In re Petition for Disciplinary Action against Michael Anietie Essien, a Minnesota Attorney, Registration No. 031741X.
L. LILLEHAUG, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE
Director of the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility
has filed a petition for disciplinary action seeking
reciprocal discipline after respondent Michael Anietie Essien
was suspended in the United States Patent and Trademark
Office (USPTO) for 30 days and placed on probation. See
In re Essien, Proceeding No. D2018-46, Order at 12
(USPTO Oct. 2, 2018). Respondent was suspended in the USPTO
for failing to timely correct a deficient patent filing,
failing to timely revive the patent application after it was
deemed abandoned, failing to communicate with the client, and
making misrepresentations to the client. See 37
C.F.R. §§ 11.101, 11.103-11.104, 11.804(c)-(d)
and the Director have entered into a stipulation for
discipline. In it, respondent waives his procedural rights
under Rule 12(d), Rules on Lawyers Professional
Responsibility (RLPR), withdraws his answer, and
unconditionally admits the allegations in the petition. The
parties jointly recommend that the appropriate discipline is
a 30-day suspension, retroactive to the date respondent was
suspended in the USPTO, October 16, 2018, followed by 2 years
of supervised probation.
court has independently reviewed the file and approves the
jointly recommended disposition.
upon all the files, records, and proceedings herein, IT IS
HEREBY ORDERED THAT:
Respondent Michael Anietie Essien is suspended from the
practice of law for a minimum of 30 days, retroactive to
October 16, 2018.
Respondent shall comply with Rule 26, RLPR (requiring notice
of suspension to clients, opposing counsel, and tribunals).
Respondent shall pay $900 in costs pursuant to Rule 24, RLPR.
Respondent is eligible for reinstatement to the practice of
law. In order to be reinstated, respondent must file with the
Clerk of the Appellate Courts and serve upon the Director an
affidavit establishing that he is current in continuing legal
education requirements, has complied with Rules 24 and 26,
RLPR, and has complied with any other conditions for
reinstatement imposed by the court.
Within 1 year of the date of this order, respondent shall
file with the Clerk of the Appellate Courts and serve upon
the Director proof of successful completion of the written
examination required for admission to the practice of law by
the State Board of Law Examiners on the subject of
professional responsibility. Failure to timely file the
required documentation shall result in automatic suspension,
as provided for in Rule 18(e)(3), RLPR.
reinstatement to the practice of law, respondent shall be
placed on probation for 2 years, subject to the following
terms and conditions:
a. Respondent shall cooperate fully with the Director's
Office in its efforts to monitor compliance with this
probation. Respondent shall promptly respond to the
Director's correspondence by its due date. Respondent
shall provide to the Director a current mailing address and
shall immediately notify the Director of any change of
address. Respondent shall cooperate with the Director's
investigation of any allegations of unprofessional conduct
that may come to the Director's attention. Upon the
Director's request, respondent shall provide
authorization for release of information and documentation to
verify compliance with the terms of this probation.
b. Respondent shall abide by the Minnesota Rules of
c. Respondent shall be supervised by a licensed Minnesota
attorney, appointed by the Director to monitor compliance
with the terms of this probation. Within 2 weeks of the date
of this order, respondent shall provide to the Director the
names of four attorneys who have agreed to be nominated as
respondent's supervisor. If, after diligent effort,
respondent is unable to locate a supervisor acceptable to the
Director, the Director will seek to appoint a supervisor.
Until a supervisor has signed a consent to supervise,