LOS ANGELES — Pasadena attorney Mary Derparseghian was disbarred
by the State Bar Court of California on Jan. 19.
The decision came after both the attorney and the Office of the
Chief Trial Counsel appealed the original disciplinary ruling
suspending the attorney for two years for misconduct a client matter.
In the first
matter, Derparseghian was hired by two clients in February 2010
to represent them in a complaint against their homeowner’s
association. The clients paid the attorney $5,000 in advance fees
that Derparseghian failed to deposit into her client trust account.
The attorney earned her clients $111,500, of which $65,799.76 was to
be allotted to them. Derparseghian failed to maintain that balance in
her trust account and withdrew nearly $90,000 for herself. The
clients contacted the attorney for their settlement, but
Derparseghian allegedly misaddressed a letter to the clients that
explained the settlement process and requested signatures for the
funds to be released.
The clients did not receive the letters and filed complaints with
the State Bar of California.
In another matter, the lawyer was accused
of not properly representing a client, including not telling him
about a necessary court appearance and not getting in a continuance
The original decision to suspend Derparseghian was overturned upon
appeal when it was determined that the attorney’s actions were
intentional and additional aggravating factors were discovered than
Derparseghian will be required to comply with the California Rules
of Court Rule
9.20 subsections (a) and (c) in regards to her disbarment. The
rules require Derparseghian to notify all of her clients of the
ruling, deliver any papers necessary to clients in regards to their
cases, return any fees that remain unearned, and alert opposing
counsel in any pending litigation of her disbarment. Derparseghian
must then file with the clerk of the State Bar Court that she has
complied with the provisions of her disbarment.
Derparseghian was admitted
to the State Bar in 2003.
Court documents for all State Bar Court of California cases can be
located online at calbar.ca.gov.