Texas attorney barred from practicing law in California

By Olivia Olsen | Apr 23, 2017

LOS ANGELES — Thomas Scott Simons, a Plano, Texas attorney who was licensed to practice law in California, was recently disbarred by the State Bar Court of California. 

The decision to disbar the attorney was handed down on Feb. 4 and was due to his alleged failure to comply with two previous suspension orders.

Simons’ disciplinary history dates back to 2005 when he did not meet the minimum continuing legal education (MCLE) hours required to keep his license to practice active. He was placed on involuntary active status as a result. In 2006, the attorney neglected to pay his membership dues and was suspended by the state bar. 

As part of his original suspension, Simons needed to inform his clients and opposing counsel of his ineligibility to practice. The attorney continued work on a divorce case without submitting a substitution order. He received $6,100 for his services despite his status. In addition, Simons allegedly halted work on his client’s case in May 2006 without following proper procedures. Simons also continued to represent another client in a custody matter when he was ruled inactive. 

It was recommended that Simons be placed on a three-year stayed suspension. The conditions of this suspension included the previous requirement to notify counsel and clients of his status. Furthermore, the attorney was ordered to attend ethics school and submit quarterly reports to the California State Bar’s Office of Probation after initially contacting them within 30 days of the suspension. Simons allegedly did not adhere to any of these conditions.

Simons entered into a pretrial stipulation with the state bar when he received the notice of disciplinary action because disbarment was the only option. 

The attorney was admitted to the California State Bar in 2003 upon graduating from the New College of California School of Law.  

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