Attorney loses law license after keeping client's money

Published: Oct. 25, 2019 at 11:55 PM CDT
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The Iowa Supreme Court has revoked an attorney's law license, concluding she improperly kept a client's money she wasn't entitled to.

The court says in an order released Friday that Tina Muhammad cannot apply to restore her Iowa license for at least five years.

Shortly after being admitted to the Iowa bar, Muhammad was asked in 2016 to represent a woman who lives in Washington state. The woman, who had found references on the internet to Muhammad's work on police brutality while a law student, was seeking a lawyer for a civil rights lawsuit against a Seattle hospital.

The woman paid Muhammad $7,500 in advance but after she ended the attorney-client relationship Muhammad declined to return any money or account for how it was spent.

Muhammad claims she earned the money.

The court concluded she wasn't entitled to it and says when a lawyer takes such funds, revocation of license is the appropriate sanction.

Muhammad did not respond to a request for comment.