$50,000 Sanction Imposed on Lawyer and Client for Presenting Forged Documents to Court
From Mullins v. Allstate Ins. Co., 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34811 (E.D. Mich. April 29, 2008):
Concerned about the allegations of fraud, the Court conducted a series of evidentiary hearings. At the conclusion of the hearings, the Court determined that the three documents presented by Plaintiff were indeed fraudulent. In a July 25, 2007 order following the evidentiary hearings, the Court reiterated its finding that the three documents were fraudulent and ruled that Plaintiff and Plaintiff's counsel acted in violation of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11 by presenting fraudulent documents to the Court, by failing to make a reasonable inquiry into the authenticity of the documents, and by failing to withdraw the documents in the face of overwhelming evidence of the forgery. The Court also stated that sanctions in the form of attorney fees, witness fees, and costs payable to Defendant may be appropriate. This Court then ordered Plaintiff to show cause within fourteen days as to why these sanctions should not be imposed. Although more than eight months have passed, to this day, Plaintiff has never filed a response to the order to show cause.
$50,000 sanction imposed on lawyer and client in partial reimbursement of almost $80,000 in fees and expenses incurred by the defendant in” drafting responses and other documents to be filed with the Court, using a handwriting expert to confirm the fraudulent nature of Plaintiff's documents, and attending three days of evidentiary hearings.”
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