In Attorney Disciplinary Action, Trial Court Lacked Subject Matter Jurisdiction, But Ordered Sanctions.

Attorney Disciplinary Action A member of the State Bar sought to vacate a stipulation she had entered with the State Bar regarding two attorney disciplinary actions against her. The State Bar filed a special motion to strike under Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16 [antiSLAPP statute], which the superior court granted, along with $2,575.04 in sanctions against the lawyer. The trial court determined a protected activity was involved, and the lawyer could not prevail on the merits because the trial court lacked jurisdiction. The appellate court reversed, stating that “in California, the inherent judicial power of the superior court does not extend to attorney disciplinary actions. That power is exclusively held by the Supreme Court and the State Bar, acting as its administrative arm.” Barry v. The State Bar of California  (Cal. App. Second, Div. 2; August 21, 2013) 218 Cal.App.4th 1435.

About Mark Mellor

Mr. Mellor obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree from Cornell University in 1988. While at Cornell he was a member of Cornell University’s National Debate and Forensics Team, repeatedly recognized as an exceptional debater and individual public speaker throughout the country. Mr. Mellor obtained his Juris Doctorate from Southwestern University School of Law in 1992. He was admitted to both the California and the District of Columbia Bars and has been practicing law for over 18 years in both state and federal courts, including the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Mellor started his own Real Estate and Business Litigation Practice in 2001 and has had three published opinions in the California Courts of Appeal since that time. Mr. Mellor is a past chair of the Executive Committee for the Litigation Section of the State Bar of California and was chair in (2007-2008); vice-chair (2006-2007); treasurer (2005-2006); secretary (2004-2005) and Executive Committee member (2002-2004). He also assists with the State Bar’s Real Estate Section Committee in California. He has special interests in real estate and business litigation involving loan modifications, foreclosures, mechanic’s liens, construction defects, business contracts, business entity formation, and technology.
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