North Carolina attorney Vasilios Alexander Venakides has been publicly reprimanded after a Sept. 14 Florida Supreme Court order following allegations he stopped communicating with a client in a marriage dissolution case.
Venakides' public reprimand will appear on the Southern Reporter, according to the consent judgment filed with the court. The consent judgment also includes Venakides' conditional guilty plea.
Venakides, of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, also became a delinquent member of the Florida State Bar due to failure to complete continuing legal education requirements, according to the consent judgment. The state bar later found Venakides had relocated to North Carolina and had failed to update his address.
The supreme court's single-page order also directed Venakides to pay $1,386 in costs. The state bar announced the discipline and the court's order Oct. 30. In Florida court orders are not final until the time to file a rehearing motion expires.
Venakides was admitted to the bar in Florida on June 13, 2013, and had no other disciplines before the state bar, according to his profile at the state bar website and the consent judgment.
Venakides was hired by his client in the marriage dissolution case in the spring of, according to the consent judgment. The following February, Venakides filed initial papers but otherwise stopped communicating with his client, the judgment said.
The respondent became a delinquent member of the state bar the following June.
His client began to file pro se pleadings in the divorce case and Venakindes did not appear for a case management conference that October, according to the judgment. The judge in the case granted the client's motion to remove Venakides as his attorney and, as the couple had reached a settlement, allowed them to finalize their divorce. .
The client filed a complaint with the state bar shortly and, when the state bar attempted to contact Venakides, the bar discovered the attorney had relocated to North, according to the judgment.
Venakides has since completed his continuing legal education requirements and has brought his state bar membership into good standing. "There were no other client complaints," the judgment said. "This appeared to be an isolated incident of neglect."