On Wednesday, October 4, 2023, the Presiding Disciplinary Judge of the Supreme Court of Arizona issued a final judgment and order in the matter of Francisco Javier Sobampo, a member of the State Bar of Arizona. Sobampo was reprimanded for his conduct in violation of the Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct.

The case is entitled “In the Matter of Francisco Javier Sobampo,” with case no. PDJ 2023-9026.

Respondent conditionally admitted that he violated the Rules of Professional Conduct. The conduct in question involves the Respondent’s representation of a client in a dissolution action, in which he failed to disclose the existence of a vacant lot that was purchased during the marriage. Respondent also filed a complaint against the opposing party, which included inaccurate allegations that the opposing party fraudulently concealed the existence of the property during the dissolution proceedings.

The parties agree that the appropriate sanction for Respondent’s conduct is a reprimand. In determining the sanction, the parties considered the duty violated, the lawyer’s mental state, the actual or potential injury caused by the misconduct, and the existence of aggravating and mitigating factors. The parties also considered the American Bar Association’s Standards for Imposing Lawyer Sanctions, which provide guidance on the appropriate sanction for various types of misconduct.

The agreement notes that the Respondent’s conduct violated his duty to the client, the profession, the legal system, and the public. Respondent’s mental state was negligent, as he failed to review information from the dissolution proceedings before filing the civil suit and failed to promptly take remedial action when receiving the Rule 11 letter from opposing counsel. The actual or potential injury caused by Respondent’s conduct includes harm to the client, the profession, the legal system, and the public, as a suit with non-meritorious allegations was filed, and the proceedings were needlessly protracted.

In aggravation, the parties note that Respondent violated multiple rules, including those related to duties to clients and duties to the system. The parties also note that the Respondent’s conduct caused an adverse or potentially adverse effect on the legal proceeding.

Based on these foregoing matters, the Presiding Disciplinary Judge of the Supreme Court of Arizona decided to reprimand Sobampo. He was also ordered to pay the costs and expenses of the State Bar of Arizona in the amount of $1,200.00 within 30 days.

The Disposition states:

“IT IS ORDERED that Francisco Javier Sobampo, Bar No. 028482, is reprimanded for his conduct in violation of the Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct, as outlined in the consent documents.”

According to avvo.com, Mr. Sobampo is a family attorney in Phoenix, Arizona. He attended the Arizona Summit Law School. He acquired his law license in Arizona in 2011.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.