Board of Overseers of the Bar
The Board and its Mission
The Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar was created by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court in 1978 to govern the conduct of lawyers as officers of the Court. The Board is an independent agency under the jurisdiction of the Court.
The mission of the Board of Overseers of the Bar is to encourage and promote competent and ethical practice by members of the Maine Bar, and to make these standards known to members of the public, so that they have confidence in the legal profession in Maine. The Board accomplishes its mission on several fronts including attorney registration, continuing legal education requirements, ethical guidance, and attorney regulation. [Read more]
Supreme Judicial Court Adopts Revised Maine Bar Rules
In October 2011, the Board of Overseers of the Bar established the Committee to Review Maine’s Disciplinary Enforcement Rules. The committee, comprising Board members and staff, attorney and public members of the Grievance Commission, disciplinary defense counsel, and respondent attorneys, compared the Maine Bar Rules and the ABA Model Rules for Lawyer Disciplinary Enforcement. Generally, the Model Rules are a “one size fits all” approach, whereas the Maine Rules were designed to work in a state with a smaller bar.
The committee created and revised drafts of proposed Maine Bar Rules after several presentations to the Maine State Bar Association and to the Board. In June 2014, the committee submitted the proposed rules to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, which, in November 2014, held a public hearing on the rules and adopted them largely as presented by the committee.
The revised Maine Bar Rules, effective July 1, 2015, incorporate many aspects of the previous edition of the Maine Bar Rules, while incorporating many practices of the ABA Model Rules in an effort to improve and modernize Maine’s rules. [Maine Bar Rules]
Task Force to Study Bar Demographics Issues Report
In June 2014, the Board of Overseers of the Bar Task Force to Study Maine's Bar Demographics issued its Report and Recommendations to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. In August of 2013, Task Force members were asked to examine the challenges facing the Maine bar with respect to the dearth of new lawyers working and residing in rural counties and the tsunami of retiring lawyers predicted within the next decade. Recognizing that the challenges are not unique to Maine, Task Force members were also asked to explore how other jurisdictions were responding to these concerns (click here to view articles and resources). The Task Force acknowledges that there is no “one-size fits all” solution to address the all of the issues and concerns addressed in its report. However, Task Force members identified several challenges and opportunities that will require action by legal organizations, the Court and the Legislature. Detailed information regarding the recommendations may be reviewed in Task Force's report.
Ethics Helpline for Registered Maine Attorneys
The Board of Overseers of the Bar provides assistance to Maine attorneys through its "Ethics Helpline" on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays - 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. To speak with one of the Board's staff attorneys, call the Board's office at 207-623-1122. [Read more]
The In Memoriam page is dedicated to honoring those members of the Maine Bar who have passed away in recent years. When available, links to full obituaries and news articles are also accessible. Click here to view the In Memoriam page.
Upcoming CLE Presentations by Bar Counsel
|8/4/2015||Brown Bag CLE "Suggested Conduct Mistakes New Lawyers Should Avoid"||MSBA - The New Lawyers Section||Rockland District Court||J. Scott Davis|
|9/3/2015||Ethics Program||MSBA - Litigation Seminar - Hilton Garden Inn||Freeport||J. Scott Davis, Alan P. Kelley|
|9/18/2015||Family Law Institute||Maine State Bar Association||Augusta Civic Center||Aria Eee|
|8/14/2015||9:00 AM||Donald F. Brown, Esq.||Capital Judicial Center - Courtroom #6|
|8/20/2015||9:00 AM||David J. Van Dyke, Esq.||Cumberland County Superior Court - Courtroom #8|
|9/16/2015||9:00 AM||Seth T. Carey, Esq.||Cumberland County Superior Court - Courtroom #8|
Recent Decisions & Orders
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|7/22/2015||Margaret P. Shalhoob, Esq.||Grievance Commission||Findings||Rejection of Stipulated Sanction|
|7/21/2015||Suzanne Dwyer-Jones||Grievance Commission||Reinstatement Recommended||Reinstatement Recommended|
|7/20/2015||Steven A. Juskewitch, Esq.||Grievance Commission||Reprimand||Reporting or threatening to report misconduct to an administrative authority solely to obtain an advantage in a civil matter, dealing with an unrepresented person, Conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice|
|7/20/2015||William B. Entwisle, Esq.||Grievance Commission||Reprimand||Disobeying the obligations or rules of a tribunal, Failure to provide timely discovery to the accused, Misconduct|
|7/20/2015||Carletta M. Bassano, Esq.||Grievance Commission||Reprimand||Disobeying the obligations or rules of a tribunal, Failure to provide timely discovery to the accused, Failure to properly supervise subordinate attorneys, Conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice|
- Grievance Complaints
- Fee Disputes
- Attorney Registration
- Maine Bar Rules
- Maine Rules of Professional Conduct
- Ethics Opinions
- Bar Counsel Notes
- Ethics Helpline
- Registration Statistics
- New Admittee
- Custody of Attorney Wills
- Attorney Address Change Form (PDF - 80KB)
- Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection