New Zealand Law Society - One month suspension for Robert John Latton

One month suspension for Robert John Latton

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Auckland barrister Robert John Latton has been suspended for one month commencing on 29 May 2017 by the New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal.

Mr Latton admitted a charge of misconduct before the Tribunal.

This arose in circumstances where his client instructed him to send a letter proposing terms of settlement to the opposing party in litigation. Some weeks later when his client asked about the letter and whether there had been a response, Mr Latton deceived his client. In two emails to the client he represented that he had sent the letter when he had not.

He also backdated a draft letter from a version that had been sent to him by his instructing solicitor, and showed this to the client.

Mr Latton apologised for his actions and undertook to enter into a mentoring arrangement with a senior lawyer for a period of 12 months.

The Tribunal also imposed a censure, fine of $7,000 and ordered Mr Latton to pay costs to the New Zealand Law Society and to reimburse the costs of the hearing.