Legal Ethics

Matrimonial lawyer made false statements in suit against ex-client's husband, bar complaint alleges


In a disciplinary complaint filed on Valentine’s Day, the North Carolina State Bar charges a matrimonial lawyer with bringing a baseless lawsuit.

After being named as a defendant in an alienation of affections complaint filed by the husband of a former client, attorney David Shawn Clark subsequently filed suit himself against the plaintiff husband. He claimed that the husband’s allegations of a sexual relationship between the attorney and his wife were false and defamatory and incorrectly accused the plaintiff of falsifying evidence, the bar contends in its complaint (ASP) against Clark.

In fact, attorney Clark had indeed had an extramarital affair with the plaintiff’s then-estranged wife, while representing the woman in a family law matter, the bar complaint alleges. And, it also says, there was no basis for Clark’s claims in his own complaint that the plaintiff husband’s allegations of a sexual relationship between Clark and his then-client were false and defamatory. The husband’s lawsuit against the attorney was filed soon after the affair between Clark and the woman ended, the bar complaint says.

Clark is also accused of revealing confidential information about his former client in the defamation suit.

An Observer News Enterprise article published in 2011 provides further details.

Hat tip: Legal Profession Blog.

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