Oxnard attorney disbarred by default over alleged ethical violations

By Karen Kidd | Apr 12, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO — Oxnard attorney M. Francesca Hannan faces disbarment by default following a State Bar of California recommendation after being charged with six ethical violations.

Allegations against Hannan included multiple counts of failure to comply with a court order that she pay almost $5,500 in judicial sanctions and about $10,000 in court-ordered defense attorney fees and costs, according to the seven-page decision and order of involuntary inactive enrollment issued March by the state bar court.

The state bar's decision is pending final action by the California Supreme Court, an appeal before the state bar's review department or expiration of time in which parties may request further review within the state bar court.

Hannan's recommended discipline was among the dispositions filed earlier this month by the state bar court's hearing department for March. The state bar's decision and order of involuntary inactive enrollment were made available earlier this week.

Hannan failed to participate in person or via counsel and state bar's decision, and the order for disbarment was entered by default. In such cases, in which an attorney fails to participate in a California State Bar disciplinary proceeding despite adequate notice and opportunity, the bar invokes Rule 5.85, which provides the procedure for the state bar to recommend an attorney’s disbarment.

Hannan was admitted to the California bar Jan. 5, 1989, according to her profile at the state bar website. Hannan had had no prior discipline before the state bar, according to her profile and the state bar's decision and order.

About a week after missing the trial date in December, Hannan filed a motion asking that her default be set aside, according to the decision and order. "She asserted she was unable to attend the trial because she had significant respiratory problems and her physician advised her to stay indoors and not to travel," the decision and order said.

"The court denied the motion because, 1) [Hannan] failed to provide a declaration from her treating physician, 2) [Hannan] failed to explain her failure to file her pretrial statement and exhibit list, and 3) [Hannan]'s motion failed to comply with the Rules of Procedure of the State Bar of California."

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