JEFFERSON CITY – Longtime Phoenix, Arizona attorney Jack B. Schiffman has been reciprocally suspended following a Missouri Supreme Court order after he was suspended in Arizona over continuing education requirements and later placed on probation for allegedly mishandling a real estate case.
In its order, the Missouri Supreme Court indefinitely suspended Schiffman with no application for reinstatement to be entertained for one year from the date of the Missouri court's order. The Missouri court also ordered Schiffman to pay costs.
Schiffman failed to respond to a show cause order the Missouri court issued in March.
Schiffman, a bankruptcy attorney in Phoenix and admitted to the bar in Arizona Nov. 27, 1981, was administratively suspended in that state in January of last year for violating mandatory continuing legal education rules in Arizona.
Schiffman was placed on two years of conditional probation, according to an order handed down in October by an Arizona Supreme Court presiding disciplinary judge. The order followed a consent discipline agreement reached between Schiffman and senior bar counsel in Arizona in which Schiffman admitted to violating professional conduct rules.
The violated professional conducts rules were those regarding competence, scope of representation, diligence, communication, safekeeping client property, respond to lawful demand for information, trust account and failure to furnish information from bar counsel, according to the consent discipline agreement.
Allegations against Schiffman stemmed from his representation of a client in a real estate matter for which he'd been retained in July 2012 and in which he was supposed to assert Arizona’s anti-deficiency statue for home equity loans used for construction as an affirmative defense.
"Thereafter, Mr. Schiffman failed to competently and diligently represent his client by not researching the issues, failing to serve a disclosure statement, failing to respond to motions for summary judgment, and conduct discovery," the consent discipline agreement said. "He further failed to adequately communicate with the client and failed to inform them of a significant judgment entered against them and any post-judgment rights, failed to respond to the arbitrator, failed to adhere to the scope of services, failed to safekeep client funds, and failed to respond to the State Bar inquiries and requests for information."
The client sued Schiffman in 2015 for malpractice and obtained a settlement, according to the consent discipline agreement.