Complaints, Lawyer Discipline and Public Hearings

 

Citation issued: August 26, 2020

Lubomir Ihor Huculak

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 January 2011 and June 2015, in the course of acting in relation to one or more real estate transactions concerning the properties set out on Schedule “A” (the “Transactions”), you provided legal services or used or permitted the use of your firm’s trust account, or both, in circumstances where you failed to do one or more of the following:

(a)  be on guard against becoming the tool or dupe of an unscrupulous client or other persons;

(b)  make reasonable inquiries prior to acting or continuing to act in the Transactions in the circumstances that were objectively suspicious, including making inquiries in relation to:

i.  your clients or other persons, or both;

ii.  the subject matter and objectives of your retainer; and

iii.  the source of funds;

(c)  make a record of the results of inquiries made; and

(d)  decline to act or continue to act in the Transactions until there was a reasonable basis for believing that the Transactions were legitimate.

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

 

2.  Between approximately February and March 2011, during the course of providing legal services in relation to a financial transaction, you acted contrary to one or more of Rules 3-93, 3-95, 3-97, 3-98, and 3-100 of the Law Society Rules then in force [now Rules 3-100, 3-102, 3-104, 3-105, and 3-107], in relation to one or more of your clients, EK, GK, and EA (AKA “EO”) (the “Clients”), when you failed to do one or more of the following:

(a)  record all necessary information regarding the identity and verification of your Clients, including their business address or telephone number;

(b)  take reasonable steps to verify the identity of one or both of the Clients, either yourself or through an agent; and

(c)  retain a copy of every document used to verify the identity of one or both of the Clients.

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

3.  In approximately July 2013, while acting for one or both of your clients DK and LK, in connection with a real estate matter, you misappropriated, improperly withdrew, or improperly authorized the withdrawal from trust of $4,711.58, when you were not entitled to those funds, contrary to one or both of Rules 3-56 and 3-57 of the Law Society Rules then in force [now Rules 3-64 and 3-65] and your fiduciary duties to your clients.

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