Northern California Record

Friday, December 6, 2019

Calabasas attorney faces suspension, probation over alleged mishandling of 2 immigration cases


By Karen Kidd | Aug 5, 2019


SAN FRANCISCO (Northern California Record) — Longtime Calabasas attorney Daniela Koiman faces suspension and probation following a July 11 California Supreme Court order over failures to perform with competence, release client files and return an unearned fee, according to a recent State Bar of California announcement and court documents.

The Supreme Court handed down a stayed one-year suspension and two years' conditional probation with the first 60 days spent on suspension. Conditions of her probation include passing the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination as previously recommended by the California State Bar Court's Hearing Department. She also was ordered to pay costs.

Her discipline will be effective Aug. 10, according to an announcement recently posted on the state bar's website.

Koiman was admitted to the bar in California on June 6, 1994, according to her profile at the state bar website. She had no prior discipline before the state bar, according to her profile.

Allegations against Koiman stem from complaints in two separate client matters, both immigration cases for which she was hired in January 2012 and April 2016, respectively, according to the stipulation filed with the state bar court in March.

In the older case, Koiman was alleged, among other things, to have ensured her client's removal proceeding was dismissed after his U visa approval and failed to perform legal services with competence, according to the stipulation. Koiman also allegedly failed to return an advanced fee, to render an appropriate accounting and failed to inform her client that she failed to appear at the client's June 2015 hearing and that an in absentia deportation order had been issued, according to the stipulation.

"The client had to hire new counsel and pay $3,800 in additional legal fees to have the deportation proceeding terminated," the stipulation said.

In the other case, Koiman was alleged, among other things, to have failed to properly submit the client's U visa application, intentionally failed to perform legal services with competence, did not promptly release the client's file and failed to render an appropriate accounting, according to the stipulation.

As a result of Koiman's alleged misconduct, the U visa application of the client in the younger case was delayed for two years, the stipulation stated.

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State Bar of CaliforniaCalifornia Supreme CourtState Bar Court of California

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