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Forum News Service, Published January 09 2014

Devils Lake attorney disbarred for failure to perform legal services

BISMARCK - The North Dakota Supreme Court disbarred a Devils Lake attorney, citing his failure to perform legal services for seven clients and lying about it while failing to refund fees they paid him.

The decision to lift his license was announced Thursday on the Supreme Court’s website, www.ndcourts.com.

Rudolph Tollefson was admitted to the state bar in 2004 but was suspended several times for unprofessional conduct and once for failing to pay child support, the court said in its ruling. The court said some of his difficulties occurred while he was experiencing “personal or emotional problems, as well as alcohol abuse.”

Besides disbarring him, the high court also ordered him to refund “unearned fees” to five clients and provide accounting to two other clients of fees and expenses they paid him and refund anything not earned or incurred.

Tollefson graduated from the University of North Dakota’s law school.