On Friday, June 23, 2023, the State of Minnesota Supreme Court suspended attorney Julie L. Bruggeman for unprofessional conduct.

The case is entitled “In the matter of Julie L. Bruggeman” with case no. A23-0671.

The charges cited Minessota Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1, 1.3, 1.4(a)(2)–(4), 1.4(b), 1.5(c), 1.7(a)(2), 1.15(c)(4), 1.16(d),3.2, 3.3(a)(1), 4.1, 8.1(a), 8.4(c), 8.4(d). 

On May 5, 2023, the Director of the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility in Minnesota filed a petition for disciplinary action against the respondent alleging various instances of professional misconduct, including representing clients with a conflict of interest, providing incompetent representation, neglecting client matters, failing to communicate, forging a client’s signature, making false statements, failing to withdraw from representation in a timely manner, and fabricating documents. The parties reached a stipulation for discipline, in which Bruggeman admitted to the allegations and waived her rights to answer. The recommended discipline was an indefinite suspension with no right to petition for reinstatement for 90 days.

The report states:

“The disciplinary matter involves two counts of misconduct. The first count involves, Bruggeman in her six-year representation of Mervy D. Larson and his father, Mervy L. Larson (“the Larsons”) in a personal injury matter. Bruggeman was alleged to have failed to competently and diligently pursue the Larsons’ case, failed to obtain their informed consent to a potential conflict of interest, and failed to comply with the Larsons’ requests for information about the status of the matter.

Moreover, Bruggeman made false statements to Mervyn D. about the progress of the case and blamed the insurance company for delays, which were later found to be untrue. Bruggeman did little work on the case despite receiving necessary information and medical records from the Larsons.”

The report continues:

“The Stipulation for Dispensing with Panel Proceedings and for Filing Petition for Disciplinary Action, dated May 4, 2023, was entered into by the Director of the Office of Lawyers Responsibility and Bruggeman. It was stipulated that Bruggeman understands that the matter will be of public record upon the filing of the stipulation and she expressly preserves each and every other right under the Rules on Lawyers Professional Responsibility (RLPR) to contest the allegations of the petition. The stipulation also underscored Bruggeman’s consent to the stipulation.

Based on Bruggeman’s multiple violations of the rules of professional conduct, the Director filed its Petition for Disciplinary Action upon the parties’ agreement.”

The Supreme Court of Minnesota reviewed the case, approved the stipulation, and ordered Bruggeman’s indefinite suspension effective 14 days from the date of the order, with reinstatement possible after 90 days upon meeting certain conditions, including passing a professional responsibility examination and fulfilling continuing legal education requirements. Bruggeman was also required to comply with suspension notification obligations and pay $900 in costs.

The Disposition states:

“IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT: Respondent Julie L. Bruggeman is indefinitely suspended from the practice 1. of law, effective 14 days from the date of this order, with no right to petition for reinstatement for 90 days.”

As of today, Ms. Julie L. Bruggeman is listed as the County Attorney of the Mahnomen County Attorney’s Office. She attended Mitchell Hamline School of Law, graduating in 2002. Bruggeman has been admitted to practice in Minnesota since 2002. Her online bio can be found on LinkedIn.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.