A Speedway attorney with a lengthy disciplinary history has been suspended from the practice of law in Indiana for 90 days, a suspension that will run concurrently with the indefinite suspension he is already under.
The Indiana Supreme Court suspended Brian J. Lutz effective Jan. 16 after Lutz and the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission submitted a Statement of Circumstances and Conditional Agreement for Discipline. In the agreement, Lutz and the commission stipulated that when he was working on six criminal or family law cases, the attorney “generally failed to adequately communicate with his clients, missed several court hearings and conferences, and failed to appropriately advance his clients’ cases or otherwise represent their interests.”
Lutz’s failure to adequately represent his clients led to two show cause proceedings against him, as well as a five-day jail sanction. The Indiana Roll of Attorneys shows four concluded disciplinary actions against Lutz and five pending actions.
According to the Wednesday disciplinary order, Lutz admitted to “severe medical issues” that impaired his legal work for his clients. He is currently serving an indefinite suspension due to a disability in a separate proceeding.
In the instant proceeding, Lutz was found to be in violation of seven Indiana Professional Conduct Rules, including:
- Rule 1.3
- Rules 1.4(a)(2), (3), (4)
- Rule 1.4(b)
- Rule 1.16(a)(2)
- Rule 8.4(d)
Those rules relate to failing to consult with and inform clients about their cases, failing to withdraw from representation due to impairment, engaging in prejudicial conduct and other similar violations.
Thus, the high court imposed a 90-day suspension without automatic reinstatement to run concurrently with Lutz’s ongoing indefinite disability suspension. At the conclusion of the 90-day period, Lutz can petition for reinstatement if he pays the costs of the proceeding, fulfills the duties of a suspended attorney and satisfies the requirements for reinstatement under Indiana Admission and Discipline Rule 23(18). In order to be fully reinstated, he will have to complete the process both for the instant matter and for the disability matter.