Two Great ISBA Member Benefits Sponsored by
ISBA Mutual Lawyers Malpractice Insurance
view counter
A Value of $1,344, Included with Membership
Free CLE
view counter
view counter

John T. Elsner elected as Chief Judge in DuPage

Posted on September 14, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Circuit Judges of the 18th Judicial Circuit, DuPage County, unanimously elected Judge John T. Elsner to the position of Chief Judge. Judge Elsner's term as Chief Judge will commence on Dec. 5, 2011. He succeeds Chief Judge Stephen J. Culliton.

John T. Elsner is a graduate of Lewis University College of Law. He was appointed as an associate judge in 1991 and was elected a Circuit Judge in 2000. Prior to his selection as Chief Judge, he had served in teh Law, Domestic Relations and Criminal divisions of the 18th Judicial Circuit Court.

Kennison appointed associate judge in 12th Circuit

Posted on September 14, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois Supreme Court has announced that the Twelfth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Victoria M. Kennison as an associate judge of the Twelfth Judicial Circuit.

Ms. Kennison received her undergraduate degree in 1991 from Illinois State University and her Juris Doctor in 1996 from John Marshall Law School. Ms. Kennison is currently affiliated with the Law Offices of Edward R. Jaquays in Joliet.

Best Practice: Succession strategies for solos and small firms

Posted on September 14, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

Asked and Answered

By John W. Olmstead, MBA, Ph.D, CMC

Q. I am a solo practitioner located in the Chicago suburbs. I have one staff member. I am 53 and have been practicing law for over 25 years. I try to limit my practice to estate planning and estate administration. However, I do have to take on other general practice type matters to stay busy. Practicing law by myself is beginning to take its toll on me - it gets lonely practicing alone, coverage and backup for clients is difficult, and I have the full burden of the worry 24/7. What do I do with the practice when I get older and reach retirement age? I have not taken a vacation in years. I have been thinking about the pros and cons of joining another firm? What are your thoughts?

A. One option would be to grow your practice internally. You could add a younger associate attorney. However, it sounds like you currently don't have the business that would support the position. Then you would have to train the mentor the assoicate and pray that once they become productive - two or three years down the road that they stay with you and don't leave for greener pastures.

Another option would be to bring in a more senior lateral attorney with experience and a book of business.

A third option would be to look around for another solo or small firm that is looking for someone to carry the firm into the next generation as a part of their succession strategy.

HP makes special offer on computers for ISBA members

Posted on September 14, 2011 by Chris Bonjean


Get your business essentials—reliable computing in a sleek design.

HP Compaq 100B Small Form Factor (XZ846UT#ABA)

ISBA member price:  $315.00 or less1

  • Genuine Windows® 7 Professional 64-bit
  • AMD Dual-Core E-350 1.6 GHz processor2with integratedAMD Radeon™ HD 6310 Graphics
  • 2 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 SDRAM
  • 500 GB hard drive3
  • HP SATA SuperMulti DVD writer4

Use your HP connection for better value:

CALL: (888) 202-4465 and mention STBAR.

For details on this offer and other specials for ISBA members, plus FREE U.S. Ground shipping, visit


Terms and Conditions

Illinois Lawyer Finder makes over 800 referrals in August

Posted on September 12, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois State Bar Association’s Lawyer Finder Service provides referrals to local lawyers Mondays through Fridays. The Service makes referrals in a number of areas of law. For the month of August 2011 ISBA helped people in need of legal services find lawyers in the following areas:

  • Administrative Law - 16
  • Animal Law - 1
  • Bankruptcy - 15
  • Business Law - 14
  • Civil Disputes - 74
  • Civil Rights - 31
  • Collection - 23
  • Consumer Protection - 18
  • Contracts – 11
  • Criminal Law - 64
  • Education Law - 16
  • Elder law - 5
  • Employment Law - 85
  • Estate/Probate Law - 38
  • Family - 154
  • Government Benefits - 14
  • Health Law - 13
  • Immigration - 3
  • Insurance Disputes - 12
  • Intellectual Property - 7
  • Miscellaneous - 1
  • Municipal Law - 16                
  • Personal Injury - 98
  • Real Estate - 55
  • Social Security - 17
  • Tax - 3
  • Workers Compensation - 5

These numbers do not include additional referrals made through the online Lawyer Finder service.

Want to be part of the ISBA Lawyer Finder Service?  Call (800) 252-8908 and ask for the Legal Department, or visit

Clients should call (800) 922-8757.

Family Defense Center to host 3rd Annual Benefit

Posted on September 12, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Family Defense Center will be hosting its Third Annual Benefit Event on September 25, 2011 form 4-7:30 at Hotel Allegro. 

The event is a cocktail party with hors d’oeuvres and dessert and both a silent and a live auction. Ticket for professionals is $125, with reduced rate tickets available for not-for-profit organizations. Registration is available by emailing or by calling (312) 251-9800 x10.

Online registration open for YLD Day at the Races

Posted on September 12, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois State Bar Association's Young Lawyers Division will host a Day at the Races on Saturday, Sept. 24. Admission is only $6 and includes admission to the park, a daily racing guide and a fabulous day of thoroughbred racing.

  • Saturday, Sept. 24, noon-5 p.m.
  • Arlington Park Racecourse, Arlington Heights (The ISBA group will be at picnic tables located by the Rail)
  • Deadline to register is Monday, Sept. 19

Register at

Advanced Legal Research on Fastcase -- free webinar

Posted on September 12, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

Looking to improve your Fastcase online legal research skills? Join us for the FREE webinar - Advanced Legal Research on Fastcase - on Wednesday, Sept. 21 from noon to 1:00 p.m. (Central) and learn how. (Please note: This course is free but only available to ISBA Members.) To register visit

Fastcase is ISBA's absolutely-free online legal research tool, brought to you by ISBA Mutual Insurance Company. To learn more, visit

Judicial vacancy announced in Jefferson County

Posted on September 9, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier announced Thursday that an application process has begun for a resident Circuit Court vacancy in Jefferson County, Second Judicial Circuit.

The resident Circuit vacancy is being created by the announced resignation of Circuit Judge Terry H. Gamber, effective December 31, 2011.

Under the Illinois Constitution, the Supreme Court holds the authority to fill interim judicial vacancies. Justice Karmeier uses a committee to evaluate and interview applicants before making a recommendation to the Court for vacancies in the Fifth Judicial District.

Applicants must submit a cover letter with the Requested Information of an Applicant Form to:

  • Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier
  • Supreme Court of Illinois
  • P.O. Box 266
  • Nashville, IL 62263

The form may be obtained from the office of Chief Judge Kyle Vantrease of the Second Judicial Circuit in Benton; or from Jefferson County Circuit Clerk John Scott; or from Resident Circuit Judge Terry H. Gamber at the Jefferson County Courthouse; or from the Jefferson County Bar Association; or from Justice Karmeier.

Applicants' cover letter and completed form must be received in Justice Karmeier's office no later than Friday, September 30, 2011. The person appointed to fill the vacancy will serve until the position is filled through the November 2012 General Election. The appointment will terminate December 3, 2012. To be eligible for appointment, a person must be a resident of Jefferson County at the time of the appointment.

ISBA Statehouse Review for the Week of Sept. 8

Posted on September 8, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

ISBA Director of Legislative Affairs Jim Covington reviews legislation of interest to ISBA members. This week he covers: The proposed rules affecting Medicaid eligibility proposed by the Department of Healthcare and Family Services to implement the federal Deficit Reduction Act; Public Act 97-578 requiring more and retroactive registration by sex offenders; Senate Bill 1040 that implements the federal Adam Walsh act for registration of sex offenders and Advance Directives' forms in English and Spanish on the Department of Public Health webpage.