Schwartz, Michael David—118966

Decisions

To view a decision against this individual, click one of the decisions below.

Control of practice—16 August 2016

Control of practice—14 August 2015

Prosecution—14 May 2015


Decision - control of practice

Outcome: Condition

Outcome date: 16 August 2016

Published date: 15 September 2016

Firm details

Firm or organisation at time of matters giving rise to outcome

Name: The Sethi Partnership Solicitors

Address(es):

The Barn House, 38 Meadow Way, Ruislip, Middlesex, HA4 8TB

Firm ID: 78533

Outcome details

This outcome was reached by SRA decision.

Decision details

Michael David Schwartz is subject to Regulation 3 of the SRA Practising Regulations 2011.

Mr Schwartz's practising certificate for 2015/2016 is subject to the following conditions which are necessary, reasonable and proportionate in the public interest:

  1. Mr Schwartz may act as a solicitor, only as an employee whose role has first been approved by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
  2. Mr Schwartz is not to be a manager or owner of an authorised body.
  3. Mr Schwartz shall not hold, receive or have access to client money, or act as a signatory to any client or office account, or have the power to authorise payments in or out of any client or office account or any transfers from any client or office account.
  4. Mr Schwartz shall immediately inform any actual or prospective employer of these conditions and the reasons for them.

In these conditions the definitions are as defined in the SRA Handbook Glossary 2012.

Reasons/basis

The above conditions are considered to be necessary in the public interest and reasonable and proportionate having regard to the purposes set out in Regulation 7 of the SRA Practising Regulations 2011 and the regulatory objectives and principles governing regulatory activities as contained in section 28 of the Legal Services Act 2007.

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Decision - control of practice

Outcome: Condition

Outcome date: 14 August 2015

Published date: 21 September 2015

Firm details

Firm or organisation at time of matters giving rise to outcome

Name: The Sethi Partnership Solicitors

Address(es):

The Barn House, 38 Meadow Way, Ruislip, Middlesex, HA4 8TB

Firm ID: 78533

Outcome details

This outcome was reached by SRA decision.

Decision details

Mr Michael David Schwartz's current practising certificate has been made subject to the following conditions pursuant to Regulation 7 of the SRA Practising Regulations 2011:

  1. Mr Schwartz shall act as a solicitor only in employment, the arrangements for which have been approved by the SRA.
  2. Mr Schwartz is not to be a recognised sole practitioner, manager or owner of an authorised body.
  3. Mr Schwartz shall not hold, receive or have access to client money, or act as a signatory to any client or office account, or have the power to authorise payments in or out of any client or office account or any transfers from any client or office account.
  4. Mr Schwartz shall immediately inform any actual or prospective employer of these conditions and the reasons for them.

In these conditions the definitions are as defined in the SRA Handbook Glossary 2012.

Reasons/basis

On 24 November 2014 the SRA raised the following allegations against Mr Schwartz:

  1. Whilst he was employed as a consultant by "The Sethi Partnership Solicitors" from 20 December 2012 to 1 July 2013 he failed to pay client money received on account of costs into the firm's client account in breach of Rule 14.1 of the SRA Accounts Rules 2011 and in breach of SRA Principles 2, 4, 5, 6 and 10.
  2. On 24 July 2013 Mr Schwartz was arrested and subsequently charged with an offence of causing the transmission of an image/sound from prison contrary to Section 40 of the Prison Act 1952. Although he was subsequently acquitted, he failed to notify the SRA of his arrest and charge at the time in breach of Outcome 10.3 and SRA Principle 7. In view of the above and other suspected misconduct, including trading as an authorised sole practitioner in or around 2012, the above conditions have been imposed on Mr Schwartz's current practising certificate.

The above conditions are considered to be necessary in the public interest and reasonable and proportionate having regard to the purposes set out in Regulation 7 of the SRA Practising Regulations 2011 and the regulatory objectives and principles governing regulatory activities as contained in section 28 of the Legal Services Act 2007.

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Decision - prosecution

Outcome: Referral to Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal

Outcome date: 14 May 2015

Published date: 16 March 2016

Firm details

No detail provided

Outcome details

Reasons/basis

Outcome of SDT Hearing

This notification relates to a Decision to prosecute before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal. This is an independent Tribunal which reaches its own decision after considering all the evidence, including any evidence put forward by the Respondent. The Tribunal had certified that there was a case to answer.

The matter was heard on 8 and 9 September 2016.

The Tribunal ordered that Mr Schwartz be suspended from practice as a solicitor for a period of 5 years from the 9 September 2016, but that the suspension be suspended for 5 years from the same date subject to compliance with the following restrictions imposed by the Tribunal on the Respondent’s practice as a solicitor. During the five year period of suspension the Respondent may not:

  1. Practise as a sole practitioner or sole manager or sole owner of an authorised or recognised body;
  2. Be a partner or member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), Legal Disciplinary Practice (LDP), or Alternative Business Structure (ABS) or other authorised or recognised body;
  3. Be a Compliance Officer for Legal Practice or a Compliance Officer for Finance and Administration;
  4. Hold client money;
  5. Be a signatory on any client account;
  6. Work as a solicitor other than in employment approved by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

The Respondent shall immediately inform any actual or prospective employer of these conditions and the reasons for them.

There be liberty to either party to apply to the Tribunal to vary the conditions set out above.

Before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal on Thursday 23 February 2017: an application dated 9 January 2017 from the SRA to activate the 5 year suspension. The application was brought on the basis that, during the course of giving live oral evidence to the Tribunal during the hearing which took place on 22 December 2016 , in respect of Mr Schwartz’s unsuccessful application dated 11 November 2016 to vary the restrictions (so as to remove the restriction that he be required to obtain the SRA’s approval to any employment), Mr Schwartz admitted: 

  1. that he had deliberately and knowingly breached the restrictions on 14 September 2016;
  2. that he had then lied about having done so in a witness statement provided to the SRA and to the Tribunal at the December hearing.

Having heard submissions from both parties, the Tribunal decided to activate the 5 year suspension.

Mr Schwartz is therefore suspended for 5 years from 9 September 2016.

To see SDT judgments please go to www.solicitorstribunal.org.uk

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