On May 22, 2014, the Grievance Committee of the North Carolina State Bar reprimanded Thomas D. Blue, Jr. (“Blue”), for violations of the North Carolina Rules of Professional Conduct.
In August 2013, a new assistant reconciling the firm’s trust account discovered a bookkeeping error made by Blue’s assistant in November 2010. The error caused a client to receive an over-disbursement of entrusted funds in January 2012.
The Grievance Committee reprimanded Blue for failure to adequately supervise his assistant, a violation of Rule 5.3(b). Blue also violated Rule 1.15-3(d) by failing to perform his duty to ensure the firm’s trust account was properly maintained.
Although the misconduct is not excused, the Grievance Committee found mitigating factors. After the error was discovered, Blue properly self-reported to the State Bar on behalf of his firm. Thereafter, the firm ensured reimbursement of the trust account and developed corrected procedures. For these reasons, referral to the Disciplinary Hearing Commission was not appropriate in this case.
View the full disciplinary order below.