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Money can buy many things. When a lawyer and client have a dispute, such as a client’s claim for legal malpractice, money often can buy “peace.” And when clients and their lawyers settle such a dispute, it is common for the parties to agree by contract to dismiss—or refrain from filing—a civil complaint. But a lawyer’s ability to buy peace from a complaining client has ethical boundaries.
Prosecutors in Eagle County, Colorado have filed a five-count criminal complaint against Dak Steiert, alleged mastermind behind a fictitious IP law firm. According to state prosecutors, Steiert stole the identities of a real patent lawyer and two others to create a fake law firm which he used to lure unsuspecting inventor “clients” into paying thousands of dollars for patent ap ...