On December 5, 2022, the Supreme Court of the State of Massachusetts denied the Petition for the reinstatement of Boston attorney Valeriano Diviacchi over the case of misconduct. This case is entitled “In the Matter of Valeriano Diviacchi” brought by the Board of Overseers. Case No. SJC-13241.
The charges cited Rules of Professional Conduct 1.5 (f), 1.1, 3.3 (a) (1), 1.5 (a) which states:
By entering into a contingent fee agreement that included provisions not contained in Form A or B without explaining these provisions to the client and without obtaining her informed consent, confirmed in writing.
By refusing to further the client’s lawful objective of attempting to halt the foreclosure, a goal that he knew was important to the client, because doing so would risk harm to the predatory lending counterclaim which he hoped would be the source of his fee, by refusing to meet and talk with the client despite her begging, by refusing to participate in settlement discussions, and by unilaterally limiting his representation despite describing himself as ‘counsel of record for all purposes’ in his Federal court appearance.
Knowingly making false statements of material fact to both the Federal court and the [Boston Municipal Court.
By claiming in the Federal court and the BMC that the client owed him approximately $96,000 in attorney’s fees, where no contingency on which to ground such recovery had occurred and where the attorney-client relationship had effectively ended well before the sale of the house, a transaction in which Diviacchi did not participate in any event.
The Rules of Professional Conduct can be found here.
In 2018, the respondent already failed his initial petition for reinstatement. During the process of the petition, he objected to providing any certain information required by the reinstatement questionnaire. He argued that requiring him to produce certain financial information constitutes unlawful justice. The Hearing Committee of the Board denied the petition on the grounds that Diviacchi had not carried his “burden of demonstrating his Moral qualifications, competency and learning the law required for admission to practice law. Hence, a second petition was filed in court.
The filing states:
“Divacchi thereafter filed his second petition for reinstatement, which also was transmitted to the board. A hearing committee held a hearing and issued a report recommending that reinstatement be denied, in part because the committee was “not persuaded that anything of consequence has changed since the petitioner’s suspension and since the denial of his first petition for reinstatement.
The filing continues:
“In the end, Diviacchi failed to carry his heavy burden to establish that “he has redeemed himself and become a person proper to be held out by the court to the public as trustworthy.'” Matter of Leo, 484 Mass. at 1051, quoting Matter of Dawkins, 432 Mass. at 1010-1011. We need not belabor the evidence before the hearing committee. Suffice it to say that after considering the misconduct underlying the suspension, Diviacchi’s own testimony, character references, and other evidence of Diviacchi’s activities since his suspension, the hearing committee found that nothing of consequence had changed since Diviacchi’s suspension or since the denial of his first petition for reinstatement. Before this court, Diviacchi makes virtually no effort to show that the single justice erred in determining that the hearing committee’s findings were supported by substantial evidence, or that the hearing committee’s conclusion, adopted by the board, and accepted by the single justice, that he is currently fit to practice law was an error. The bare assertion is no substitute for evidence.”
According to the Court, the single justice’s decision denying reinstatement is amply supported by the record. Giving due deference to the board’s recommendation, the court concluded that the single justice did not err or abuse his discretion in denying reinstatement. The Court denied the second Petition for Reinstatement.
As of today, Mr. Diviachhi is listed on the website of the law firm Diviacchi Law Office as a practicing attorney. His info can be found on Linkedin. Diviacchi practices in Boston, Massachusetts. Diviacchi graduated from Harvard Law School in 1988.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.