||In 2005, Respondent was suspended on consent for a period of three years and ordered to comply with all provisions of Pa.R.D.E. 217. Subsequent to his suspension Respondent worked and held himself out as an Unemployment Representative with the Unemployment Help Center, wherein he represented claimants and employers with unemployment compensation matters.
ODC filed with the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania a Petition for Rule to Show Cause Why Respondent Should Not Be Held in Contempt by violating RPC 5.5 (a) and Pa.R.D.E. 217 (j). Respondent submitted a response in which he relied on the case of Harkness v. Unemployment Comp. Bd., 920 A.2d 162 (Pa. 2007) where the Court had held that a non-attorney who represented an employer before a referee of UCBR was not engaged in the unauthorized practice of law. ODC distinguished Harkness by contending that Respondent is a “formerly admitted attorney”, subject to the Rules of Professional Conduct and the PA.R.D.E, which do not apply to non-attorneys and did not factor into the Harkness decision.
The Supreme Court held Bargeron in contempt for willful violation of Rule 217(j), Pa.R.D.E. and directed Respondent to immediately desist from all activities in connection with his representation of claimants and employers in unemployment compensation matters before the Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation Review Board.