On Friday, December 8, 2023, the Supreme Court of Louisiana issued a ruling placing attorney Albert A. Bensabat III on probation for two years. Bensabat had been charged by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel with violating Rules of Professional Conduct related to a 2018 DWI conviction and trust account errors.

The case is entitled “In the Matter of Albert A. Bensabat III,” with case no. 2023-B-00620.

The charges cited Louisiana Rules of Professional Conduct 8.4(a), 8.4(b), 1.15(a), 1.15(f), 8.4(a) and 8.4(b) which states:

Violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

Commission of a criminal act reflecting adversely on the lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer.

Safekeeping property of clients of third persons.

A lawyer shall subject all client accounts to a reconciliation process at least quarterly.

The charges stem from two separate incidents. In April 2018, Bensabat was arrested for DWI and later pled guilty to first offense DWI in November 2018. He self-reported the conviction to the ODC. Additionally, in April 2018 the ODC received notice from Bensabat’s bank of overdrafts in his client’s trust account. Bensabat acknowledged to the ODC that he did not reconcile his trust account on at least a quarterly basis.

Bensabat stipulated the formal charges and admitted to violating rules related to committing a criminal act, reconciliation of trust accounts, and safekeeping of client funds. While disciplinary proceedings were ongoing, Bensabat completed the Louisiana State Bar Association’s Trust Accounting School in July 2019.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court suspended Bensabat from practicing law for three years, but deferred the entire suspension and placed him on probation for two years. As a condition of his probation, Bensabat must refrain from driving any vehicle not equipped with an ignition interlock device to detect alcohol consumption and submit monthly reports of the device to the ODC. He was also ordered to pay all costs and expenses associated with the disciplinary case.

According to avvo.com, Mr. Bensabat III is an attorney in Hammond, Louisiana. He acquired his law license in Louisiana in 1974.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.