Complaints, Lawyer Discipline and Public Hearings

Summary of Decision of the Hearing Panel

Gerald Anthony Gordon

Osoyoos, BC

Called to the bar: May 11, 1982

Written materials: November 5, 2018

Panel: John Waddell, QC, chair; Laura Nashman; Michael Welsh, QC

Decision issued: December 5, 2018 (2018 LSBC 37)

Counsel: Kathleen Bradley for the Law Society; Gerald Anthony Gordon on his own behalf

AGREED FACTS

Gerald Anthony Gordon was in charge of financial management of the firm at which he was a partner, and during that time Gordon failed to remit taxes to the federal and provincial governments as follows:

  • GST and interest due for taxes collected from April 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010;
  • HST and interest due for taxes collected from July 1, 2010 to March 31, 2013;
  • GST and interest due for taxes collected from April 1, 2013 to December 31, 2015; and
  • PST collected from April 1, 2013 to December 31, 2014.

In total, over a period of approximately six-and-one-half years, the arrears amounted to over $328,000 of GST/HST, and over $98,000 of PST. During this time Gordon took partnership draws in excess of his entitlement.

ADMISSION AND DETERMINATION

Gordon conditionally admitted to professional misconduct and agreed to a proposed fine of $12,000. In considering whether to accept the conditional admission and proposed disciplinary action, the hearing panel took into account the large amount of money involved, the protracted length of time involved, the exposure of Gordon’s partner to financial liability and discipline processes, and the deception involved in putting away tax remittance cheques in order to take excessive partner draws.

The panel approved Gordon’s conditional admission of professional misconduct and proposed disciplinary action, both of which had been accepted by the Discipline Committee.

DISCIPLINARY ACTION

The panel ordered that Gordon pay:

  1. a fine of $12,000; and
  2. costs of $750.

2018 LSBC 37 Decision of the Hearing Panel