In the Matter of Disciplinary Proceedings Against Edward W. Matchett, Attorney at Law: Office of Lawyer Regulation, Complainant,
Edward W. Matchett, Respondent.
ATTORNEY DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS AGAINST MATCHETT
¶1 We review a stipulation pursuant to Supreme Court Rule (SCR) 22.12 between the Office of Lawyer Regulation (OLR) and Attorney Edward W. Matchett. In the stipulation, Attorney Matchett agrees with the OLR's position that his misconduct warrants the imposition of a public reprimand as discipline reciprocal to that imposed on him in Arizona.
¶2 After fully reviewing the stipulation and the facts of this matter, we accept the stipulation and impose the public reprimand jointly requested by the parties.
¶3 Attorney Matchett was admitted to practice law in Wisconsin in 1989. Attorney Matchett's Wisconsin disciplinary history consists of a 2007 private reprimand for a lack of diligence and communication in a criminal matter, as reciprocal discipline from another state. OLR Private Reprimand 2007-21. Attorney Matchett is also admitted to practice law in Arizona and practices in Douglas, Arizona.
¶4 On December 23, 2014, the Attorney Discipline Probable Cause Committee of the Supreme Court of Arizona admonished Attorney Matchett for failing to file a notice of appearance in a probate matter, failing to check the legal status of a client's claim, failing to ask the Personal Representative's attorney to copy him on documents, and failing to find and cite a specific dispositive case to the court, resulting in unnecessary motions and an appeal. The Arizona Supreme Court found these acts violated ERs 1.3 (diligence) and 8.4(d) (conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice) of the Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 42, Ariz.R.Sup.Ct. Attorney Matchett failed to notify the OLR of the Arizona admonition within 20 days of its effective date.
¶5 On February 15, 2016, the OLR filed a complaint alleging that, by virtue of the Arizona admonition, Attorney Matchett is subject to reciprocal discipline in Wisconsin pursuant to SCR 22.22. The complaint further alleged that by failing to notify the OLR of his admonition in Arizona for professional misconduct within 20 days of the effective date of its imposition, Attorney Matchett violated SCR 22.22(1). The OLR asked this court to issue an order directing Attorney Matchett to inform the court of any claim by him predicated upon the grounds set forth in SCR 22.22(3) that imposition of discipline reciprocal to that imposed in Arizona would be unwarranted.
¶6 On March 18, 2016, the parties filed a jointly executed stipulation whereby Attorney Matchett agrees that by virtue of the Arizona admonition, he is subject to reciprocal discipline in Wisconsin pursuant to SCR 22.22. He agrees that the factual allegations contained in the OLR's complaint are accurate and that he committed the professional misconduct charged in the complaint. The stipulation states that Attorney Matchett does not claim any of the defenses set forth in SCR 22.22(3)(a)-(c). The stipulation states that Attorney Matchett fully understands the nature of the misconduct allegations against him, his right to contest those allegations, and the ramifications that would follow from this court's imposition of the stipulated level of discipline. The stipulation indicates that Attorney Matchett understands his right to counsel and verifies that he is entering into the stipulation knowingly and voluntarily and that his entry into the stipulation represents his decision not to contest this matter. He agrees that it would be appropriate for this court to publicly reprimand him.
¶7 Having carefully considered this matter, we approve the stipulation, adopt the stipulated facts and legal conclusions of professional misconduct, and we publicly reprimand Attorney Matchett. Because Attorney Matchett entered into a comprehensive stipulation under SCR ...