Practice Management

Alleged phony lawyer practiced law at New York law firm

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A Buffalo, New York, law firm hired a phony lawyer who represented at least nine clients, according to a press release announcing charges against the alleged fraudster.

Andrew Schnorr, 39, has been charged with unauthorized practice of law and grand larceny in the third degree. The grand larceny charge is based on legal fees of more than $22,000 charged to the clients.

Publications with coverage include Reuters, the Buffalo News and WGRZ.

Schnorr got hired as an associate after submitting a fabricated resumé, according to the March 9 press release and complaint posted by Reuters. He falsely claimed that he had a JD and an MBA, that he had graduated summa cum laude from the New York University School of Law, that he had passed bar exams in New York and California, and that he had worked as a lawyer in two previous positions, prosecutors allege.

Schnorr represented at least nine clients in civil matters after he began work at the firm in July 2019. His representation included appearing at depositions and participating in settlement conferences. He got fired in August 2019 after the firm became aware that Schnorr wasn’t a lawyer. according to the complaint. He was paid $6,193 before his firing.

The law firm reimbursed the clients for the fees paid.

The investigation began after another attorney complained about Schnorr’s competence during a legal proceeding. The last time that an attorney practiced in New York with the name of Andrew Schnorr was in 1920, according to the complaint.

If convicted, Schnorr faces a potential sentence of two and one-third years to seven years in prison.

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