Complaints, Lawyer Discipline and Public Hearings

 

Citation issued:  December 12, 2018

Florence Esther Louie Yen

Citations are authorized by the Law Society of BC's Discipline Committee and list allegations against a lawyer that will be considered at a discipline hearing. Please note that allegations in a citation are unproven until a discipline hearing panel has determined their validity.

Nature of conduct to be inquired into:

1.  Between approximately May 20, 2015 and February 23, 2017, on behalf of your client PL, you used or permitted the use of your firm’s trust accounts to either receive approximately $9,949,688.69 USD and $1,274,764.96 CAD, or disburse approximately $9,949,493.69 USD and $1,274,764.96 CAD, or you did both, as set out in Schedule "A" (the "Transactions"), and failed to do one or more of the following in connection with the Transactions:

(a)  provide any substantial legal services;

(b)  make reasonable inquiries about the circumstances, including, but not limited to:

i.  the subject matter and objectives of your retainer;

ii. the source of the funds;

iii. the purpose of the payment of the funds; or

iv.  the reason for the payment of the funds to or through your firm’s trust accounts; and

v.  make a record of the results of any inquiries about the circumstances.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct, pursuant to section 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.

2.  Between approximately May 20, 2015 and June 15, 2015, you received funds into your firm’s trust accounts on behalf of your client PL, but failed to record the source of the funds, contrary to Rule 3-60(a)(ii) of the Law Society Rules [now Rule 3-68(a)(ii)], in relation to one or more of the following transactions:

(a)  $500,000.00 USD, received as $604,770.16 CAD, on or about May 20, 2015;

(b)  $1,700,000.00 USD, received on or about June 10, 2015; and

(c)  $1,849,971.20 USD, received on or about June 15, 2015.

This conduct constitutes professional misconduct or a breach of the Act or Rules, pursuant to section 38(4) of the Legal Profession Act.