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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.
… Each year, a number of patent and trademark practitioners agree to exclusion from the USPTO rather than face an OED ethics investigation or USPTO disciplinary action. While not always the case, such consent exclusions usually involve very serious–and often criminal–practitioner misconduct. One such matter is the case of former patent attorney…
… jurisdiction. Those are the takeaways from a recent case interpreting and applying the USPTO’s rule on reciprocal discipline, 37 C.F.R. Section 11.24. See Haley v. Lee, No. 1:15-cv-102 (GBL/TRJ), 2015 U.S. Dist. Ct. LEXIS 120324, at *26 (E.D. Va. Sept. 8, 2015). In Haley, the district court agreed with the USPTO Director that a patent attorney who…
… “The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits” — Albert Einstein It should come as no surprise that various forms of financial misconduct top the list of ways to lose your law license. The most common reasons for being disbarred involve—exclusively or in combination with other misconduct—misappropriation of funds…