Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Association, No. 19718.

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtPHILLIPS, , and CELEBREZZE and PECK, Circuit
Citation424 F.2d 478
PartiesDaniel T. TAYLOR, III, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants, v. KENTUCKY STATE BAR ASSOCIATION et al., Defendants-Appellees.
Docket NumberNo. 19718.
Decision Date26 March 1970

424 F.2d 478 (1970)

Daniel T. TAYLOR, III, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants,
v.
KENTUCKY STATE BAR ASSOCIATION et al., Defendants-Appellees.

No. 19718.

United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit.

March 26, 1970.


424 F.2d 479

Morton Stavis, Newark, N. J., William M. Kunstler, Arthur Kinoy, New York City, Neville M. Tucker, Louisville, Ky., on the brief, for appellants.

John A. Fulton, Louisville, Ky., Wood-ward, Hobson & Fulton, Louisville, Ky., on the brief, for appellees.

Before PHILLIPS, Chief Judge, and CELEBREZZE and PECK, Circuit Judges.

CELEBREZZE, Circuit Judge.

This is an appeal from an order of the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky granting the motion of the Kentucky State Bar Association, its President and Director, and three members of its grievance committee to dismiss a complaint filed against them by Daniel T. Taylor III, an attorney admitted to practice before the Court of Appeals of Kentucky, and four of his clients. Jurisdiction was asserted under 28 U.S.C. § 1343(3) and (4)

424 F.2d 480
(1964) for an alleged violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (1964). The District Court held that it had no jurisdiction over the subject matter

The complaint recites that Daniel T. Taylor III is a criminal lawyer who has made a career in the defense of unpopular causes and controversial clients, among them, civil liberties organizations, civil rights activists, the poor, and the disadvantaged. In July, 1968, the Kentucky State Bar Association, pursuant to the appropriate Rules of the Court of Appeals of Kentucky, filed a nine-count charge against Taylor praying that Taylor "be forever disbarred from engaging in the practice of law in Kentucky." Taylor filed an answer to the charge, and in December, 1968, a three-man Trial Committee was convened to conduct hearings into the grievances enumerated in the charge. Since that initial hearing, continuances, postponements, and the initiation of this lawsuit have forestalled further action by the Trial Committee.

On March 17, 1969, Taylor filed his complaint in the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky. The complaint makes two relevant claims. First, the complaint alleges that Section 30.170 of the Kentucky Revised Statutes (the statute empowering the Kentucky Court of Appeals with prescribing and enforcing standards for admission to the Kentucky Bar), the Rules of the Court of Appeals of Kentucky enacted pursuant to section 30.170, and Canons 1, 5, 15, 18, 22, and 44 of the American Bar Association Canons of Professional Ethics (the ones under which Taylor was charged) are unconstitutional. Second, the complaint alleges that the Bar Association proceedings against Taylor were instituted under color of these state statutes, court rules, and canons of ethics; that said proceedings were instituted in bad faith, with no real hope of ultimate success; that said proceedings are calculated to deter, intimidate, harass, and punish Taylor for his association with and representation of persons and organizations advocating controversial ideas, and to prevent Taylor and deter other Kentucky lawyers from representing, in futuro, controversial clients and from advocating their ideas. The complaint prays for the convocation of a three-judge district court to declare the unconstitutionality of the state statutes, court rules, and canons of ethics, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2281 and 2284 (1964), and to issue a permanent injunction against the Bar Association proceedings on the ground that they are intended to have a "chilling effect" on First Amendment activities, 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (1964).

With respect to the Appellants' first cause of action, the District Court held that it failed to raise a "substantial constitutional question." On this basis, the District Court refused to submit the case to a three-judge district court.

A single judge may refuse to convene a three-judge panel "when the claim that a statute is unconstitutional is wholly insubstantial, legally speaking nonexistent." Bailey v. Patterson, 369 U.S. 31, 33, 82 S.Ct. 549, 551, 7 L.Ed.2d 512 (1962). See Ex parte Poresky, 290 U.S. 30, 54 S.Ct. 3, 78 L.Ed. 152 (1933); Ex parte Collins, 277 U.S. 565, 48 S.Ct. 585, 72 L.Ed. 990 (1928); Klein v. Lee, 254 F.2d 188 (7th Cir. 1958). For the reasons stated in the order of the District Court, we agree that the Appellants' challenge of these statutes, court rules, and canons of ethics does not raise a substantial constitutional question...

To continue reading

Request your trial
22 practice notes
  • Morgan v. Rhodes, No. 71-1335.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 15, 1972
    ...Glus v. Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal, 359 U.S. 231, 79 S.Ct. 760, 3 L.Ed.2d 770 (1959); Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478, 480 (6th Cir. 1970)." Honey v. Goodman, 432 F.2d 333, 336 (6th Cir. This fundamental statement of the same principles is found in a unanimous......
  • Getty v. Reed, Nos. 76-1633
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 8, 1977
    ...Judge at the end of his interesting analysis in Collis said: It is interesting to note that in Taylor (v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478 (6th Cir. 1970)), the Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court in ruling that the challenge of the statutes, court rules and canons of e......
  • Freeman & Bass, PA v. State of NJ Com'n of Invest., Civ. A. No. 202-73.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. District of New Jersey
    • June 6, 1973
    ...the Fourteenth Amendment. Plaintiffs thus state a cause of action cognizable under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Ass'n, 424 F. 2d 478 (6th Cir. Plaintiffs also allege a violation of the First Amendment rights of their workmen's compensation clients, an allegation given no r......
  • Honey v. Goodman, No. 20314.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • October 9, 1970
    ...Glus v. Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal, 359 U.S. 231, 79 S.Ct. 760, 3 L.Ed.2d 770 (1959); Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478, 480 (6th Cir. 1970). The complaint states that on January 1, 1970, the Appellants, in their capacities as coordinators of the Kentucky Chapte......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
22 cases
  • Morgan v. Rhodes, No. 71-1335.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 15, 1972
    ...Glus v. Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal, 359 U.S. 231, 79 S.Ct. 760, 3 L.Ed.2d 770 (1959); Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478, 480 (6th Cir. 1970)." Honey v. Goodman, 432 F.2d 333, 336 (6th Cir. This fundamental statement of the same principles is found in a unanimous......
  • Getty v. Reed, Nos. 76-1633
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 8, 1977
    ...Judge at the end of his interesting analysis in Collis said: It is interesting to note that in Taylor (v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478 (6th Cir. 1970)), the Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court in ruling that the challenge of the statutes, court rules and canons of e......
  • Freeman & Bass, PA v. State of NJ Com'n of Invest., Civ. A. No. 202-73.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. District of New Jersey
    • June 6, 1973
    ...the Fourteenth Amendment. Plaintiffs thus state a cause of action cognizable under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Ass'n, 424 F. 2d 478 (6th Cir. Plaintiffs also allege a violation of the First Amendment rights of their workmen's compensation clients, an allegation given no r......
  • Honey v. Goodman, No. 20314.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • October 9, 1970
    ...Glus v. Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal, 359 U.S. 231, 79 S.Ct. 760, 3 L.Ed.2d 770 (1959); Taylor v. Kentucky State Bar Association, 424 F.2d 478, 480 (6th Cir. 1970). The complaint states that on January 1, 1970, the Appellants, in their capacities as coordinators of the Kentucky Chapte......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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