On Friday, May 17, 2024, The Florida Bar filed a Petition for Approval of Conditional Guilty Plea and Consent Judgment concerning attorney Richard Peskin to the Supreme Court of Florida.

The case is entitled “The Florida Bar v. Richard Peskin,” with case no. 2022-00,155(2B).

The petition stems from a disciplinary matter Peskin faces relating to issues that arose from his membership with the New York Bar in 2018. Peskin conditionally agreed to plead guilty to the charges filed against him in New York which included misuse of his IOLA client trust account, entering into unauthorized business transactions with a client, failing to properly maintain accounting records, and making false statements in attorney registration forms.

As part of his conditional guilty plea, Peskin agreed to a public reprimand, completion of continuing legal education courses in trust account management, client accounting compliance within six months, and payment of costs to The Florida Bar. The plea agreement indicates Peskin has been cooperative with the disciplinary proceedings and has no prior disciplinary record during his over 30 years of legal practice.

The issues involved alleged improper withdrawals, commingling of personal and client funds, and poor bookkeeping practices related to Peskin’s management of his IOLA trust account as a solo practitioner. A referee appointed in New York sustained 18 misconduct charges against Peskin but found the violations to be due to negligence rather than intentional acts, and that no clients suffered harm from Peskin’s actions. The New York court ultimately issued Peskin a public censure.

In its petition, The Florida Bar asserts it has approved Peskin’s conditional guilty plea in accordance with the Rules Regulating the Florida Bar and requests the Florida Supreme Court also approve the plea and impose the agreed-upon discipline.

The petition states:

“WHEREFORE, The Florida Bar respectfully requests that the Conditional Guilty Plea for Consent Judgment be accepted, the proposed discipline be imposed, and the bar be awarded costs.”

According to avvo.com, Mr. Peskin is an attorney in East Moriches, New York. He attended the New York University School of Law. He acquired his law license in Florida in 1989.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.