ISBA awards money for former attorney's actions

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A South Bend man is receiving $15,000 from the Indiana State Bar Association to compensate for losses he suffered from the dishonest acts of a former attorney.

Darious E. Easton received the money as a result of actions by former attorney Paul Bruno Kusbach, who resigned in 2002. Kusbach was sentenced in April 2004 to federal prison for four years and nine months for stealing money from clients; he was ordered to pay $1.2 million in restitution to 26 separate clients.

This was the maximum amount that could be awarded by the Clients' Financial Assistance Fund, which has been around since 1962 and helps uphold the integrity of the Indiana Legal Profession by covering some losses suffered by clients of dishonest Hoosier attorneys. Money was last awarded in March to three individuals - each award was less than $5,000, meaning the board of governors did not have to approve the amounts.

Fund Committee Chair Jon Pactor, a sole practitioner in Indianapolis, describes this fund as a method not very well known throughout the Indiana legal community.

"These acts are often theft-related and don't happen very often so aren't on attorneys' radar screens," he said. "This is a way to help restore dignity to the bar or collectively say, 'This is wrong,' and it's a last effort to get compensation for someone. We recognize our professional obligation to do that."

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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues