Attorney Misconduct, Boutique Law Firms, Lawyer of the Day, Legal Ethics, Litigators, Plaintiffs Firms, Politics, Small Law Firms

Disgraced Plaintiffs’ Lawyer Stan Chesley: He’s Baaack….

Stanley M. Chesley

People have strong opinions about Stan Chesley, the high-profile, hugely successful plaintiffs’ lawyer — or former plaintiffs’ lawyer, since he recently got disbarred in Kentucky and gave up his law license in Ohio (in a retirement application that was notarized by his wife, federal judge Susan Dlott). Here are some choice comments about Chesley, nicknamed the “Prince of Torts” and “Master of Disaster”:

  • “[A]n opportunist and just a nasty son of a bitch.”
  • “[W]hat [Chesley] does is evil.”
  • “The ultimate grotesque, exaggerated perversion of what it means to be a lawyer.”
  • “He has balls as big as brass bells.”

And those bells are still ringing. Stan Chesley might not be back in the courtroom, but he’s back in the headlines in Ohio….

When Chesley got disbarred, we offered him some advice: “it’s time to hang up the armor, put your horse in the stable, and return home to your 27,000-square-foot castle.” But even if Sir Stan is no longer working 12-hour days, he’s not giving himself over to total leisure either. Here’s a report from WCPO (which previously did a nice four-part series on the rise and fall of Stan Chesley):

Cincinnati super lawyer Stan Chesley, disbarred in Kentucky and retired from the practice of law in Ohio, was appointed to the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission Wednesday.

Some might wonder whether someone who has been called “a nasty son of a bitch” and “evil” would be an expert on “Human Relations.” But in defense of Chesley, many of the negative comments come from his adversaries. Those whom he has helped, either by representing them as a lawyer or by donating to their causes as a philanthropist, generally sing his praises.

By a vote of 8 to zero, council approved a 21-month appointment of the famed father of the modern class action without ever uttering his name. Cincinnati Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls was absent.

Chesley, 77, will serve as a commissioner until March 2015. The commission is made up of about two dozen community members and is authorized to study and investigate problems between racial, religious and ethnic groups in Cincinnati.

Who says the Midwest isn’t diverse? Apparently there are multiple “racial, religious, and ethnic groups in Cincinnati.” And Chesley, who hammered out numerous settlements during his 50-plus years in practice, might be good at helping them all get along.

Good luck to Stan Chesley in his new role. He’s living proof that there is life after scandal. If you’ve been publicly humiliated, don’t seethe and stew; get on with your life, find something new to do.

Stan Chesley appointed to Cincinnati Human Relations Commission [WCPO.com]
How a single case dethroned the ‘Prince of Torts’ [WCPO.com]
American Greed: Kentucky Fen-Phen Attorneys [CNBC]
Chesley Inc.: Famed local attorney got rich by breaking ground [Business Courier]

Earlier: Lawyer of the Day: Stan Chesley, Disbarred Husband of a Federal Judge

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