Well-connected Boyles, 61, was facing disbarment but instead agreed to a one-year suspension.
In one case, Boyles sued on behalf of a dead woman whose name he misspelled.
In another instance, a judge in Broward called him a fraud for filing a lawsuit on behalf of an accident victim who was already represented by another lawyer.
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Boyles is one of the area’s best known probate and estate planning attorneys. His client list includes Palm Beach society staples. But since his case started being investigated by the Florida Bar, he changed his law firm’s name to the nondescript Probate Guardianship & Trust PA.
And, according to a source at the Palm Beach County Bar Association, the law firm is now owned by his lawyer wife, Rosemary Cooney. Boyles officials works as a paralegal.
Cooney is a shareholder at West Palm Beach’s Sonneborn Rutter & Cooney.
So, what did Boyles do?
In 2011, according to court records, he requested a list of 2009 motor vehicle deaths from state authorities.
He picked a few names then found out whether wrongful death actions were filed and/or if the family opened probate actions.
If neither had been done, Boyles then filed court actions on behalf of the survivors without ever talking to them or notifying them.
What Boyles was hoping, he told Gossip Extra, was to protect the families’ right to sue in the future.
Of course, he was hoping they’d hire him once they found out he filed on their behalf.
He was hired in four instances, and got those families money they didn’t known they could’ve claimed.
This week, Boyles wrote a letter to clients and colleagues to explain the suspension:
“At the time, I firmly believed that my actions were appropriate under the law to assist others in attempting to obtain relief to which they were entitled. In fact, my actions did assist four families in obtaining relief which they would not have received but for my actions — and for that I am proud. In so doing, however, the Bar believed that I broke the rules which I regret and for which I am willing to be held accountable.”
The Florida Bar did acknowledge in the paperwork it doesn’t appear Boyles benefited financially.
And, he says, what he is accused of is commonly done in Florida by hundreds of lawyers daily.
“I tried to do the right thing but it didn’t work very well,” Boyles said. “I could’ve pointed to the court that a lot of lawyers do the same things. I know of 100s of instances. But I just couldn’t do that to my colleagues and I decided to take my punishment like a man.”
“In the end, this could be the best thing that happened to me.”
Full Article & Source:
EXCLUSIVE — High-Profile West Palm Beach Lawyer Kevan Boyles Suspended … Filed Lawsuits On Behalf Of Fake Clients!