${site.data.firmName} ${site.data.firmName}
Free Consultation No recovery - No Fee
215-822-7575 / 800-358-9367
Practice Areas

Failure to Warn Client of Loss of Pension

In a recent Superior Court of Pennsylvania case, Commonwealth v. Abraham, 996 A2d 1090 (Pa. Super. 2010), the Court held that the failure of counsel to advise his client that a direct consequence of entering a guilty plea to Indecent Assault with a female student would be the forfeiture of his vested pension rights was ineffective assistance of counsel.  The lesson we learn is that whenever a client pleads to any criminal offense, we are obligated to make certain that the client understands all of the consequences of the plea.  The court makes a distinction between a direct consequence and a collateral consequence.

A collateral consequence is defined as one that is not related to length or nature of the sentence imposed on the basis of the guilty plea, while a direct consequence is one that has a definite, immediate and largely automatic effect on the range of the defendant's punishment.  The loss of the pension is related to the nature of the sentence and the application of the measure has a definite, immediate and automatic effect on the range of the punishment.  By pleading guilty, the defendant immediately lost his rights in his vested state teacher pension.  By failing to tell him, the attorney was deemed to be ineffective, and the case was remanded.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Gregory R. Gifford
  • RGS&G Firm News

    "Gregory R. Gifford, a partner at the Lansdale law firm of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg and Gifford, P.C., was elected Vice President of the Montgomery Bar Association on January 13, 2017. Mr. Gifford is a past Director of the Association and has also served as its Treasurer and Secretary"Read more...

  • Super Lawyers | Rising Stars
  • National board of legal speciality certification
  • American college of trial lawyers
  • National board of trial advocacy | EST 1977
  • 2013 | Subarbanlife | Awesome Attorneys
  • PennSuburban | Chamber of commerce

Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg and Gifford has been a member of the local Penn Suburban Chamber of Commerce (previously known as North Penn Suburban Chamber of Commerce) for more than 25 years.

You Have Questions? We Have Answers. Fill out the form and an attorney will be in touch with you shortly.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

start now. send your request