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Keen v. Kentucky Bar Association

Supreme Court of Kentucky

October 23, 2014

CHARLES DAVID KEEN, KBA Member No. 84885, MOVANT
v.
KENTUCKY BAR ASSOCIATION, RESPONDENT

JOHN D. MINTON, JR., CHIEF JUSTICE. All sitting. All concur.

IN SUPREME COURT

OPINION AND ORDER

John D. Minton, Jr. CHIEF JUSTICE

Charles David Keen[1] (Keen) moves this Court for a public reprimand for his admitted violations of SCR 3.130-1.3, SCR 3.130-1.4(a)(3), SCR 3.130-1.16(d), SCR 3.130-3.2 in one Charge; and SCR 3.130-1.3, SCR 3.130-1.4(a)(4), and SCR 3.130-1.16(d) in another Charge. The Kentucky Bar Association (KBA) states no objection to the proposed discipline, which was negotiated pursuant to SCR 3.480(2). Finding a public reprimand to be the appropriate discipline for his misconduct, we grant Keen's motion.

I. BACKGROUND.

The Inquiry Commission charged Keen with violating the aforementioned Supreme Court Rules stemming from two client interactions. Prior to these Charges, we publicly reprimanded Keen in Keen v. Kentucky Bar Association, 386 S.W.3d 737 (Ky. 2012) for depositing client funds into his operating account, for failing to respond to his client's requests for information, and for causing his client to pay more child support due to his failure to promptly handle the client's legal matter. In his prior discipline, Keen was ordered bye this Court to not receive any Charges for one year. If he failed to comply with that condition, a thirty day suspension would be imposed. During that one-year period Keen received the two Charges which are the subject of this matter. We determined that Keen violated the terms of that 2012 order and imposed a thirty-day suspension on September 18, 2014.

His two most recent Charges stem from the following sets of facts:

A. KBA Charge 21432.

On October 17, 2011, Bryan Carson contacted Keen to pursue a divorce. On October 20, 2011, Carson retained Keen to represent him and paid Keen $3,000. Carson's wife filed for divorce the same day with service being made on Carson on October 24, 2011. Carson spoke to Keen on October 24, 2011 and provided a copy of the divorce petition to Keen. Carson was required to respond within twenty days after the service of the summons. Carson emailed Keen on November 15, 2011 to

Page 608

check the status of the pleadings. Carson again emailed Keen on November 29, 2011 advising Keen that he should figure out why no Answer had been filed. Keen's response email simply stated, " Sure." Keen never filed a response on Carson's behalf.

On January 6, 2012, Carson called Keen. Keen indicated he needed to review Carson's file and would call him on Monday. Keen never called Carson. On January 19, 2012, Carson sent Keen a termination letter asking Keen to return Carson's entire client file and reimburse the $3,000 retainer fee within ten days from receipt of Carson's letter.

At approximately the same time, Carson filed a Bar Complaint against Keen. On August 2, 2013, the KBA's charge followed. Upon receipt of the Charge, ...


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