Yagman Reinstated in Federal Court


Civil rights lawyer Stephen Yagman has been reinstated to practice law in Federal Court in Los Angeles, after a six-month suspension.

The 44-year-old Yagman was not present on Monday when Chief Judge Manuel Real, who once fined the lawyer $250,000 because of his courtroom behavior, acted on a motion by Yagman’s attorney, Yolanda Orozco, to reinstate her client. The step was necessary for Yagman to practice in federal court.

Yagman’s suspension order was based on findings that he had refused clients’ demands to return case files, failed to provide a written accounting for $50,000 in client funds entrusted to him and charged an “unconscionable fee” to a client in a produce liability case.


Reached by telephone, Yagman said he was “pleased” by Real’s action and added that he plans to retire at the end of 1991.

“I had been mulling over retirement for a few years, and when the suspension came . . . I decided not to retire while that was going on. I look forward to the next couple years practicing in federal court,” he said.

Real’s fine of Yagman was subsequently reversed by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which has ordered the question of the fine reassigned to another federal judge.