JEFFERSON CITY – Phoenix attorney Don W. Cartier has been reciprocally suspended following a Feb. 4 Missouri Supreme Court order and his suspension last year in Arizona for allegedly forging his client's name to a court document.
The Missouri Supreme Court indefinitely suspended Cartier indefinitely with no application for reinstatement to be entertained for two years from the date of the court's order and until he has been reinstated to practice in Arizona.
The Missouri court also ordered Cartier to pay all costs in the disciplinary proceeding against him.
Cartier was suspended for three years for allegedly signing his client’s name to a court filing without his client’s consent, according to an announcement issued last May by the State Bar of Arizona.
"In a family law case, Cartier filed an amended petition to establish legal decision-making and parenting time," the Arizona Bar's announcement said. "Cartier knowingly signed his client's name in cursive on the pleading under penalty of perjury without his client's knowledge or consent."
Two years of probation are to follow Cartier's reinstatement in Arizona, where he also was ordered to participate in the state bar's member assistance program and law office management assistance program, according to the announcement.
Cartier also was ordered to pay costs and expenses.
The suspension announced in May followed a six-month-and-a-day suspension upheld earlier in the year by the Arizona Supreme Court, according to a bar announcement last February.
"The suspension stemmed from his misconduct in disclosing privileged information, mismanaging his trust account and misrepresenting his level of legal experience," the bar's February announcement said.
In spring 2018, the Arizona Bar began an investigation after an overdraft notice on Cartier's client trust account.
"The handwritten, Excel and QuickBooks trust account ledgers that were later submitted were found to be inaccurate and incomplete and did not maintain minimum standards," the February announcement said.
"The hearing panel found that throughout the disciplinary hearing, Cartier was rarely credible, repeatedly evasive, ignored questions and frequently attempted to interject testimony that was not responsive to questions," the February announcement said.