One lawyer from Prince Albert was banned from practicing law earlier this year. He has since been granted the right to practice while his related case is under an appeals process. Peter Ambrametz will continue to practice law until there is a court hearing regarding his disbarment. The lawyer made an official appeal after the Law Society of Saskatchewan barred him from practicing law until 2021. The incident which barred Mr. Abrametz from practice has been described as deceitful and disturbing.
The Law Society of Saskatchewan conducted a hearing on January 10th regarding Mr. Abrametz’s unbecoming behavior. The hearing resulted in the lawyer being found guilty of the charges. The Law Society of Saskatchewan is comprised of several esteemed and experienced professionals in the field which make up a regulatory body for other lawyers. The society brought forth allegations against Mr. Abrametz claiming that he had mishandled several files. These included the trust funds of eight different clients. Mr. Abrametz allegedly wrote trust checks to a fictitious entity in order to divert the funds to his own account. He is also charged with maintaining improper records and loaning money to clients in need at incredibly high interest rates.
The lawyer responded to these allegations with a written appeal. In the application, he requested that his right to practice be re-established while the case continues through the process. He argued that the suspension would cause him great financial stress and that an individual would be put out of work as a result. Furthermore, Abrametz made a case for the consequences that this suspension would have on his clients as well. He mentioned that his specialized practice was keeping some clients safe.
This would not have been the first time that Abrametz was put under restrictions by Law Society of Saskatchewan. He was forced to operate under numerous restrictions from 2012 to 2014. Abrametz was constantly supervised by a member of the society and his trust accounts were placed under restrictions. His entire practice was also monitored closely. The court’s recent decision regarding his appeal noted that there haven’t been any new allegations of malpractice since the original controls were implemented. For this reason, they reasoned that Mr. Abrametz should continue practicing under these same restrictions until the case has made its way through the court system.
In his final decision, Justice Robert Leurer wrote, “I agree with the Law Society that there are other lawyers who can assume Mr. Abrametz’s practice, but I do not completely discount the harm to members of the public if there is a need to hand off the files Mr. Abrametz has been handling”. He continued by saying, “This harm includes delay and also expenses as new lawyers are engaged. All of this may also damage the reputation of the profession, particularly if it is later determined that Mr. Abrametz should not have been suspended at all”. Questionable attorney practices have been in the center of the press recently, some of them involving the name of President Donald Trump, like the case against Bayrock Group LLC or Michael Cohen.
Justice Robert Leurer continued to express that the public’s opinion towards this decision would be favorable. Most people understand that the law process includes allowances of further review. Reasonable members of the community will be able to understand how Mr. Abrametz can continue to practice under restrictions even though he is no longer presumed innocent. This reasoning develops from the legal avenue for appeal which Mr. Abrametz has taken full advantage.
Despite filing for appeal already, there are many more documents that Mr. Abrametz must turn into the Law Society of Saskatchewan. He has until the 15th of April to gather these documents and submit them for review. This case is high-profile for the area because Mr. Abrametz has been in practice since 1973 and is a prominent lawyer in Saskatchewan.