Hyannis Lawyer Indefinitely Suspended Due to Misappropriation of Funds

Former Chair of CC Child Development, board member of other charities...
Matthew Bresette

A prominent Hyannis attorney has been indefinitely suspended from the practice of law by order of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.  

Matthew Bresette, who formerly headed the Hyannis office of Nutter McClennen & Fish, resigned from the firm in March, according to The American Lawyer (law.com)

In mid-June an order was issued by Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) Justice David Lowy temporarily suspending Bresette from the practice of law pending the outcome of a disciplinary case with the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers (BBO).

According to documents obtained from the BBO, Bresette admitted to intentionally misappropriating funds from trust clients and the firm in four ways:

  1. directing payments from a trust account for his own personal expenses
  2. charging personal expenses to his personal credit card and then causing those expenses to be billed to clients
  3. submitting false cash reimbursement requests that were paid to him by the firm and charged to a client
  4. charging personal expenses to his corporate credit card, coding the charges to clients but not billing the clients.

When Bresette's actions came to the attention of the law firm, he resigned, ceased practicing law and reported his misconduct to the bar counsel.  At the time of his resignation, Bresette owed approximately $96,000 to the law firm and its trust clients. The SJC order states that the firm reimbursed the clients and that Bresette has now made restitution to both the firm and the trust clients.  The SJC order indicates the misconduct commenced in or before 2013.

On October 15, 2018, Justice Lowy issued an order for Bresette's indefinite suspension, based upon a stipulation of the faces and joint recommendation of Mr. Bresette and the bar counsel.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Matthew Bresette graduated from Washington University in St. Louis School of Law in 2001 and joined Nutter in September of that year.  He made partner in January 2009.

Matthew Bresette was president of the Barnstable County Bar Association in 2012-2013, the same time frame in which his admitted misconduct commenced at the law firm.

Bresette was prominent in Cape Cod philanthropic circles for nearly a decade.  He was Cape Cod Child Development's board chair at the time of his resignation in March 2018 and served on their board for nine years.  Mr. Bresette was also a nine year board member of the Cape Cod Times Needy Fund, Inc. and a six year board member of the Cape Cod Foundation, where he was Clerk of the corporation at the time of his resignation in April 2018.

At this time there is no indication of Bresette being involved in any financial wrongdoing with any of his non-profit work.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr. Bresette is currently working as a consultant with a particular experience with non-profits and non-profit boards.

You can read the full text of the SJC Suspension Order here



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