On Thursday, November 2, 2023, the Florida Bar filed before the Supreme Court of Florida a petition for contempt and order to show cause against attorney Mercedes Gonzalez Hale. According to the petition, Hale failed to comply with an order from the court suspending her law license.
The case is entitled “The Florida Bar v. Mercedes Gonzalez Hale,” with case number 2024-90,012(OSC).
The bar alleges that Hale failed to comply with the terms of a previous court order suspending her from practice. She was ordered to notify clients, opposing counsel, and any courts or bars of which she is a member of her suspension. Additionally, she was instructed to submit an affidavit to the Florida Bar listing who received notice and remove any indications that she was an active attorney, such as email signatures or business cards.
However, the Florida Bar alleges in its November petition that Ms. Hale did not fulfill these requirements. The bar notified Hale of the conditions associated with her suspension on June 21, 2023, via letter and email to her record bar address and record bar email. However, the letter was returned to the sender and marked as not deliverable as addressed, and the email was undeliverable.
Due to Hale’s non-compliance, the Florida Bar requested the Supreme Court hold her in contempt and extend her suspension by 91 days. They also asked the court to order her to satisfy the directives of the June order before petitioning to return to practicing law.
The petition for contempt states:
“The bar respectfully requests this Court enter an order directing respondent, Mercedes Gonzalez Hale, to show cause why she should not be held in contempt and be suspended for 91 days, comply with the terms of this Court’s order in SC2023-0560 prior to petitioning for reinstatement, and assess costs in the amount of $1,250.00 to The Florida Bar.”
According to avvo.com, Ms. Hale is a litigation attorney in Florida. She attended the University of Florida, Fredric G. Levin College of Law, graduating in 1991. She acquired her law license in Florida in 1992.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.