Attorneys

Victims of attorney theft obtain rewards from fund


YOUNGSTOWN — The Board of Commissioners of the Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection in Ohio recently awarded $415,391 to 11 victims of attorney theft, including four clients of Donald P. Leone, who died in December 2020.

Disbursements are funded through registration fees paid by every Ohio attorney.

A press release from the Board of Commissioners states that four former clients of Leone were reimbursed a combined $57,093 as a result of Leone’s failure to provide the services requested and failure to disburse client funds.

Leone resigned from the practice of law in Ohio, with disciplinary action pending, in May 2020.

The other victims were from Greene, Medina, Morrow and Stark counties.

Leone, of Canfield, had a law office on Market Street.

The Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection, formerly known as the Clients’ Security Fund, was created in 1985 by the Ohio Supreme Court to reimburse victims of attorney theft, embezzlement, or misappropriation.

Ohio has more than 45,000 attorneys engaged in the active practice of law. Less than 1 percent are involved in claims reimbursed by the fund.

Law clients who believe they sustained financial losses resulting from attorney theft, embezzlement, or misappropriation should contact the fund by calling 614.387.9390 or 1.800.231.1680 toll-free in Ohio.

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