Howard confronts disbarred lawyer

Posted at 10:45 PM, Feb 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-13 22:45:11-05

In all the years I’ve been doing this, I’ve never had a story quite like this one.

A few years ago, Deborah Blair of Brooklyn, had a problem with an employer. She says she was sexually harassed at the gym where she was working and lost her job. She wanted to sue.

So she turned to a guy who had done legal work for her before and had become a friend, New York attorney Michael Roy Bressler.

Bressler said he was on it. But things got a bit odd.

“I kept getting adjournments. I was never called for a deposition! I found that kinda strange,” Deborah told me. “I asked him for docket numbers or case numbers. I’ll bring it. I’ll bring it. Never did.”

Now, Bressler never took any money from Deborah and never had her sign a retainer. But eventually she says Bressler told her there’d been a settlement. At first he supposedly said the amount was $100,000 and he’d send her installments.

“I have an envelope that he sent to me. It’s supposed to be a check. He sent it to me USPS registered. Inside was white piece of folded paper. Well, I almost lost my mind! So I called Help Me Howard.”

The first thing we did was check Bressler’s background. Turns out, the guy was disbarred in 2004. A major factor was that he just didn’t do the work for clients.

So, Deborah made an appointment to meet Bressler. I went along. To say that our meeting was bizarre is an understatement. Bressler conceded he’d been disbarred I asked him if he could explain his actions. All he said was, “No.” Eventually he said it was a mistake.

Howard: “Mr. Bressler let me ask you this. Was there ever a settlement?”

Bressler: “No.”

Howard: “So you just made it up?

Bressler nodded.

Howard: “Practicing without a license?”

Bressler: “I was not practicing.”

And then, Michael Bressler just walked away.

It appears he never did any work on Deborah’s case. He just strung her along, costing her the opportunity to get a licensed attorney to handle her action.

Deborah showed us messages in which Bressler offers $40,000 to make up for the wrong he did to her. Deborah is trying to work out a payment plan that doesn’t drag on forever. We’ll see.