find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Struck-off lawyer stole from clients

Struck-off lawyer stole from clients

A Queensland lawyer has been banned from practice for a string of offences that include misappropriating client funds and charging excessive legal fees.

The Legal Services Commissioner (LSC) brought 15 charges against Chandrika Achala Devi Urban, who was admitted as a Queensland solicitor in 1997. They include: illegally transferring funds from her trust account, misappropriating trust funds, borrowing $50,000 from a client, gross overcharging and failure to comply with numerous notices in the course of investigations by the Queensland Law Society and LSC.

Urban’s name has been removed from the roll in Queensland and she has been ordered to pay the LSC’s legal costs, fixed at $2500, as well as $6185 compensation to a client whose money was misappropriated.

Queensland Civil and Administrative Appeals Tribunal president Justice Alan Wilson described the charges as “wide ranging and serious”.

One client was charged almost $120,000 for legal services, which were later assessed to be worth around $54,000. The Tribunal also heard that Urban misappropriated $6185 from another client; that sum was to be held on trust against fees for a medical assessment and report, but no medical examination was ever undertaken.

Urban also borrowed $50,000 from a client, drafting a loan agreement but failing to suggest the individual obtain independent legal advice. The loan was to be repaid within six months, but she only made three payments totalling $14,000. The client said the incident had “aggravated his depressive condition.”

“[Urban] has committed serious breaches of the honesty and trust that go to the heart of a solicitor’s professional obligations to clients,” said Justice Wilson in his decision.

Urban did not file a response, appear at hearings, file submissions or ever inform the LSC or Law Society of her whereabouts.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Struck-off lawyer stole from clients
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Oct 19 2017
‘Ego status’ compelled ex-lawyer to defraud $2.97m, court told
Debarred lawyer John Gordon Bradfield told an NSW District Court that he was driven by “ego status...
Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA), Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legislation,
Oct 19 2017
ALA welcomes ‘tough’ Qld manslaughter laws
The Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has welcomed Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legisl...
Legal podcasts, tune in, microphone
Oct 19 2017
Legal podcasts you have to tune in to right now
The rise of the internet has hailed in a new dawn for storytelling. Here’s our top pick of podcast...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...