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Rule 76. Grounds for Sanctions, Sanctions, and Implementation

Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of the Supreme Court of ArizonaEffective: January 1, 2022

Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of the Supreme Court of Arizona (Refs & Annos)
VI. Unauthorized Practice of Law (Refs & Annos)
Effective: January 1, 2022
A.R.S. Sup.Ct.Rules, Rule 76
Rule 76. Grounds for Sanctions, Sanctions, and Implementation
(a) Grounds for Sanctions. Grounds for sanctions include the following:
1. Any act found to constitute the unauthorized practice of law pursuant to Rule 31.2.
2. Willful disobedience or violation of a court ruling or order requiring the individual, entity, or alternative business structure to do or forbear to do an act connected with the unauthorized practice of law.
3. Failure to respond promptly to any inquiry or request from unauthorized practice of law counsel, superior court, or this court, made pursuant to these rules for information relevant to complaints or matters under investigation concerning conduct of a respondent, or failure to assert the ground for refusing to do so. Upon such inquiry or request for relevant information from counsel, the superior court, or this court, every respondent shall:
A. furnish in writing, or orally if requested, a full and complete response to inquiries and questions:
B. permit inspection and copying of his or her business records, files and accounts;
C. furnish copies of requested records, files and accounts;
D. furnish written releases or authorizations where needed to obtain access to documents or information in the possession of third parties; and
E. comply with discovery conducted pursuant to these rules.
4. Evasion of service or any other refusal to cooperate with officials and staff of the state bar acting in the course of their duties.
5. Violation of any cease and desist order or injunction imposed during an unauthorized practice of law proceeding.
(b) Sanctions and Dispositions.
1. Consent Agreement. Respondent and unauthorized practice of law counsel may enter into a “Consent Agreement” that states respondent agrees to cease and desist from engaging in acts found to be the unauthorized practice of law, to refund fees collected, to pay costs and expenses, to make appropriate restitution, to the entry of an injunction or finding of contempt, or any other lawful sanction agreed to by the parties.
2. Cease and Desist Order. The superior court may enter an order for a respondent to immediately cease and desist from conduct that constitutes engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. After entry of a cease and desist order or judgment, and service thereof upon the respondent, respondent shall:
A. notify existing customers, opposing counsel or opposing parties, if not represented by counsel, of such sanctions:
B. return to all customers in pending matters any documents or other property to which they are entitled, including their files; and
C. cease use of any reference to titles or descriptions prohibited in the order or judgment on all advertising, business cards, letterhead, and Internet sites, including social media.
3. Injunction. The superior court, at any stage in an unauthorized practice of law proceeding, may enjoin a respondent from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law and order a respondent immediately to cease and desist such conduct. An injunction or order to cease and desist may be issued without proof of actual damages to any person.
4. Civil or Criminal Contempt. The superior court may issue a civil or criminal contempt citation and determine if the respondent is guilty of contempt and, by order, prescribe the sanction, including assessment of costs, expenses and reasonable attorney fees, and the imposition of any other sanction authorized by law.
5. Restitution. In the event actual damages are shown, restitution may be ordered to any individual for money, property, or other items of value received and retained by a respondent.
6. Civil Penalty. The superior court may order a civil penalty up to $25,000 against every respondent upon whom another sanction is imposed. Civil penalties against an alternative business structure shall be deposited in the Alternative Business Structure Fund. Civil fines against a legal paraprofessional shall be deposited in the fund established by the supreme court for that program. Civil penalties against all others shall be payable to the state bar.
7. Costs and expenses. Costs, expenses, and attorney's fees relating to the proceedings shall be assessed against every respondent upon whom another sanction is imposed, unless waived by the state bar. Assessment shall be included in the order or judgment.
(c) Implementation of Orders and Judgments. Orders or judgments of the superior court in unauthorized practice of law matters shall be effective thirty days after entry, unless another date is specified.

Credits

Added Jan. 15, 2003, effective July 1, 2003. Amended Aug. 27, 2020, effective Jan. 1, 2021; Aug. 25, 2021, effective Jan. 1, 2022.
17A Pt. 2 A. R. S. Sup. Ct. Rules, Rule 76, AZ ST S CT Rule 76
State Court Rules are current with amendments received and effective through 12/15/22. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through 12/15/22.
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