Court: Iowa lawyers overbilled ill Vietnam veteran

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court has suspended two lawyers for charging excessive fees to a mentally ill Vietnam veteran whose affairs they helped manage for three decades.

The court said Keota law partners Donald Laing and Scott Railsback claimed too many hours for managing the conservatorship of John Klein and charged excessive rates for performing services that didn’t require legal training. Justices suspended the licenses of Laing and Railsback for 18 months.

Laing was appointed Klein’s conservator in 1974 after Klein inherited farmland and other property from his mother’s death. He didn’t have a legal guardian, and Laing and Railsback helped care for him.

The court says the attorneys “sincerely attempted to make Klein’s life better” but went wrong in applying for excessive fees, even if a judge approved them annually.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s