Ohio Supreme Court suspends Dayton attorney for second time

The Ohio Supreme Court on Wednesday suspended a Dayton attorney for a second time within 10 years.

The most recent suspension for David E. Stenson is for one year, with six months stayed, for neglecting his clients’ matters, including missing a deadline to file a lawsuit, according to Court News Ohio, a service of the supreme court.

The court found that because of Stenson’s prior discipline, refusal to acknowledge wrongdoing and attempts to blame his clients, “an actual suspension from the practice of law is necessary to protect the public,” the decision stated.

The Cincinnati Bar Association filed a complaint in 2022 with the Board of Professional Conduct against Stenson that alleged he mishandled his client’s mother’s estate in Hamilton County Probate Court.

Stenson reportedly missed multiple filing deadlines and extensions, leading him to withdraw from the case. His client hired a different attorney to complete the estate work, which was finalized nearly two years after the estate was opened.

The bar association’s complaint was amended in 2023 when a missed deadline reportedly cost another client the right to sue for injuries she suffered in a fall at a Macy’s store in August 2020.

The client met with Stenson in October 2020 about her personal injury case. In September 2011, she rejected a $2,500 offer to settle her claim. Stenson in May 2022 asked for $335 for a lawsuit filing fee. His client said she would need some time to come up with the money and brought a check to his office in September 2022. However, Stenson didn’t file the lawsuit until December 2022 or January 2023, when the statute of limitations to file the claim had lapsed, according to Court News Ohio.

The court approved the board’s recommendation that Stenson be suspended for one year with six months stayed with conditions that he complete six hours of continuing legal education focused on law office management and a training program on managing a client trust account. He also must submit to an assessment conducted by the Ohio Lawyers Assistance Program and comply with any treatment recommendations. He also was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

If he is reinstated, he must serve one year of monitored probation.

Stenson was previously suspended in 2014 for six months, with the full suspension stayed on allegations he neglected a client’s case.

He practices in Dayton, at David E. Stenson & Associates, 131 N. Ludlow St., suite 316. The firm has been in business for 28 years and has an A+ rating, according to the Better Business Bureau.

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