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State Bar of Michigan Blogs
Lansing, MI
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The State Bar of Michigan mourns the loss of its 36th president, Charles W. Joiner, who died March 10 at the age of 101. A 1939 graduate of the University of Iowa Law School, Joiner was elected president of the State Bar of Michigan from 1970-1971. He had a long and distinguished legal career in the Ann Arbor area, after first serving as an aviation cadet, flight instructor, pilot and crew commander of a B-29 bomber squadron in the Pacific during World War II, and then served as an attorney with the firm Miller, Huebner, and Miller in Des Moines.... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan Young Lawyers Section will host its 10th Annual Summit April 28–29 at Crystal Mountain Resort in Thompsonville. The Summit will feature a special keynote address by new Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Stephen Markman, and two educational programming tracks. The Professional and Business Development Track will include the following educational seminars: “Beyond LinkedIn: How to Build a Powerful Professional Network on Social Media,” “Rainmaking: Much More than Simply Making Money,” “Cut the Fat: Use Lean to Improve Efficiency, Reduce Cost & Return Respect for People to Your Legal Practice,” “The Professional Professional: Cultivating an Image... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at SBM Blog
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A new State Bar of Michigan section, the LGBTQA Section, has been launched to promote the fair and just administration of the law for lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and questioning people and their allies. The LGBTQA Section will review law, cases, regulations and other matters that affect LGBTQ persons and their allies, and will write and educate the State Bar and the public, be a resource for the State Bar on LGBTQ-related issues and coordinate its activities with other sections and affinity bar associations. To accomplish its goals, the section will sponsor meetings and conferences of educational value and support... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2017 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan invites all law firms of two or more attorneys to apply for the 2017 Pro Bono Circle of Excellence, recognizing each firm that fully complied with the State Bar’s Voluntary Pro Bono Standard in 2016. The application deadline is April 7. The Voluntary Pro Bono Standard applies to legal services for low-income individuals and organizations, as well as financial support for eligible nonprofit organizations providing free civil legal aid for the poor. Contributions to the Access to Justice Fund count toward fulfilling the Standard. The Standard calls for attorneys to annually take three pro bono... Continue reading
Posted Mar 10, 2017 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan Criminal Issues Initiative and Equal Access Initiative, in collaboration with the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, will present an educational opportunity, “What Do You Mean I Can’t Do That? The Consequences of a Juvenile Adjudication,” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 25 at Lake Michigan College, located at 2755 E. Napier Ave. in Benton Harbor. The program will contain a panel discussion moderated by Berrien County Probate Court Judge Mabel Johnson Mayfield that will explore the school to prison pipeline, long-term impacts of juvenile pleas and adjudications, alternatives to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2017 at SBM Blog
Nearly 300 police agencies that work to protect more than 80 percent of Michigan’s citizens have now adopted scientifically sound eyewitness identification guidelines recommended by a task force convened by the State Bar of Michigan in 2011. "Misidentification played a key role in the wrongful conviction of each our clients, who were exonerated years later through DNA testing,” said Marla Mitchell-Cichon, director of the Cooley Innocence Project at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School. “With law enforcement agencies across the state adopting evidence-based identification practices, the reliability of identifications increases and the risk of wrongful convictions decreases. Kudos to the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 24, 2017 at SBM Blog
Important changes to the SBM print member directory will take effect with the April 2017 issue. The new, portable directory will be more accurate, much less costly to print and distribute, and takes into account substantial changes in member preferences and use over the last decade. It will not include members’ contact information, but will have the information members have told us they value most in a print directory. Accurate Information Given the increased frequency with which our members change their business locations and contact information, the annual print directory can no longer be considered a reliable source of information.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2017 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan Lawyers and Judges Assistance Program will host a training program for providers called, "The Digital Age's Public Health Crisis: Sex and Porn Addiction," at 9 a.m. on Friday, March 17 at the State Bar of Michigan Michael Franck Building, located at 306 Townsend St. in Lansing. Kenneth M. Adams, Ph.D., CSAT-S will present the $99 training, which will allow those in attendance to earn three CAC-related credits. Any provider on the SBM preferred provider list or anyone interested in being added to the list is welcome to attend, but must register by March 10. There... Continue reading
Posted Feb 14, 2017 at SBM Blog
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State Bar of Michigan members get a special $150 discount to ABA TECHSHOW, which will take place March 15-18 at the Hilton Chicago. To get the discount, register for ABA TECHSHOW and use this discount code: EP1701. For more than 30 years, ABA TECHSHOW has taught lawyers how to make technology work for them. If you attend, you'll network with legal technology experts from around the globe, learn to practice more competently and gain an understanding of how to more effectively provide service to your clients. Learn more or sign up for ABA TECHSHOW. Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2017 at SBM Blog
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Casemaker and vLex have formed a joint licensing partnership, giving Casemaker customers access to vLex's international case law searches and materials, and giving vLex customers access to Caskemaker's collection of U.S. federal and state case law, CaseCheck+ negative citator system, codes, statute annotator, specific jurisdiction courts, administrative law, federal and state regulations, statutes, court rules and constitutions. Every member of the State Bar of Michigan gets free access to Casemaker, which normally costs hundreds of dollars a month, as a benefit of his or her membership in the State Bar of Michigan. Access more information about Casemaker and/or log in... Continue reading
Posted Feb 2, 2017 at SBM Blog
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Did you know you can use your State Bar of Michigan membership to enjoy special prices on travel opportunities? The State Bar of Michigan has partnered with Go Next to present special exploration opportunities to SBM members and their family and friends. Some trips you can enjoy in 2017 include a 10-nights of island-hopping around Greece, a 16-night cruise visiting Key West and cities across the Mexican coast, a 14-night cruise to Australia and New Zealand, or a 10-night cruise through Europe, with stops in Paris, Bruges, Antwerp, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Oslo and Gothenburg. Right now, due to the popularity of... Continue reading
Posted Jan 27, 2017 at SBM Blog
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Michigan State University Law School will host an interactive workshop to help law students, lawyers and legal services providers improve their professional use of social media, whether you are beginner or a pro. During the workshop, you will learn from Kevin O’Keefe, attorney and CEO of LexBlog Network about how to effectively utilize social media to build a personal brand, establish expertise, and build an online community. The workshop is open to law students, lawyers, academics, judges, court staff and all other legal service delivery professionals. The workshop is free and will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2017 at SBM Blog
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The American Bar Association Center for Innovation is now accepting applications for its 2017 fellows program. There are two categories of fellows: NextGen Fellows and Innovation Fellows. NextGen Fellows are recent law school graduates who will spend one year in-residence at the ABA headquarters in Chicago. They will receive a stipend of $45,000 plus benefits during their time in the program. There are two openings in the NextGen program. Innovation Fellows will rotate in and out of Chicago on a nine to 12 week basis, beginning in April. There is no stipend for this fellowship, but sponsorships may be available.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2017 at SBM Blog
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Got plans for January 16? If not, check out this list of events happening across Michigan that day, which also happens to be Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We encourage all Michigan attorneys to participate in a day of service, either on January 16 or throughout the year, to commemorate MLK Day. Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2017 at SBM Blog
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The Michigan Supreme Court voted unanimously to elect Justice Stephen Markman as the next chief justice. Markman was appointed to the Supreme Court by Governor John Engler in 1999, then was elected to his seat in 2000 and reelected in 2004 and 2012. Prior to serving on the state's highest court, Markman served as U.S. Attorney in Detroit, as an assistant U.S. Attorney General and a judge on the Michigan Court of Appeals. He also practiced law with Miller, Canfield, Paddock & Stone in Detroit. Markman's term as chief justice will follow that of Chief Justice Robert Young Jr., who... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2017 at SBM Blog
Important changes to the SBM print member directory will take effect with the April 2017 issue. The new, portable directory will be more accurate, much less costly to print and distribute, and takes into account substantial changes in member preferences and use over the last decade. It will not include members’ contact information, but will have the information members have told us they value most in a print directory. Accurate Information Given the increased frequency with which our members change their business locations and contact information, the annual print directory can no longer be considered a reliable source of information.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2017 at SBM Blog
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Nominations are being accepted for two State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly awards. The Michael Franck Award is given annually to an attorney who has made an outstanding contribution to the improvement of the legal profession. The Unsung Hero Award is presented to a lawyer who has exhibited the highest standards of practice and commitment for the benefit of others. Nominees for both awards must be State Bar members in good standing and their contributions may have been made either during the past year or by virtue of cumulative effort or service. Materials submitted should include sufficient details about the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The Michigan State Bar Foundation has hired Jennifer S. Bentley as its next executive director. "Jennifer will help the Foundation meet new challenges ahead and sustain its leadership role in access to justice in Michigan," said Margaret Nichols, chairperson of the MSBF Executive Director Search Committee. Bentley joins the MSBF after serving for 20 years as a staff attorney and manager in several legal aid programs, most recently as Chief Development Officer for statewide nonprofit Michigan Advocacy Program, the umbrella organization for Legal Services of South Central Michigan, Farmworker Legal Services and several statewide advocacy programs including the Michigan Poverty... Continue reading
Posted Dec 12, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The Michigan Press Association Foundation has launched the Wade H. McCree Jr. Awards for the Advancement of Justice to recognize Michigan broadcast, print and online journalists whose work fosters greater public understanding of the values of our legal and judicial systems. The awards are named for Judge McCree, who was dedicated to advancing a greater understanding of the role of a free press in a free society. During a remarkable career that included service as a federal judge, law professor and Solicitor General of the United States, he touched the lives of millions of Americans. Judge McCree was an early... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2016 at SBM Blog
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Nominations are now open for major State Bar of Michigan awards that will be presented at the September 2017 Annual Meeting in Detroit. The Roberts P. Hudson Award goes to a person whose career has exemplified the highest ideals of the profession. This award is presented periodically to commend one or more lawyers for their unselfish rendering of outstanding and unique service to and on behalf of the State Bar, given generously, ungrudgingly, and in a spirit of self-sacrifice. It is awarded to that member of the State Bar of Michigan who best exemplifies that which brings honor, esteem and... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The American Bar Association Veterans Legal Services Initiative Commission and the Standing Committee on Legal Assistance for Military Personnel will co-host a free webinar, "Establishing and Enhancing Legal Clinics to Serve Veterans," at 1 p.m. on Dec. 14. The seminar is designed to inspire and assist civil legal aid organizations, law schools and bar associations in creating legal clinics to serve veterans in their communities. It will consist of a panel discussion, moderated by Antonia Fasanelli and including panelists Joel Teitelbaum, Patricia Roberts and Sara Sommerstrom, who will provide instruction on how to establish legal clinics in or near VA... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan will present a seminar, “Lawyer Trust Accounts: Management Principles and Recordkeeping Resources,” from 1:15-4:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at the State Bar of Michigan Michael Franck Building, located at 306 Townsend Street in Lansing. This half-day ethics seminar will feature presentations on how to ethically manage lawyer trust accounts and effectively use forms, checklists and other recordkeeping resources. The seminar, open to lawyers and their staff members, is an excellent way to learn more about Michigan Rules of Professional Conduct 1.15 and 1.15A. Participants will receive practical information as well as materials prepared by... Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2016 at SBM Blog
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A new State Bar of Michigan special committee will review and propose revisions to the 1985 Michigan Court Rules on the civil discovery process. Appointed in September 2016 by then SBM President Lori Buiteweg, the Special Committee on Civil Discovery Court Rule Review will address the expense and burden of civil discovery and will examine and recommend updates to technology considerations and the organization of rules. SBM Representative Assembly Immediate Past Chair Daniel Quick chairs the special committee, which held its first meeting in early November. “In a rapidly changing world, it is vital that these rules be updated to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 30, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan Alternative Dispute Section will host a forum on mediation 4 p.m. Dec. 15 at Varnum in Detroit. The goal of the event is to provide mediators and arbitrators with opportunities where they can share, network and learn from one another. The event will start with a presentation on "Early Mediation of Employment Disputes," by Earlene Baggett-Hayes, Richard Hooker and Sheldon Stark. The presentation will be followed by small group discussions about the timing of opening offers, managing extreme opening offers and counter-offers, explaining party justification/rationale for an offer, dealing with party/advocate impatience, techniques for responding... Continue reading
Posted Nov 14, 2016 at SBM Blog
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The State Bar of Michigan Probate and Estate Planning Section will host a seminar, "Planning Techniques for the Taxable Estate," at 9 a.m. on Dec. 1 at the Inn at St. John's in Plymouth. The Institute of Continuing Legal Education is co-sponsoring the seminar. Those in attendance will learn to secure clients' wealth in today's estate tax environment, get an expert overview of critical concepts and walk away with sample language to use in their practices. They will also learn to: Address portability issues Spot Generation-Skipping Tax (GST) implications Counsel clients on gifting programs that will achieve tax advantages Use... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2016 at SBM Blog