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Justices find attorney practicing law after resignation

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The Indiana Supreme Court has fined Brian L. Nehrig $1,000 and extended his ban from practice after finding he committed the unauthorized practice of law. Nehrig resigned from the bar in 2007, and he was sentenced in 2010 after pleading guilty to mail fraud.

The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission charged Nehrig with engaging in a pattern of fraudulent practices in representing a mortgage company in foreclosure actions, including his alteration of sheriff's deeds. Nehrig worked as a foreclosure attorney doing work for Citifinancial in 2005 and 2006. Nehrig sometimes set up side deals with friends and associates to buy properties at sheriff’s sales, and he did not send Citifinancial the profits. Citifinancial lost $66,000 from Nehrig’s scheme, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigations.

The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission began investigating Nehrig, and he was initially suspended, but later tendered his resignation in August 2007. The FBI charged him with mail fraud in October 2009, to which he pleaded guilty. He received three years of probation.

But after his resignation, he rented space at the law office of John R. McManus Jr. and was included in a staff photo on the firm’s website. Nehrig’s primary focus was facilitating “short sales” of real estate, but he performed other work outside of the office, including tax issues. He also opened a checking account in the name of “Brian Nehrig d/b/a/ McManus & Associates” without McManus’ knowledge.

“In violation of his resignation from the bar, Nehrig worked in a law office and he engaged in activities that crossed the line into the practice of law, some of which were in the very field—real estate transactions—in which the charges leading to his resignation occurred. By using a bank account with the d/b/a of a law firm and directing third parties to make checks out for him using a law firm name, Nehrig held himself out as an attorney,” Chief Justice Brent Dickson wrote in the Sept. 7 disciplinary order.

“Nehrig's violation of the order accepting his resignation was on-going, pervasive, and deliberate, and it exposed the public to the danger of misconduct by Nehrig, who has yet to prove his remorse, rehabilitation, and fitness to practice law through the reinstatement process. See Admis. Disc. R. 23(4)(b). Under these circumstances, the Court concludes that a substantial fine and an extension of his removal from practice is warranted.”

Nehrig has 60 days from September 7 to pay the fine.

McManus was also disciplined as a result his assistance “albeit indirectly” in Nehrig’s unauthorized practice of law. The justices instituted a public reprimand. McManus said he didn’t believe Nehrig was crossing the line into the practice of law in his short sale work and didn’t know of Nehrig’s improper outside activities. He wanted to help Nehrig make a living after his resignation, and McManus has no disciplinary history.

 

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  1. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  2. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  3. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  4. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  5. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

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