A lawyer has drawn the attention of auditors in two states, after allegedly billing Massachusetts and Connecticut for as much as 25-and-a-half hours of work per day.
State Auditor Robert Ward says officials are looking into whether the lawyer was double-billing.
“A preliminary review of 30 dates found the person billed either Connecticut or Massachusetts an average of 20 hours a day,” Ward said.
Chief Public Defender Susan Storey says the issue arose at the Commission on Child Protection, which was recently folded into her office.
“We have very tight controls now over child protection, as far as billing procedures and performance,” Storey said.
Auditors did not release the attorney’s name, because the investigation was continuing.
The issue was mentioned in an audit at the end of a list of problems found at the Connecticut public defenders’ office:
“During the prior audit, the Commission on Child Protection informed us of a potential billing overpayment involving one of its contract attorneys, who also had a contract to provide similar services to another state. Based on a preliminary comparison of records from both states, it appears that billing irregularities likely occurred. The Commission’s initial analysis of 30 dates, for which this attorney billed both states, determined that the total number of hours billed ranged from 16 and 25.5 hours a day, an average of about 20 hours per day. The other state continues to conduct an audit of the attorney’s billings, the findings of which will be provided to the Commission on Child Protection for its review and possible action.”