Posted in Disbarred Attorneys, Pierce County

Clark T Ransom

Clark T. Ransom
License Number: 10925
License Type: Lawyer
Eligible To Practice: No
License Status: Disbarred
WSBA Admit Date: 10/24/1980
Contact Information
Public/Mailing Address: PO Box 870
Rainier, WA 98576-0870
Email: ransomc@spso.net
Phone: (360) 446-0955
Practice Information Identified by Legal Professional
Firm or Employer:
Office Type and Size: Not Specified
Practice Areas: None Specified
Languages Other Than English: None Specified
Professional Liability Insurance
Private Practice:
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Last Updated:
Committees
Member of these committees/boards/panels:
None
Disciplinary History
Action Effective Date
Disbarment 03/04/2002

In some cases, discipline search results will not reveal all disciplinary action relating to a Washington licensed legal professional, and may not display links to the official decision documents.

Discipline Notice – Clark Ransom
License Number: 10925
Member Name: Clark Ransom
Discipline Detail
Action: Disbarment
Effective Date: 3/4/2002
RPC: 1.15 – (prior to 9/1/2006) Declining or Terminating Representation
1.3 – Diligence
1.4 – Communication
8.4 (c) – Dishonesty, Fraud, Deceit or Misrepresentation
8.4 (l) – Violate ELCs
Discipline Notice:
Description: Clark T. Ransom (WSBA No. 10925, admitted 1980), of Rainier, was disbarred by order of the Supreme Court effective March 4, 2002, following a default hearing. The discipline is based on lack of diligence, unfair business transactions with a client, and failure to protect two clients’ interests when closing his practice in 1999.

Matter 1: In early 1999, Mr. Ransom began representing Mr. O on several matters, including an ongoing bankruptcy. The client consulted Mr. Ransom for advice on how to realize his investment in a parcel of real property to obtain funds to pay off his creditors. The client needed financing to build a road though the property to provide access to 13 subdivided lots. Mr. Ransom suggested that his brother might be interested in investing in the client’s subdivision project.

In March 1999, the client met with Mr. Ransom and his brother regarding a possible investment. The client learned that an undeveloped parcel of land in Poulso was available for sale. The client hired Mr. Ransom to work with him in this purchase along with Mr. H, who was to provide the financing. The client would log the land and sell the lumber, and together they would subdivide and sell the individual lots. In exchange for doing the necessary legal work on this project, Mr. Ransom agreed to accept 20 percent of the profits, and told the client he would create a corporation to handle the transaction. Mr. Ransom did not form a corporation, but did print letterhead with a corporate name, listing himself as president.

In May 1999, Mr. Ransom wrote the client a letter on corporate letterhead offering to finance the $35,000 cost of road construction in exchange for being repaid out of the first available proceeds, and a fee of $2,000 for each of the 13 lots to be sold. The client accepted the offer, and another lawyer filed a motion asking the bankruptcy court to approve the plan.

In June 1999, Mr. Ransom attempted to register the corporate name with the Washington secretary of state. Upon discovering that a corporation already existed under that name, he registered under a different name, listing himself as the sole director and registered agent. The bankruptcy court approved the loan from the first unregistered corporation.

In August, Mr. Ransom obtained a $25,000 loan for the corporation from his brother. The corporation promised to pay the brother $30,000 before January 1, 2000. Mr. Ransom deposited the money into a bank account in the corporation’s name. Over the first few weeks in September 1999, Mr. Ransom made several withdrawals from this account, including checks made out to himself, his video business and his son. Mr. Ransom did not pay the contractors who were logging the Poulsbo property and did not complete the services contract for the road.

In mid-October 1999, Mr. Ransom told his brother that he was closing his law practice and moving to Arizona. Mr. Ransom was representing Mr. O when he left Washington, and failed to notify his client of this decision, and to answer disciplinary counsel’s questions about this matter.

Matter 2: In April 1999, Mr. Ransom represented Mr. and Mrs. R in an appeal from a Department of Licensing (DOL) administrative law judge’s decision imposing a $19,710 tax and fee assessment against their trucking business. Mr. Ransom mailed the clients’ petition for reconsideration one day after the 10-day deadline.

On May 7, 1999, the DOL director denied the clients’ petition because it was not timely filed. The director’s decision also explained the procedures for judicial review. Mr. Ransom filed the clients’ petition for judicial review more than 30 days after the deadline, and failed to serve the DOL and the attorney general for another three weeks. The clients were unable to contact Mr. Ransom, so they called the assistant attorney general working on the case. The clients learned that their petition was filed late and that the attorney general had filed a motion to dismiss their petition. The clients then learned that Mr. Ransom had left the state and that they could pick up their file from his 17-year-old son. The clients retained new counsel and negotiated a settlement with DOL. Mr. Ransom failed to respond to disciplinary counsel’s requests for information regarding this matter.

Mr. Ransom’s conduct violated RPCs 1.3, requiring lawyers to diligently represent their clients; 1.4, requiring lawyers to keep clients reasonably informed about the status of their matters; 1.15(d), requiring lawyers to take steps to protect clients’ interests after terminating representation; 8.4(c), prohibiting conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation; and RLD 2.8(a), requiring lawyers to promptly respond to disciplinary counsels’ requests for information regarding disciplinary investigations.

Kevin Bank represented the Bar Association. Mr. Ransom represented himself. The hearing officer was William Nielsen.

In some cases, discipline search results will not reveal all disciplinary action relating to a Washington licensed legal professional, and may not display links to the official decision documents.

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Author:

I am an animals rescuer, a mother, a grandmother, a minister, & a human being who is tired of all the corruption going on in our state.

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