Senate Votes Overwhelmingly to Confirm Omaha Attorney as Nebraska Federal Judge
The U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly Monday to confirm Omaha attorney Robert Rossiter Jr. as Nebraska’s next federal judge. The 90-0 vote was a long time coming. The vacancy has been pending since U.S. District Judge Joseph Bataillon took senior status on Oct. 3, 2014. Full Article
Ricketts Appoints Otoe County Judge to Nebraska Supreme Court
Judge Jeffrey Funke answered his phone Tuesday morning a district court judge and ended the call accepting an offer from Gov. Pete Ricketts to join the state’s highest court. The governor on Tuesday announced Funke, whose current judicial district includes Otoe, Cass and Sarpy Counties, to replace retiring Supreme Court Judge William Connolly. Full Article
The Nebraska State Bar Association and Volunteer Lawyers Project are excited to announce a new opportunity for attorneys to provide pro bono service. NELegalAnswers is part of a nationwide ABA initiative allowing attorneys to provide pro bono services completely online. This service will allow low-income residents from across the state to login to the NELegalAnswers web service and ask a legal question. Attorneys will then have the chance to login, preview all open questions, and choose any they wish to answer. After answering the question, attorneys will be able to mark it complete and terminate communication on both ends. To view a brief pdf of PowerPoint slides giving more information click http://goo.gl/7dpmII to view a short video demonstration of the service click https://youtu.be/RAmHEnpB-bo.
Ohio Ethics Opinion on Lawyers Participation in Non-Lawyer Owned Legal Referral Services
Technology has and is rapidly changing the practice of law. The introduction of new legal service delivery models by companies like AVVO, Legal Zoom, Rocket Lawyer, etc. raises many questions for the profession, including questions about whether lawyer participation in these models is ethical. On June 3, 2016 the Ohio Supreme Court’s Board of Profession Conduct issued Opinion 2016-3: Lawyer Participation on Referral Services. The opinion states that a lawyer’s participation in an online, non-lawyer –owned legal referral service, where the lawyer is required to pay a “marketing fee” to a non-lawyer for each service completed for a client, is unethical. The opinion also identifies other areas where there is the potential violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct. Full Opinion
Nebraska/Iowa Solo Small Firm Conference, August 11 - 13, 2016
Sponsored by the Nebraska State Bar Association and The Iowa State Bar Association’s General Practice Section
Taking place at the alluring Ameristar Casino Hotel in Council Bluffs, Iowa, this event offers solo and small firm practitioners the opportunity to attend a CLE geared directly to their type of practice. That's right. A whole conference dedicated to you and your practice! Complete Conference Information
- Dustin Cole, Master Practice Advisor and President of Attorneys Master Class, is one of the nation’s leading advisors to law firms and lawyers. He has educated over 15,000 attorneys in CLE programs nationally and has worked with over 200 firms and more than 1000 individual attorneys in 30 states to help them increase revenues and deal successfully with change.
- Robert Clements is Co-Founder, Strategic Marketing Director, and General Counsel for Benchmark Business Group, LLC. In a more holistic approach to the practice of law, Bob has guided many business owners through difficult organizational, planning and financial issues, and has served as a facilitator and mediator in numerous business cases.
- Mary E. Vandenack is founding and managing partner of Vandenack Williams LLC in Omaha. Mary is a frequent writer and speaker on tax, benefits, asset protection planning, and estate planning topics as well as on improving the delivery of legal services, law firm marketing, and increased access to the under-served.
Sections Sizzle in the Summer
Seven NSBA sections are offering CLEs this summer. On June 30 the Juvenile Law Section and NSBA are offering GAL training in Scottsbluff. The Annual Family Law Section Seminar is July 8, sponsored by the Family Law Section. The Advanced Estate Planning Institute organized by the Real Estate, Probate and Trust Section is set for July 14-16 in Colorado. The new Health Law Section is offering its first stand-alone seminar on July 27. Environmental Issues in Commercial Property Transactions is set for July 29. The seminar is co-sponsored by the Bank Attorneys Section and the Natural Resources and Environmental Law Section. Registration will open soon for an Aug 16 Administrative Law Seminar offered by the Government and Administrative Practice Section. Most seminars are offered in-person and via distance learning.
NetWORKS! – NSBA’s Professional Networking Group
NSBA is offering an easy and enjoyable new way to expand your professional contacts. NetWORKS! will match interested lawyers for one-to-one coffee or lunch every two months. It will be up to the lawyers to schedule a convenient time. This new group is open to all voluntary NSBA members except law students. The primary purpose of the group is to promote the development of collegial professional relationships among group members.
NSBA will pilot NetWORKS! in the Omaha area if at least 30 NSBA members volunteer to give it a try. If the Omaha group is a success, Lincoln and Greater Nebraska groups will be added. It will be free for the rest of this year and likely will have modest dues longer term. Members will be required to complete their NSBA online profiles because the matching software program pulls member data from the profiles.
If you want to sign up for the Omaha pilot, please contact Lorrie Benson. More details about NetWORKS! are on the NSBA website under Member Info.
July 13, 2016, Application Deadline Set for District Court Judge Vacancy, Third Judicial District
According to Supreme Court Justice William B. Cassel, the Judicial Nominating Commission for District Judge in the 3rd Judicial District (consisting of Lancaster County) will hold a public hearing in the Supreme Court Courtroom, Room 2200, State Capitol Building, Lincoln, Nebraska, beginning at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, August 4, 2016. The primary place of office for the judicial vacancy is Lincoln, Lancaster County, Nebraska. At the hearing, the Commission will receive information on the qualifications of candidates to fill the vacancy in the office of District Judge due to the retirement of Judge Steven D. Burns, effective May 31, 2016. Full Press Release
Job Opportunity: Staff Attorney - Legal Aid Grand Island
Legal Aid of Nebraska, the statewide provider of free civil legal services to low-income Nebraskans, seeks a Staff Attorney for its Grand Island office. Be a part of making justice happen for low-income Nebraskans! We are looking for an individual who is interested in providing high quality legal assistance in Hall County, Nebraska and surrounding communities. The successful applicant will have a law degree and good research, writing, litigation and communication skills. The successful applicant should also have a demonstrated interest or experience in advancing goal of equal justice for all. Complete Job Description
Legal Aid of Nebraska offers excellent supervision, training and support, state-of-the-art technology, and team-focused work environments. Student loan assistance repayment may be available assuming eligibility for Legal Aid’s repayment program. Experience-based competitive salary. Bonus pay for relevant bilingual capability. Excellent benefits package, including pension. Must be admitted to Nebraska bar or out-of-state bar with pending waiver application to Nebraska bar required. Send cover letter, resume, references, and a writing sample limited to 5 pages to: Jennifer Gaughan, Director of Litigation and Advocacy, at email@example.com. Position open until filled. Legal Aid of Nebraska is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Recent Supreme Court Opinions
Week of June 24, 2016
Week of June 17, 2016
For a complete listing of recent opinions, visit the Nebraska Judicial Branch Website.
Greater Nebraska Golf Scramble - Thank You
NSBA would like to thank all the sponsors and the 89 golfers who attended the Greater Nebraska Golf Scramble at The Prairie Club in Valentine, NE on June 3. 2016. Nearly $16,000 was raised for the Volunteer Lawyers Project!
Slide Presentations 101 for Lawyers
By Catherine Sanders Reach, Originally Published in Attorney at Work
Presentation technology has come such a long way, “Death by PowerPoint” should be a thing of the past. How can you be sure the new visual and audio aids you are using enhance your message — and don’t detract from it? In addition to having a well-organized and thoughtful presentation, here are a few basics and best practices to keep in mind as you prepare and use slide decks and other presentation tools. Full Article
Sharing Fees with a Lawyer Outside the Firm is OK as Long as Certain Ethics Rules are Followed
By David L. Hudson Jr, Originally Published in ABA Journal Magazine
One of the many stories about Huey P. Long—the legendary "Kingfish" who reigned over Louisiana politics during the 1920s and '30s—goes like this: When the future governor and U.S. senator sat for his oral bar exam in 1915, he faced questioning from noted admiralty lawyer George Terriberry, who asked him at one point what he knew about admiralty and maritime law. "Nothing at all," answered Long. Full Article
Purge Toxic Clients from Your Practice, Part 1
By Mike O'Horo, Originally Published in Attorney at Work
To dramatically enhance your productivity, zero in on the biggest source of stress and wasted time: toxic clients. Some lawyers fight to hold on to business at all costs. After all, it’s an article of faith that it’s easier to retain a client than to win a new one. As a result, many lawyers are loath to fire clients, even when it’s the right move. Full Article
Member Benefit Spotlight: InterCall Conference Calling
Does your practice rely on conference calling services? Make sure you aren’t paying more than you have to for conference call services. Through your NSBA membership, you have access to InterCall, which offers industry-leading features and ease of use for only .0225 cents a minute. With InterCall's legal conferencing solutions, you get services that improve your communication with clients and co-workers so you can be more efficient. From holding a conference call at a moment’s notice to collaborating on briefs and contracts to recording and transcribing depositions, we offer everything you need to streamline projects and eliminate time constraints. To foster employee development, we provide video and web conferencing services that let you conduct remote training and continuing education to members of your firm. By using InterCall's audio, web and video conferencing solutions, you save time, increase productivity and enable collaboration from anywhere at any time. For more information contact Jerrell Wilkinson, Dedicated Nebraska Meeting Consultant, Ph: (773) 867-7067.
The LawPay Security Series- Security Step 1: Identify Your Cyber Assets
Your path to a more secure law firm starts today! Our mission with LawPay’s Security Series is to promote better data protection in law firms through simple, manageable steps. With the increase of cyber-crime and the associated risk to your firm, securing your assets is more important than ever. As a leading payment provider for the legal industry, we are in a unique position to share our knowledge and expertise in data security with our partners and colleagues. Full Article