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Kenosha lawyer faces 9-month license suspension

A Kenosha lawyer faces a nine-month license suspension over allegations that he violated more than a dozen attorney-ethics rules.

The Office of Lawyer Regulation filed a complaint on March 25 alleging that Ricardo Perez had broken the state’s attorney-ethics rules 21 times.

Eighteen of the alleged rule violations stemmed from his representation of four clients in personal-injury matters.

Even though the clients had hired Perez, he would fail to respond to their calls or requests for the latest news on their cases and fail to take action on their personal-injury claims, according to the complaint. Perez would also fail to give them their case files when his representation of them ended.

In the case of two clients, the OLR alleges that Perez lied to the clients. In another case, one involving a client who had hired him in December 2015, he told the client he had formally sought her medical records but her treatment provider said in March 2017 that it never received such a request.

In May 2017, Perez emailed the client to tell her he had sent her medical records to the insurer. In fact, though, he had never sent them, according to the complaint.

In August 2017, Perez told the same client he had sent a claim notice to the insurer and that a response was due the next day. However, he never sent the claim notice, according to the OLR.

All four clients filed grievances against him. When the OLR attempted to contact Perez about those actions, he failed to respond, according to the complaint.

Perez’s failure to respond resulted in the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s temporarily suspending his law license in February 201 for failing to cooperate with the OLR when it was investigating the grievances clients had filed against him.

The remaining three counts of alleged misconduct stem from that temporary suspension.

The OLR alleges that, during the suspension, Perez appeared in Milwaukee County Circuit Court in four separate but related traffic cases on the behalf of a single client. Moreover, the OLR alleges that Perez did not tell clients, opposing counsel or the courts that his license had been suspended. When the OLR requested that Perez respond to the allegation that he had practiced law while his licensed was suspended, Perez failed to respond.

The OLR is asking the Wisconsin Supreme Court to suspend Perez’s license for nine months.

Perez could not be reached. The OLR and State Bar of Wisconsin websites do not list a phone number or email address for Perez.

Perez, a former officer with the Wisconsin State Patrol, earned his law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1999 and was admitted to practice law in Wisconsin in 2000. His license has been administratively suspended since October 2018 for failing to pay mandatory bar dues and failing to submit a certification of his trust account to the OLR.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court has not previously publicly disciplined Perez, according to the OLR.


About Erika Strebel, erika.strebel@wislawjournal.com

Erika Strebel is the law beat reporter for the Wisconsin Law Journal and a law school student at UW-Madison. She can be reached at 414-225-1825.

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