Fourth District Ethics Committee

Thank you for your interest in volunteering with the Fourth District Ethics Committee (4th DEC). The purpose of the 4th DEC is to investigate professional ethics complaints against attorneys who have their primary practice in Hennepin County.

Each investigation generally requires the volunteer investigator to review the relevant documents (including the complaint, the attorney’s response, and the complainant’s reply), and to interview witnesses (including the complainant and the attorney).  The volunteer investigator then writes a brief report setting out the facts, analyzing the relevant Minnesota Rules of Professional Conduct, and making a recommendation to the 4th DEC Screening Committee about whether discipline is warranted. 
The 4th DEC Screening Committee hears investigators’ reports, discusses them, and recommends to the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility (OLPR) whether or not discipline is warranted.  The Committee generally meets via remote videoconference on alternating Wednesdays starting at 8:00 a.m., and meetings typically run anywhere from 1 – 2 hours.  Investigators are expected to attend meetings when they present a report, and are welcome to attend as many other meetings as they like.  After the meeting, the investigator returns their report and file to OLPR.

Volunteer investigators typically receive 2 investigations per year.  Each investigation may take 10-15 hours (or more) and should be completed (including the return of the report and file) within 90 days of assignment.  We ask that new investigators commit to a year of service and attend a live online training session before receiving their first investigation.  Volunteer investigators may serve two consecutive three-year terms, take one year off, and serve an additional two consecutive three-year terms. 

Contact Sarah Mayer at 612-752-6625 for more information on the 4th District Ethics Committee.

 Apply for Committee Here.

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