The Office of Disciplinary Counsel (ODC) was formed by the Hawaii Supreme Court to investigate complaints against Hawaii lawyers as part of the Disciplinary Board of the Hawaii Supreme Court. The ODC also provides investigative and administrative support to the Lawyers' Fund.

What this means is that if you have a complaint against your attorney for violations of ethics or rules, you can submit this  to ODC and they will investigate for you. If your attorney is found to be in violation as you thought, sanctions (penalty) will be applied.

Your complaint should be in letter format, concise and supported by documentation or a witness.  When drafting your letter, put your full name and contact information at the top of the first page (centered) and include the date.  Be respectful of the ODC, they are in place to help you and the clearer you can lay out your argument, the easier it will be for someone to understand.  Try to refrain from emotional statements, present the facts and substantiate your statements with a piece of paper.  Do NOT send originals.  At the top of each subsequent page, please include the name of the agency/individual, the date, and the page number.  See the example below:

Office of the Disciplinary Counsel
April 4, 2009
Page Two

We have found at least one person of integrity at the ODC.  Her name is Kori Anderson. If you wish you can address your complaint to her and she will direct it to the appropriate party.

Office of Disciplinary Counsel
1132 Bishop Street, Suite 300
Honolulu, Hawaii  96813
Phone: (808) 521-4591

If you need assistance with your complaint, consult a Paralegal.

All that being said, AngelGroup has seen cases that are obviously violations of ethics, and even though ODC kept appearances by doing an "investigation", in the end the attorneys were not held accountable.  In one case the ODC's response was returned with a finding of no fault, and was signed by the personal friend of the attorney being investigated.  In another case, ODC determined that they didn't have time to investigate and they invited the victim to prosecute the attorney in civil court and stated she probably would win.  In both these cases, clearly ODC didn't do their job and didn't protect the residents of Hawaii against the unethical actions of attorneys.  If you have a story about your success or lackthereof with ODC, please email AngelGroup with the details.