COVID-19   Law    Advocacy    Topics A-Z     Training    Wrights' Blog   Wrightslaw Store    Yellow Pages for Kids 

 Home > Press Room > Lawyer with Special Needs Niche Accused of Practicing Without License

The Special Ed Advocate newsletter
It's Unique ... and Free!

Enter your email address below:

Training Programs

Dec. 10 - OH via ZOOM


Feb. 2-5 - San Antonio, TX

Feb. 27-28 - Southern CA

Mar. 23 - Anchorage, AK

Mar. 30 - Long Island, NY

Apr. 5 - Hill AFB, UT

Full Schedule


Topics from A-Z
Free Newsletter
Seminars & Training
Yellow Pages for Kids
Press Room

Books & Training

Wrightslaw Storesecure store lock
  Advocate's Store
  Student Bookstore
  Exam Copies
Training Center
Bulk Discounts
Military Discounts
Student Discounts
Mail & Fax Orders

Advocacy Library

Cool Tools
Doing Your Homework
Ask the Advocate
Newsletter Archives
Short Course Series
Success Stories

Law Library

Fed Court Complaints
IDEA 2004
McKinney-Vento Homeless
Section 504


American Indian
Assistive Technology
Autism Spectrum
Behavior & Discipline
College/Continuing Ed
Due Process
Early Intervention
  (Part C)

Episodic, such as
   Allergies, Asthma,
   Diabetes, Epilepsy, etc

Future Planning
High-Stakes Tests
Homeless Children
IDEA 2004
Identification & Child Find
Juvenile Justice
Law School & Clinics
Letters & Paper Trails
LRE / Inclusion
Military / DOD
Parental Protections
PE and Adapted PE
Privacy & Records
Procedural Safeguards
Progress Monitoring
Related Services
Research Based

Response to Intervention

Restraints / Seclusion
   and Abuse

School Report Cards
Section 504
Teachers & Principals
Twice Exceptional (2e)
VA Special Education

Resources & Directories

Advocate's Bookstore
Advocacy Resources
  Disability Groups
  State DOEs
  State PTIs
Free Flyers
Free Pubs
Free Newsletters
Legal & Advocacy
   Legal Terms
   Assessment Terms
Best School Websites


Lawyer with Special Needs Niche Accused of Practicing Without License


ABA Journal , April 23, 2010
By Molly McDonough

A Washington, D.C.-area lawyer who worked his way into the close-knit childhood autism and special needs community with a niche practice focused on special education issues wasn't licensed for at least three years even while taking on many of the cases.

The Washington Post reports that Howard D. Deiner once signed another lawyer's name on documents because he wasn't licensed at the time. He was arrested in November on charges of fraud and practicing law without a license.

Yet he may still be advising clients in Virginia, the paper reports. Deiner declined to respond to the Post and reportedly hasn't responded to the 74 charges filed by the District of Columbia Bar.

In a review of Virginia and D.C. court documents, the Post reports there emerged a pattern of Deiner's "collecting thousands in retainers, and fees of $285 an hour, then not returning phone calls and e-mails while doing no work. At other times, records show, he did poor work and lost cases because of poor preparation or presentation."

Deiner reportedly drew parents in by telling them he had a disabled child and that's why he was interested in special education law.

The Post details numerous allegations of misconduct and notes that last year, after a family sued Deiner, an Arlington judge awarded them the $13,500 in fees paid, plus $100,000 in punitive damages.

Deiner's name continued to appear on association sites listing him as a possible legal resource and associations reportedly didn't delete his name until Pete Wright, a noted special education consultant and lawyer pressured them to do so.

"That someone would falsely hold themselves out as a lawyer to parents of children with a disability, that is about as bad as it gets," Wright told the Post.

"Lawyer with Special Needs Niche Accused of Practicing without License" - ABA Journal, April 23, 2010

Print this page

Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon The Special Ed Advocate: It's Free!

ALL Wrightslaw
Products 25% OFF!

Check Out
The Advocate's Store!

Wrightslaw on FacebookWrightslaw on TwitterWrightslaw YouTube Channel 

Wrightslaw Books
Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, by Pam and Pete Wright

About the Book

Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, 2nd Edition
About the Book

Wrightslaw: All About IEPs
About the Book

Wrightslaw: All About Tests and Assessments
About the Book

Wrightslaw: Special Education Legal Developments and Cases 2019
About the Book

Surviving Due Process: Stephen Jeffers v. School Board
About the DVD Video

Student Discounts

Military Discounts

The Advocate's Store

Wrightslaw Multimedia Training

Understanding Your Child's
Test Scores (1.5 hrs)

Wrightslaw Special: $14.95

Wrightslaw Mutimedia Training Download

Special Education Law & Advocacy Training
(6.5 hrs)

Wrightslaw Special: $49.95