State ex rel. Counsel for Discipline of the Neb. Supreme Court v. Panick, S-21-709.

CourtSupreme Court of Nebraska
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM.
Citation311 Neb. 627,973 N.W.2d 710
Parties STATE of Nebraska EX REL. COUNSEL FOR DISCIPLINE OF the NEBRASKA SUPREME COURT, Relator, v. Heather C. PANICK, Respondent.
Docket NumberS-21-709.
Decision Date20 May 2022

311 Neb. 627
973 N.W.2d 710

Heather C. PANICK, Respondent.

No. S-21-709.

Supreme Court of Nebraska.

Filed May 20, 2022

Per Curiam.

973 N.W.2d 712
311 Neb. 628


The issue in this attorney reciprocal discipline case is the appropriate sanction to be imposed. The State Bar of Texas suspended the respondent, Heather C. Panick, from the practice of law for 2 years. The relator, the Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska Supreme Court, moved for reciprocal discipline. We grant the motion for reciprocal discipline and impose a 2-year suspension, retroactive to commencement of the Texas suspension.


The record in this case is limited. It is composed of the motion for reciprocal discipline, this court's order to show cause, and the parties’ responses to that order.

The respondent was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Texas. Later, on August 21, 2017, she was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Nebraska.

On July 14, 2021, the State Bar of Texas issued an "Agreed Judgment of Active Suspension." The discipline arose out of the respondent's "engag[ing] in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation" while serving as voluntary treasurer for a youth sports club. The State Bar of Texas found that the respondent violated Texas Disciplinary Rule of Professional Conduct 8.04(a)(3), which is the equivalent of Neb. Ct. R. of Prof. Cond. § 3-508.4(c) (rev. 2016). It suspended the respondent from the practice of law in Texas for 2 years beginning on September 1, 2021, and ending on August 31, 2023. The State Bar of Texas further ordered the respondent to complete an additional 10 hours of continuing legal education in the area of trust accounts (3 hours), fiduciary duties (3 hours), handling client funds (3 hours), and ethics (1 hour).

The respondent provided a self-report of her suspension to the relator. The relator then filed a motion for reciprocal discipline against the respondent.

311 Neb. 629

This court issued an order to show cause as to why we should not impose reciprocal discipline. In response, the relator requested "a disciplinary sanction warranted by the facts" but made no particular recommendation.

The respondent labeled her response to the show cause order as confidential. She requested discipline less severe than the Texas discipline. The respondent suggested probation in lieu of suspension, reprimand by the court, reprimand by the Disciplinary Review Board, or suspension for a period less than 1 year. Her unsworn response indicates that she had personal issues at the time of her misconduct, which we do not detail here.

After the parties were notified that the case was scheduled for oral argument on March 31, the respondent arranged to appear for argument via videoconferencing. The day prior to oral argument, the respondent filed a "Motion for Leave to File Supplemental Statement in Lieu of Testimony." The next day, following argument, we overruled the motion. Neither the respondent nor anyone acting on her behalf appeared for argument.


The basic issues in a disciplinary proceeding against an attorney are whether

973 N.W.2d 713

discipline should be imposed and, if so, the type of discipline appropriate under the...

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