In re Holliday

Decision Date28 February 2020
Docket NumberS20Y0067,S20Y0066,S20Y0065
Citation308 Ga. 216,839 S.E.2d 518
CourtGeorgia Supreme Court
Parties In the MATTER OF Julianne Wesley HOLLIDAY (three cases).

Paula J. Frederick, General Counsel State Bar, William D. NeSmith III, Deputy General Counsel State Bar, Jenny K. Mittelman, Wolanda R. Shelton, Assistant General Counsel State Bar, for State Bar of Georgia.

Per Curiam.

These disciplinary matters are before this Court on three notices of discipline, each of which seeks the disbarment of Julianne Wesley Holliday (State Bar No. 362498), who has been a member of the Bar since 1998. The State Bar attempted to serve Holliday by mail at the address listed with the State Bar, and subsequently at the same address personally, but a staff investigator was unable to perfect personal service. The State Bar then properly served Holliday by publication, pursuant to Bar Rule 4-203.1 (b) (3) (ii). Holliday failed to file a Notice of Rejection. Therefore, she is in default, has waived her right to an evidentiary hearing, and is subject to such discipline as may be determined by this Court. See Bar Rule 4-208.1 (b).

The facts, as deemed admitted by virtue of Holliday's default, show that, as to S20Y0065, Holliday entered into a representation agreement with, and accepted a fee from, a client to represent him as to some traffic citations. Although aware of the limited time available for filing a challenge to the suspension of the client's driver's license, and despite repeated prompting from the client, Holliday failed to file the required information, despite asserting that she had done so, and the client's license was suspended. The client repeatedly attempted to contact Holliday but was ignored until Holliday sent the client a message through social media informing him that he could seek reinstatement of his license by attending a DUI traffic school; the client subsequently learned from the Department of Driver Services that reinstatement of his license could not be pursued for one year. The client terminated Holliday and hired new counsel, but Holliday has not refunded the client's fee, despite asserting that she would do so. Additionally, there was evidence that during the relevant time Holliday served as a public defender and thus was not authorized to represent private clients for a fee.

By this conduct, the Bar asserts that Holliday has violated, inter alia, Rules 1.2 (a), 1.3, 1.4 (a) (3) and (4), 1.16 (d), 3.2, and 8.4 (a) (4) of the Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct. The maximum sanction for a violation of Rules 1.4, 1.16, and 3.2 is a public reprimand, while the maximum sanction for a violation of Rules 1.2, 1.3, and 8.4 (a) (4) is disbarment. In mitigation as to the appropriate level of discipline, the State Bar noted only Holliday's absence of prior discipline; in aggravation, the Bar noted Holliday's failure to respond to the disciplinary proceedings, her failure to respond to her client, her abandonment of her client's case, her dishonesty toward her client, and her substantial experience in the practice of law.

As to S20Y0066, Holliday was hired by a client to represent him in a habeas corpus action. Despite being provided by the client with a draft petition and being made aware of the client's concerns regarding preserving, via prompt filing, his right to subsequently seek federal habeas relief, Holliday failed to file the requested petition, and the client had to file the petition pro se to preserve his rights. The client's family attempted to contact Holliday, but were told first that she was ill and then that she had moved out of state. Since that time, neither the client nor his family have heard from Holliday. By this conduct, the Bar asserts that Holliday violated, inter alia, Rules 1.2 (a), 1.3, 1.4 (a) (3) and (4), 1.16 (d), and 3.2. In mitigation, the Bar considered Holliday's lack of prior discipline; in aggravation, it considered her failure to respond to the disciplinary proceedings,...

To continue reading

Request your trial
2 cases
  • Department of Public Safety v. Ragsdale
    • United States
    • Georgia Supreme Court
    • 28 Febrero 2020
  • In re Boyd
    • United States
    • Georgia Supreme Court
    • 10 Agosto 2021
    ...(a), (b), (c), (d), (e), (h), and (i). Noting that this Court has disbarred attorneys facing similar charges, see In the Matter of Holliday , 308 Ga. 216, 839 S.E.2d 518 (2020) (disbarring attorney for violations of a variety of Rules including Rules 1.2, 1.3, and 8.4 (a) (4) in multiple cl......
2 books & journal articles
  • Review of the Year 2021 in Family Law: Getting Back to Normal
    • United States
    • ABA General Library Family Law Quarterly No. 54-4, January 2021
    • 1 Diciembre 2021
    ...Akron Bar Ass’n v. Fortado, 152 N.E.3d 196 (Ohio 2020). 148. In re Nelson, 295 So. 3d 922 (La. 2020) (per curiam). 149. In re Holliday, 839 S.E.2d 518 (Ga. 2020). 150. Watts v. Goetz, 311 So. 3d 253, 257 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2020). Published in Family Law Quarterly , Volume 54, Number 4, 20......
  • Legal Ethics
    • United States
    • Mercer University School of Law Mercer Law Reviews No. 72-1, September 2020
    • Invalid date
    ...Prof'l Conduct R. 3.2 (2020).39. Noriega-Allen, 308 Ga. at 398-99, 841 S.E.2d at 1.40. Id. at 399, 841 S.E.2d at 1-2.41. In re Holliday, 308 Ga. 216, 216, 839 S.E.2d 518, 520 (2020).42. Id. at 216-17, 839 S.E.2d at 520. 43. Id. at 217, 839 S.E.2d at 520.44. Id. at 217-18, 839 S.E.2d at 520-......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT