LOS ANGELES — Delray Beach, Florida, attorney William Robert
Cohen was suspended from practicing law in California on Nov. 18
after violating his prior reproval conditions.
Cohen will be placed on a 30-day suspension in California and two
years of probation, according to his profile page
on the State Bar of California website. The State Bar Court of
California also stipulated that Cohen must adhere to all conditions
of his probation of face an additional year of suspension.
According to court documents,
the initial disciplinary action was sanctioned after Cohen pleaded
nolo contendere to charges of alleged misconduct committed in
Michigan, where he also is licensed. Conditions of Cohen’s
suspension required him to submit quarterly reports to the State Bar
of California, complete the Multistate Professional Responsibility
Examination, and provide proof of completion of at least six hours of
Minimum Continuing Legal Education.
Cohen failed to submit his quarterly report in October 2012 period
until contacted by his probation officer. The attorney claimed he had
prepared the reports and that his secretary had dropped the ball,
though no proof was provided that that had been the case.
In addition, Cohen did not satisfy the MPRE condition of his
probation. The attorney stated that he had enrolled and paid for the
examination, but upon his arrival at the testing center learned he
had been scammed and no such test would be administered at that
location on that day. Cohen petitioned to have the requirement
expunged from his probation, though he was unsuccessful.
Lastly, Cohen provided evidence that he had completed 12.5 MCLE
hours. However, the probation office determined that only four hours
fell under the stipulation. The remaining hours had been taken prior
to Cohen’s suspension date.
The attorney will need to meet the conditions he failed to satisfy
during his 30-day suspension and probation. If he is unable to
provide proof of MCLE hours, quarterly reports, and a passing score
on his MPRE, he will face a suspension of one year.
In accordance with the suspension, Cohen must comply with the
California Rules of Court Rule 9.20 subsections (a) and (c) if he is
suspended for 90 or more days. According to the rule's definition
on courts.ca.gov, the rule would require Cohen contact all of his
clients about the ruling, provide all papers that are deemed
necessary to clients for their cases, return any fees that are still
considered unearned, and notify the opposing counsel in any pending
litigation about his suspension. Cohen would then have to file with
the clerk of the State Bar Court that he has complied with the
provisions of his suspension.
According to his profile page, Cohen was admitted to the State Bar
of California in 1999. He was declared ineligible to practice law in
the state in 2004 before going back on active status in 2007.