LOS ANGELES — The State Bar Court of California recently suspended Marilyn Sue Scheer, a Chatsworth attorney, after an investigation into her practices revealed that she had accepted advanced fees in loan modification services in jurisdictions that she was not eligible to practice law in.
According to the March 31 decision, Scheer allegedly entered into four loan modification service agreements with separate clients from December 2009 to April 2010. For these services, Scheer collected $4,000, $3,500, $4,500 and $6,000 in retainer fees, which is against the California Rules of Professional Conduct. The agreements were drafted for services to be performed in New Jersey, Washington and Maryland, states where Scheer is not entitled to practice law.
Due to Scheer’s multiple acts of misconduct, the harm it caused her clients and her prior suspension order, the court decided that discipline was warranted.
The state bar took into account mitigating factors to lessen the severity of the sentence. Scheer provided several letters that attested to her good character. The attorney also cooperated with the state bar’s investigation, though she did show indifference to the misconduct by claiming that she had not violated any rules.
Scheer’s suspension is indefinite or until she pays $120,000 in restitution to her clients. She will be required to complete ethics school and pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam. Scheer also has to inform any current clients and opposing counsel of her suspension and is prohibited from accepting any new clients.
Scheer was admitted to the California State Bar in 1987. She is a graduate of the Drake University School of Law in Iowa. She was previously suspended in 2014 for misconduct in loan modification services.