On Thursday, February 1, 2024, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals imposed a one-year-and-one-day suspension on attorney Duncan Kenner Brent based on reciprocal discipline from the state of Virginia.

The case is entitled “In the Matter of Duncan K. Brent,” with case no. 23-BG-0764.

According to court records, Brent had initially been suspended on an interim basis in D.C. on December 7, 2023.  The Virginia State Bar Disciplinary Board had previously suspended Brent for failing to comply with subpoenas and fully cooperate with their investigation into claims that he neglected a legal matter, causing a client’s claims to be dismissed. Brent had also been accused of failing to properly handle liens and communicate with clients in multiple cases.

The suspensions stem from Brent’s representation of a client in Virginia, where he failed to diligently pursue the matter and inform the client of its status, resulting in the case being unable to be refiled due to statute of limitations issues.

In their order, the D.C. Court of Appeals found that substantially different discipline from Virginia was warranted given Brent’s repeated failures to cooperate with disciplinary investigations. The court noted that in D.C., an attorney typically must demonstrate fitness to practice law again before reinstatement following such noncooperation. As a result, Brent must not only gain reinstatement in Virginia but also prove his fitness to practice to regain his license in the District of Columbia.

The Disposition states:

“ORDERED that we impose substantially different reciprocal discipline and Duncan K. Brent is hereby suspended from the practice of law in the District of Columbia for one year and one day with reinstatement conditioned upon a showing of fitness and his reinstatement in Virginia.”

According to avvo.com, Mr. Brent acquired his law license in the District of Columbia in 1996.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.