IN THE MATTER OF JACK S. JENNINGS.
disciplinary matter involving Jack S. Jennings (State Bar No.
390990) is before the Court on the report and recommendation
of the special master, LaRae D. Moore, recommending that the
Court disbar Jennings for his abandonment of a legal matter
entrusted to him and the subsequent pattern of misconduct
that followed the initial abandonment of his client.
record shows that after one of Jennings's former clients
filed a grievance in 2017, the Investigative Panel issued a
Notice of Investigation. Jennings acknowledged service of the
Notice but failed to file a response as required by former
Bar Rule 4-204.3 (a). After the State Bar filed its formal
complaint in May 2018, this Court appointed a special master.
Jennings was personally served with the formal complaint but
failed to file a response as required by former Bar Rule
4-212 (a). As a result of his default, the facts alleged and
violations charged were deemed admitted. Id.
special master's thorough report found that Jennings, who
was admitted to the Bar in 1987, was representing a client in
an estate matter pending in court. Although the client
terminated Jennings and retained new counsel in March 2017
and new counsel immediately sought to obtain the client file,
Jennings failed to cooperate with the substitution of counsel
and never provided the full file. Instead, Jennings provided
a partial file that omitted documents showing that Jennings
had failed to respond to requests for admission. New counsel
was required to seek the court's assistance in obtaining
the file, but Jennings failed to appear at the hearing
scheduled on the matter, and even after the court ordered
Jennings to turn over the file and to pay attorney fees,
Jennings failed to comply with the court's order. By
successfully filing a motion to withdraw the matters deemed
admitted by Jennings's failures, the client's new
counsel was able to mitigate the harm Jennings caused.
special master concluded that by this conduct, Jennings
violated Rules 1.3, 1.4, 1.16 (d), 3.2, and 9.3, of the
Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct found in Bar Rule 4-102
(d) . The maximum sanction for a violation of Rule 1.3 is
disbarment, and the maximum sanction for the other violations
is a public reprimand. The special master considered the ABA
Standards for Imposing Lawyer Discipline, see In the
Matter of Morse, 266 Ga. 652, 653 (470 S.E.2d 232)
(1996), and found the following aggravating factors present:
the misconduct involved multiple violations; Jennings failed
to comply with the rules and directions of the State Bar;
Jennings refused to acknowledge the wrongful nature of his
conduct; Jennings has substantial experience in the practice
of law; and Jennings showed indifference to making
restitution. See ABA Standard § 9.22. In mitigation, the
special master noted that Jennings had no prior disciplinary
record. Id. at § 9.23. The special master
recommended disbarment as the appropriate sanction. Jennings
did not seek review of the special master's report under
former Bar Rule 4-217 (c) and has not filed a response in
considered the record, we concur with the special
master's recommendation that disbarment is the
appropriate sanction in this matter. In addition to
abandoning the legal matter entrusted to him, Jennings
intentionally concealed his misconduct, further harming his
client, and then blatantly ignored the trial court's
order to pay the court-ordered attorney fees for the trouble
he caused. Finally, Jennings refused to participate in the
disciplinary process. These facts, which show a pattern of
misconduct, support the sanction of disbarment. See, e.g.,
In the Matter of Barton, 303 Ga. 818 (813 S.E.2d
590) (2018) (disbarring lawyer for violations of Rules 1.3,
1.4, and 3.2); In the Matter of Evans, 289 Ga. 744
(715 S.E.2d 131) (2011) (disbarring lawyer for violations of
Rules 1.1, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.16, 3.2, and 9.3); and In the
Matter of Vogel, 279 Ga. 719 (620 S.E.2d 389) (2005)
(disbarring lawyer for violations of Rules 1.2, 1.3, 1.4,
1.16, 3.2, and 9.3). Accordingly, we accept the special
master's report and recommendation and hereby order that
the name of Jack S. Jennings be removed from the rolls of
persons authorized to practice law in the State of Georgia.
Jennings is reminded of his duties pursuant to former Bar
Rule 4-219 (c).
All the Justices concur.
 This Court issued an order on January
12, 2018, comprehensively amending Part IV of the Rules and
Regulations for the Organization and Government of the State
Bar of Georgia ("Bar Rules"); however, the former
rules govern this matter.
 Rule 4-219 (b) now states the
requirements of former Bar Rule ...