On Thursday, January 12, 2023, the District of Columbia Office of the Disciplinary Counsel, through a letter to attorney Shayan Davoudi, admonished the latter for unauthorized practice in the State of Virginia.
The case is entitled “In the matter of Shayan Davoudi, Esq.,” with case no. 1030563.
Prohibit a lawyer from practicing law in a jurisdiction in violation of the regulations or law of that jurisdiction.
Requires a lawyer to inform the client and interested third parties in writing that the lawyer is not admitted in Virginia and identify the jurisdiction where the lawyer is admitted.
Permits a lawyer authorized to practice and in good standing elsewhere to represent a client in Virginia on a temporary and occasional basis if the lawyer tells the client in writing that he is not admitted in Virginia before performing legal services for the client and either (i) the lawyer associates with a Virginia lawyer who participates in the representation, or (2 ) the lawyer is authorized by the tribunal to represent the client or reasonably expects to be authorized.
Prohibits a lawyer from knowingly disobeying the standing rules of a tribunal.
Allegedly, the respondent represented a client in Virginia where the former isn’t admitted to practice and without being authorized to appear. The respondent made two appearances before the state court in Virginia without being accompanied by a Virginia lawyer. In the said letter, the Office of the Disciplinary Counsel informed the respondent about his violations.
The filing states:
“You made two appearances before the Virginia state court without being accompanied by a Virginia lawyer or having one participate in the representation or sponsor you for pro hac vice admission. Your first appearance was at a scheduling conference on April 5, 2019. Your second appearance was at T.L.’s eviction hearing on April 19, 2019. Before the hearing, you twice attempted to file a pro hac vice application and counterclaim for fraud and unjust enrichment without a Virginia sponsoring attorney. hearings did not comply with pro hac vice rules. You knew these filings and your appearance at the hearings did not comply with pro hac vice rules.”
The filing continues:
“You never took steps yourself to find a Virginia lawyer to sponsor your admission pro hac vice, supervise you, or otherwise participate in the representation. You relied on the office manager at DMV to find a Virginia lawyer to sponsor you. You did not inform opposing counsel or the court orally or in writing that you were not admitted to practice in Virginia. You only informed your client in writing that you were not admitted to Virginia almost two months after you began working on her case and only three days before you first appeared in court on her behalf.”
The District of Columbia Office of the Disciplinary Counsel believes that the appropriate sanction for the respondent, based on the factual findings and the above-mentioned rules of professional conduct, is an admonition.
The Disposition states:
“This office has completed its investigation of the above-referenced matter. We find that your conduct reflected a disregard for certain ethical standards under the District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct (the Rules). We are, therefore, issuing you this Informal Admonition pursuant to D.C. Bar R. XI, SS 3, 6, and 8.”
Mr. Davoudi is listed as an Immigration Lawyer at HIAS. He attended the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law. graduating in 2014. He practices in Washington, District of Columbia. He is licensed in the District of Columbia. His info can be found on Linkedin.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.