VIRGINIA:



BEFORE THE FIFTH DISTRICT SECTION I SUBCOMMITTEE

OF THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR



IN THE MATTER OF JOHN WAYNE BEVIS, ESQ.

VSB Docket No. 02-051-1404



AGREED DISPOSITION

Pursuant to Part Six, §IV, ¶13(G)(1)(c) of the Rules of Virginia Supreme Court, the Virginia State Bar, by Senior Assistant Bar Counsel Noel D. Sengel, and the Respondent, John Wayne Bevis, Esq., hereby enter into an Agreed Disposition arising out of the above-referenced matter.

Both parties affirm that the proposed Subcommittee Determination of a Public Reprimand with Terms, a true copy of which is attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference, reflects the stipulated facts, violations, and disposition for the above-referenced matter.

Respondent understands that should the Subcommittee accept this agreed disposition by unanimous vote, the Subcommittee Determination will be signed by the Chair or Chair Designate and thereafter mailed without the necessity of any hearing or further notice to the parties. Further, it is understood and agreed by the parties hereto that should the Subcommittee refuse the agreed disposition neither party shall be bound by the stipulations or findings contained herein and this matter shall be forthwith scheduled for a hearing by the full Committee.


SEEN AND AGREED TO:

THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR


________________________

Noel D. Sengel
Assistant Bar Counsel



________________________

John Wayne Bevis
Respondent




SUBCOMMITTEE ACTION

Pursuant to Part Six, §IV, ¶13(G)(1)(c) of the Rules of Virginia Supreme Court, the duly convened subcommittee of the Fifth District Committee Section I of the Virginia State Bar hereby accepts the Agreed Disposition in this matter.

Date: __________ _________________________________

Date: __________ _________________________________

Date: __________ _________________________________



VIRGINIA:


BEFORE THE FIFTH DISTRICT SECTION I SUBCOMMITTEE

OF THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR


IN THE MATTER OF JOHN WAYNE BEVIS, ESQ.

VSB Docket No. 02-051-1404



SUBCOMMITTEE DETERMINATION

PUBLIC REPRIMAND WITH TERMS

On the 4th day of February, 2003, a meeting in this matter was held before a duly convened a subcommittee of the Fifth District Committee Section I consisting of Richard J. Ruddy, Jr., Esq., Stephen A. Wannall, and Sean P. Kelly, Esq., presiding.

Pursuant to Part 6, §IV, ¶13(G)(1)(c) of the Rules of Virginia Supreme Court, a subcommittee of the Fifth District Committee Section I of the Virginia State Bar hereby serves upon the Respondent the following Public Reprimand with Terms.

I. FINDINGS OF FACT


1. At all times relevant hereto the Respondent, John Wayne Bevis, Esq. (hereinafter the Respondent), has been an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

2. In June of 2000, the Complainant, Thomas R. Early, went to the closing on the sale of his home and learned that the buyer had failed to obtain the funds he needed to buy the property. In October of 2000, Mr. Early hired the respondent to sue the buyer for breach of contract. Mr. Early signed a fee agreement, agreeing to pay the Respondent one-third of any money recovered.

3. In January of 2001, Mr. Early called the Respondent's office to speak to the Respondent about his case. He had not heard from the Respondent since he hired him in

October of 2000. The Respondent did not return his call. Mr. Early left several more messages but the Respondent still did not call him. In mid-February of 2001, Mr. Early sent the Respondent an email, which the Respondent did not answer. In May of 2001, after numerous more emails to which the Respondent did not respond, Mr. Early requested that the Respondent return his case file to him. He still did not hear from the Respondent.

4. In August of 2001, Mr. Early filed his complaint with the Virginia State Bar. On September 17, and October 3, 2001, the Bar's Intake Office sent letters to the Respondent, asking him to respond to Mr. Early's complaint. The Respondent did not reply to Intake's letters. He

also did not respond to the opening letter sent to him on November 21, 2001 by Assistant Bar Counsel.

5. Virginia State Bar Investigator Robert K. Smith interviewed the Respondent on August 6, 2002. The Respondent informed Investigator Smith that the primary reason he had not contacted Mr. Early or responded to Mr. Early's messages was that there was still quite a bit of time before the statute of limitations ran out on filing the suit in Mr. Early's case. He also claimed that a staff person in his office, who had since been fired, had failed to pass on Mr.

Early's emails and phone messages to him. On August 6, 2002, the Respondent told Investigator Smith that he would contact Mr. Early to discuss what Mr. Early wanted to do in his case. By the end of August, the Respondent still had not contacted Mr. Early.

II. NATURE OF MISCONDUCT

The Subcommittee finds that the following Disciplinary Rules have been violated:


DR 6-101. Competence and Promptness.

(B) A lawyer shall attend promptly to matters undertaken for a client until completed or until the lawyer has properly and completely withdrawn from representing the client.

(C) A lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about matters in which the lawyer's services are being rendered.


RULE 1.3 Diligence

(a) A lawyer shall act with reasonable diligence and promptness in representing a client.


RULE 1.4 Communication

(a) A lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and promptly comply with reasonable requests for information.

(b) A lawyer shall explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit the client to make informed decisions regarding the representation.



III. PUBLIC REPRIMAND WITH TERMS

Accordingly, it is the decision of the Subcommittee to offer the Respondent an opportunity to comply with certain terms and conditions, compliance with which by May 1, 2003, shall be a predicate for the disposition of this complaint by imposition of a Public Reprimand with Terms. The terms and conditions which shall be met by May 1, 2003 are:

1. The Respondent shall institute and maintain a docket control system which shall ensure that he reviews the status of all pending matters periodically, and remind him in advance of key deadlines and other obligations. The Respondent shall institute and maintain a written office policy relating to regular and informative client communication. This policy shall include provisions for providing the client with written copies of all documentation relating to the representation, engaging in regular meetings either in person or by telephone to discuss the progress of the case and to answer client inquiries. Both the docket control system and the communication policy shall be implemented immediately. The Respondent shall provide the Assistant Bar Counsel handling this matter with a detailed written description of both the docket control system and communication policy, and shall certify in writing under oath that he is using such systems in his office.

2. The Respondent shall complete four (4) hours of continuing legal education in the areas of ethics and/or law office management. His Continuing Legal Education attendance obligation set forth in this paragraph shall not be applied toward his Mandatory Continuing Legal Education requirement in Virginia or any other jurisdictions in which he may be licensed to practice law. He shall certify his compliance with the terms set forth in this paragraph by delivering a fully and properly executed Virginia MCLE Board Certification of Attendance Forms (Form 2) to Noel D. Sengel, Senior Assistant Bar Counsel, at 100 North Pitt Street, Suite 310, Alexandria, Virginia 22314, promptly following his attendance of such CLE program(s).

Upon satisfactory proof that the above-noted terms and conditions have been met, a Public Reprimand with Terms shall then be imposed. If, however, the terms and conditions have not be met by May 1, 2003, this matter shall be certified to the Virginia State Bar Disciplinary Board upon an agreed stipulation of facts and misconduct as the facts and misconduct are set forth herein for the sole purpose of the imposition of a sanction deemed appropriate by the Virginia State Bar Disciplinary Board.

 

FIFTH DISTRICT SECTION I SUBCOMMITTEE

OF THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR



By __________________________________

Chair Designate





CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE



I certify that I have this _____ day of _______________________, 2003, mailed a true and correct copy of the Subcommittee Determination (Public Reprimand with Terms) by CERTIFIED MAIL, RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED, to the Respondent, John Wayne Bevis, Esq., at 10521 Judicial Dr., Suite 120, Fairfax, VA 22030, his last address of record with the Virginia State Bar, and by hand to Noel D. Sengel, Esq., Senior Assistant Bar Counsel, at 100 North Pitt Street, Suite 310, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3133.



_______________________________________

Noel D. Sengel