December 10, 1998
IN RE SAMUEL E. DIXON, JR., RESPONDENT. A MEMBER OF THE BAR OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA COURT OF APPEALS.
Before Schwelb and Ruiz, Associate Judges, and Newman, Senior
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Per Curiam:
In 1994, Samuel E. Dixon, Jr., a member of the Bar of the Supreme Court of Connecticut and of this court, settled a personal injury claim on behalf of a client in Connecticut for $13,500. Dixon received the settlement check and deposited it in a non-interest bearing client account. Dixon did not advise his client of the amount of the settlement offer, nor did he disclose to her his intention to settle the claim before he did so, or before he received the payment.
Dixon presented to the insurance company a general release purportedly signed by the client and witnessed by James J. Patterson on August 5, 1994. In fact, the release had been signed by the client on November 21, 1992, long before the settlement was negotiated. Moreover, Patterson was not present when Dixon's client signed the document. After Dixon received the settlement funds, he failed to make a prompt payment to his client.
In a proceeding instituted by disciplinary authorities in Connecticut, Dixon stipulated that the above-described conduct violated the Rules of Professional Conduct. Dixon was suspended from practice in Connecticut for nine months. *fn1
In light of Dixon's suspension in Connecticut, the Board on Professional Responsibility has recommended that this court impose reciprocal discipline and that we suspend Dixon from practice in the District for nine months. Neither Bar Counsel nor Dixon has filed an exception to the Board's recommendation, and our normally deferential standard of review is therefore even more deferential. See, e.g., In re Goldsborough, 654 A.2d 1285, 1288 (D.C. 1995). Accordingly, Samuel E. Dixon, Jr. is hereby suspended from practice for a period of nine months.
So ordered. *fn2 [721 A2d Page 574]