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Kentucky Bar Ass'n v. Pridemore

Supreme Court of Kentucky

August 21, 2014

KENTUCKY BAR ASSOCIATION, MOVANT
v.
DANIEL EDWARD PRIDEMORE, RESPONDENT

Released for Publication September 3, 2014.

Page 743

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 744

OPINION

IN SUPREME COURT

OPINION AND ORDER

JOHN D. MINTON JR., CHIEF JUSTICE.

The Board of Governors of the Kentucky Bar Association (KBA) has recommended that Daniel Edward Pridemore be found guilty of six counts of misconduct and be suspended from the practice of law for 30 days.

Pridemore was admitted to the practice of law in the Commonwealth of Kentucky on April 30, 2010; his KBA member number is 93508; his bar roster address is 3565 Lone Oak Road, Suite 3A, Paducah, Kentucky 42003.

Pridemore was hired by Terrell Stacy Harper to represent him in a divorce and child-custody matter in McCracken Family Court. The eventual divorce decree included a domestic violence order against Harper. He paid Pridemore $7,000 to pursue an appeal. Pridemore filed the notice of appeal on October 11, 2012. The Court of Appeals ordered that the case be expedited. Soon thereafter, Harper's ex-wife moved to have the appeal dismissed for procedural noncompliance. No timely response was filed, and the Court of Appeals dismissed the appeal on December 20, 2012.

In January 2013, Harper learned that his appeal had been dismissed. He contacted Pridemore, who assured him that the dismissal was a technical or clerical error and that he would take steps to have the appeal reinstated. Over the next several months, Harper and Pridemore exchanged several emails about the status of the appeal. In April 2013, Pridemore advised Harper that the appeal could not be reinstated.

Pridemore offered to have the domestic violence order modified for no additional fee. In May 2013, Pridemore drafted an agreed order to modify the domestic violence order, and Harper's wife signed the agreed order.

After that, Pridemore did not respond to several communications from Harper and took no further steps to represent Harper. On July 5, 2013, Harper filed a bar complaint against Pridemore.

In October 2013, the Inquiry Commission issued a six-count charge of professional misconduct against Pridemore. The charge alleged that Pridemore violated (1) SCR 3.130-1.3[1] by failing to act with reasonable diligence and promptness in pursuing the appeal; (2) SCR 3.130-1.4(a)(3)[2] by failing to keep Harper informed about his case; (3) SCR 3.130-1.4(a)(4)[3] by failing to promptly comply with Harper's requests for information; (4) SCR 3.130-1.16(d)[4 ...


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