On January 2, 2024, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued a public reprimand to attorney Michael Keith Parmelee for multiple violations of professional conduct, including conflicts of interest, financial assistance to clients, and recordkeeping deficiencies.

The case is entitled “In the Matter of Michael Keith Parmelee” with case number 088809.

The charges cited New Jersey Rules of Professional Conduct 1.7(a)(2), 1.8(e), 1.15(b), and 1.15(d).

The case originated from a motion for discipline by consent filed by the Office of Attorney Ethics (OAE). Parmelee’s infractions involved advancing funds to clients, concurrent conflicts of interest in representing both victims and defendants and recordkeeping deficiencies in his attorney trust account (ATA) and attorney business account (ABA) with TD Bank. The reprimand specifically addresses his actions between September 2015 and April 2020, including providing financial assistance to clients, failing to promptly disburse funds, and recordkeeping irregularities.

Mitigating factors considered by the Board included Parmelee’s unblemished 27-year record at the bar, his prompt correction of recordkeeping deficiencies, and the absence of venality or pecuniary gain in his misconduct. Despite the complexity of the case, the Board concluded that a reprimand, rather than a more severe form of discipline, would adequately protect the public interest and maintain confidence in the legal profession.

Based on the Board’s determination, the Supreme Court then ordered that Parmelee receive a public reprimand.

The Disposition states:

“It is ORDERED that Michael Keith Parmelee of Leonardo is hereby reprimanded; and it is further ordered that the entire record of this matter be made a permanent part of respondent’s file as an attorney at law of this State.”

According to Avvo, Mr. Parmelee is an admiralty and maritime attorney in New Jersey. He graduated from Seton Hall University School of Law in 1996. He obtained his law license in New Jersey in the same year.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.