respondent is charged with violating Rules 8.1(a) and 8.4(c) during his testimony at a sworn statement conducted by the ARDC. Specifically, the Administrator's charges are predicated on Respondent's statements that he did not practice law during the time he was removed from the Master Roll and his statements that he was not held in contempt during his own domestic relations matter.

Rule 8.1(a) states, in relevant part:

. . . a lawyer in connection with a . . . disciplinary matter, shall not: (a) knowingly make a false statement of material fact

Pursuant to Rule 1.0(f), "knowingly" denotes actual knowledge of the fact in question and "[a] person's knowledge may be inferred from circumstances."

Rule 8.4(c)has been broadly construed "to include anything calculated to deceive, including the suppression of truth and the suggestion of falsity." In re Edmonds, 2014 IL 117696, par. 53. The Court has stated, "There is essentially no way to define every act or form of conduct that would be considered a violation of Rule 8.4[(c)]. Each case is unique and the

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circumstances surrounding the respondent's conduct must be taken into consideration." In re Cutright, 233 Ill. 2d 474, 490, 910 N.E.2d 581 (2009).

With respect to the exchange regarding Respondent's unauthorized practice of law, the Administrator failed to present clear and convincing evidence that Respondent knowingly made a false statement of material fact to the ARDC or engaged in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation. When asked if he practiced during the time in which he had been removed from the Master Roll, Respondent equivocates. He initially answers no, then says that it is possible, and ultimately says he does not believe he did. We find that statement does not amount to a violation of Rules 8.1(a) and 8.4(c) under a clear and convincing standard.

With respect to Respondent's statements regarding whether he had been held in contempt during his domestic relations matter, we find the Administrator proved violations of Rules 8.1(a) and 8.4(c) by clear and convincing evidence. In response to each of the four questions presented, Respondent was unequivocal. He flatly denied any order of contempt was ever entered against him and said that he knew no order was ever entered committing him to Cook County Jail. However, the Administrator presented multiple court orders that found Respondent in contempt of court for failing to pay child support and one order committing him to jail. Each of those orders was entered when Respondent was present in court. As a result, we find Respondent knowingly made false statements to the Administrator in violation of Rule 8.1(a) and engaged in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation in violation of Rule 8.4(c).

EVIDENCE OFFERED IN AGGRAVATION AND MITIGATION

In a letter dated April 10, 2012, the ARDC requested that Respondent respond to a request for investigation from a former client. The letter also advised Respondent that he had been removed from the Master Roll on February 27, 2012. After noting Respondent had been

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removed from the Master Roll for portions of 2009, 2010, and 2011, the ARDC requested Respondent provide an explanation for his failure to register timely and a description of the nature and extent of his law practice during those times. (Tr. 42-43; Adm. Ex. 8). After receiving no response to the April 10 letter, the ARDC sent Respondent a second letter, dated May 11, 2012, reminding Respondent of his duty to respond and seeking his compliance with its initial requests. In response to the ARDC, in a letter dated May 25, 2012, Respondent stated, "Since 2008, I have not actively practiced law . . . " (Adm. Ex. 8).

Respondent

Upon graduating from law school Respondent worked on Dan Hines' U.S. Senate campaign. After that, for approximately 18 months, he was a law clerk for Judge Kinnaird, the presiding judge of the Chancery Division in the Circuit Court of Cook County. Respondent then worked at the Illinois Attorney General's office for 18 months, before joining the law firm of Williams, Montgomery & John for "a couple years." After working at Bollinger, Ruberry & Garvey, he decided to leave the practice of law in 2008 and "pursued post-graduate work in the sciences." He has now returned to law and is "working on building up [his] practice." (Tr. 39). At the present time Respondent estimated he has less than ten client matters. (Tr. 40).

Prior Discipline

Respondent has no prior discipline.

RECOMMENDATION

A. Summary

We recommend Respondent be suspended for 90 (ninety) days and until he completes the ARDC Professionalism seminar. We base this recommendation on the significant factors in aggravation and Respondent's failure to present any evidence in mitigation. The requirement he complete the ARDC Professionalism seminar before returning to practice is necessary given his

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demonstrated inability to follow the Illinois Supreme Court Rules and the Rules of Professional Conduct.

B. Analysis

The purpose of the attorney disciplinary system is not to punish the attorney for his misconduct, but "to protect the public, maintain the integrity of the legal profession, and protect the administration of justice from reproach." In re Winthrop, 219 Ill. 2d 526, 559, 848 N.E.2d 961 (2006). In determining the appropriate sanction, we consider the nature and seriousness of the misconduct and any aggravating and mitigating circumstances shown by the evidence. See In re Gorecki, 208 Ill. 2d 350, 802 N.E.2d 1194 (2003).

In aggravation, we consider the actual or potential harm caused by Respondent's actions. See In re Saladino, 71 Ill. 2d 263, 375 N.E.2d 102 (1978). As discussed previously, Respondent's actions placed his clients' interests in jeopardy. The validity of Mr. Caleel's proceeding could be attacked and the judgment of dissolution nullified. Although Respondent claimed he filed Ms. Coriglione's complaint in order to preserve her claim, the pleading was actually a nullity.

Respondent's failure to acknowledge his misconduct is also a factor in aggravation. During these proceedings Respondent minimized and mischaracterized his actions. Instead of showing he understood the seriousness of his misconduct, his presentation was blase'. Lastly, Respondent's removal from the Master Roll ten of the thirteen years he has been licensed, and his unauthorized practice of law on two occasions show a troubling pattern of disrespect for the Rules of the Supreme Court and ARDC.

Respondent made no effort to present any evidence in mitigation. We heard no evidence from the legal community regarding Respondent's character and no evidence of any pro bono work. He presented no testimony on his own behalf and chose not to express any remorse for his

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misconduct. We acknowledge Respondent has no prior discipline. However, given the short time Respondent has actually practiced law, we give that factor little weight.

The Administrator recommends a ninety-day suspension. Respondent ultimately acknowledged some measure of discipline is warranted, but argues a suspension would be "heavy-handed."

In cases involving the unauthorized practice of law after removal from the Master Roll, the Court usually imposes a period of suspension. In In re Vazanellis, 2014PR00022, M.R. 26820 (Sept. 12, 2014), the attorney was removed from the Master Roll for approximately eighteen months, but continued to represent clients in several different matters. He had no prior discipline and expressed remorse for his conduct. The Court ordered a thirty-day suspension. A sixty-day suspension was ordered in In re Stephens, 08 SH 104, M.R. 23258 (Sept. 22, 2009) for engaging in the unauthorized practice of law after failing to register and for failing to respond to the Administrator's requests for information in three matters. Although the attorney had prior discipline, he presented significant mitigation.

In In re Goosby, 99 CH 62, M.R. 17201 (Jan. 22, 2001), the attorney engaged in the unauthorized practice of law after being removed from the Master Roll for failing to register and made false statements in an affidavit filed with the court. In mitigation, the attorney suffered from depression, readily admitted his misconduct and expressed genuine remorse. In aggravation, the attorney had been reprimanded in a previous disciplinary hearing. While the Hearing Board recommended a two-month suspension, the Court ordered respondent suspended for four months and until he paid his registration fees and penalties.

Unlike the attorneys in Vazanellis and Stephens, Respondent presented no mitigating evidence. As a result, a lengthier suspension is warranted. Goosby is instructive in that, as in

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this matter, the attorney engaged in the unauthorized practice of law and made false statements. Therefore, we recommend a ninety-day suspension. We also recommend Respondent complete the ARDC's Professionalism Seminar prior to his return to the practice of law. Respondent's demonstrated inability to follow the Illinois Supreme Court Rules and the Rules of Professional Conduct require we impose this additional measure in order to protect the public and the administration of justice.

Accordingly, after considering the nature of the Respondent's misconduct, the evidence in aggravation and mitigation, and the precedent discussed above, we recommend that the Respondent, David Kyle Cooper, be suspended for ninety (90) days and until he completes the ARDC Professionalism seminar.

Respectfully Submitted,

Jeffrey S. Torosian
Frank J. Ponticelli
Justine A. Witkowski

CERTIFICATION

I, Kenneth G. Jablonski, Clerk of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois and keeper of the records, hereby certifies that the foregoing is a true copy of the Report and Recommendation of the Hearing Board, approved by each Panel member, entered in the above entitled cause of record filed in my office on December 9, 2015.

Kenneth G. Jablonski, Clerk of the
Attorney Registration and Disciplinary
Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois

______________________

1 In Count III, paragraph 29(b), the Administrator charged a violation of "Rule 8.4(a-04) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct (2010)." The correct Rule number associated with the 2010 Rules is 8.4(c). This typographical error does not affect the Panel's analysis or decision.

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2 There is no allegation that Respondent was unauthorized to practice law when he filed this petition.