On Wednesday, January 24, 2024, the Supreme Court of the State of New York Appellate Division: Second Judicial Department issued an opinion and order regarding attorney Michael D. Don.
The case is entitled “In the Matter of Michael D. Don,” with case no. 2022-06482.
The order stemmed from a petition filed on May 18, 2023, by the Grievance Committee containing one charge of professional misconduct alleging Don violated Rules 8.4(b) and 8.4(h) of the New York Rules of Professional Conduct. These rules prohibit engaging in illegal conduct that reflects adversely on one’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer. Don was served with the petition and notice but failed to file an answer by the extended deadline of June 28, 2023.
As a result, the Grievance Committee brought a motion to deem the single charge in the petition established based on Don’s default. Separately, the Committee had also moved to strike Don’s name from the roll of attorneys based on his felony conviction on September 14, 2021. However, Don’s guilty plea has since been vacated and the charge dismissed and sealed on September 1, 2022.
In its order, the Court granted the Grievance Committee’s motion to deem the charge in the petition established. The Court then disbarred Don and removed his name from the roll of attorneys, finding he had automatically lost his law license based on the original felony conviction under Judiciary Law § 90(4)(a) prior to the conviction being vacated.
The Court denied as moot the Grievance Committee’s separate motion regarding striking Don’s name since he was now being disbarred based on the established misconduct charge instead. Don is prohibited from practicing law and is required to continue complying with attorney conduct rules for disbarred lawyers. He must also return any secure passes issued by the Office of Court Administration.
According to avvo.com, Mr. Michael David Don was a litigation attorney in New York, New York. He attended the New York Law School and acquired his law license in New York in 1999.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.