On Thursday, September 1, 2022, the Supreme Court of Florida ordered the revocation of Lakeland attorney Susan Jane Best’s membership in The Florida Bar, with leave to seek readmission after five years amid pending disciplinary charges for misappropriation of client funds.
The case, titled In Re: Petition for Disciplinary Revocation of Susan Jane Best, was brought by Susan Jane Best under case no. SC22-797.
The Petition states that:
“Petitioner had shortages in her trust account ranging from $48,000.00 to approximately $50,000.00 resulting from respondent’s misappropriation of client funds. Petitioner made numerous online transfers to her law office operating account, where the funds were spent on operating expenses. Petitioner deposited $48,000.00 of personal funds to cover the shortage in her trust account.”
The Petition continues:
Petitioner contends that granting this petition will not adversely affect the public interest, the integrity of the courts, or the confidence of the public in the legal profession. Further, petitioner contends that granting his petition will not hinder the administration of justice.
Petitioner kno0wingly and voluntarily submitted her petition with full knowledge of its effect. She also agreed to reimburse the Client Security Fund for the costs and expenses incurred in her disciplinary cases. Moreover, she agreed to eliminate all indicia of her status as an attorney on email, social media, telephone listings, stationery, business cards, office signs, or any other indicia of petitioner’s status as an attorney.
Accordingly, the Supreme Court of Florida ruled for the Petitioner and granted her petition.
The Order reads:
“The uncontested petition for disciplinary revocation, as provided by Rule3-7.12, Rules Regulating the Florida Bar, with leave to seek readmission after five years, is granted subject to the continuing jurisdiction of this Court. . . the disciplinary revocation shall be effective thirty days from the date of this order so that petitioner can close out his practice and protect the interests of existing clients. If petitioner notifies this Court in writing that he is no longer practicing and does not need the thirty days to protect existing clients, this Court will enter an order making the revocation effective immediately. . .”
Costs were assessed against the Respondent in the amount of $1,467.29.
According to The Florida Bar, Ms. Susan Jane Best graduated from the University of Florida, Fredric G. Levin College of Law in 1989. Prior to this revocation, Best practices in Lakeland Florida where she maintained her law firm, Best Law, PLLC. She had been licensed in Florida.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.