Oregon Abuse Lawyer Faces Ethics Violations For Misleading His Clients Over Settlements

The Associated Press and local media outlets are reporting that the Oregon State Bar has filed an ethics complaint against one of the region’s leading abuse attorneys, Dan Gatti.

The bar charges that Gatti knowingly misled clients as to how $1.6 million in settlements was divided among accusers. A formal hearing is scheduled for this summer.

Alan Gustafson at Statesman Journal reports:

“According to the complaint, Gatti failed to obtain ‘informed consent’ from his clients prior to cutting lump-sum settlements with the archdiocese and the state to resolve their abuse claims.

“The complaint also alleges that Gatti made ‘false representations’ to his clients about the settlements …

“It says Gatti stated in a November 2008 letter to the Client Assistance Office that he had provided [an accuser] with ‘a factual and truthful accounting’ for the disbursement of the settlements in his case …

“[In fact,] ‘These representations were false, misleading and material and [Gatti] knew they were false, misleading and material when he made them,’ the complaint says.”

The state bar has disciplined Gatti before. In 2000, according to the article, “the state Supreme Court reprimanded him for posing as a chiropractor to obtain information about medical reviews done on behalf of an insurance company.”