New Zealand Law Society - Lawyers Complaints Service: Order not to employ

Lawyers Complaints Service: Order not to employ

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No lawyer or law firm is to employ Terry Ann Shanks, the New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal has ordered.

A former employee of a law firm, Ms Shanks admitted misappropriation from her firm’s trust account. She fraudulently obtained $10,671 via 16 transactions and used a variety of means to take the money including manipulating third party invoices and emails purporting to be from clients.

Ms Shanks did not appear at the hearing. The Tribunal made an order that no practitioner or incorporated firm employ her in connection with the practitioner’s or incorporated firm’s practice so long as the order remains in force.

The Tribunal also made a compensation order, requiring Ms Shanks to reimburse the firm $5,280. In making this order, the Tribunal took into account that the firm had repaid all the clients and Ms Shanks had repaid the firm some of the money she had fraudulently obtained.

In addition she was ordered to pay $5,413 Law Society costs and reimburse the costs of the hearing.

Publication of the name of the law firm was suppressed.

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