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Young Lawyers to host Day at the Races on Sept. 24

Posted on August 26, 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 - contact

Transfer on Death Instrument Act signed into law

Posted on August 26, 2011 by James R. Covington
Public Act 97-555 (Bradley, D-Marion; Wilhelmi, D-Joliet) creates the Illinois Residential Real Property Transfer on Death Instrument Act. It allows an owner of real estate to transfer residential property on his or her death. The definition of "residential property" is borrowed from the Disclosure Act and the Mortgage Foreclosure Act.

The act requires that the owner (1) sign in front of a notary and two credible witnesses and (2) have the same mental capacity to execute a TODI as is required to make a will. This new Act will take effect January 1, 2012.

You may review the text of this Act here. 

ISBA Statehouse Review for the week of August 25

Posted on August 25, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

ISBA Director of Legislative Affairs Jim Covington reviews legislation of interest to ISBA members in his weekly ISBA Statehouse Review. This week he looks at Adoption forms (PA 97-493), the Illinois Personal Information Act (PA 97-483), Insurers must arbitrate small subrogation damages (PA 97-513), Cook County landlord and tenants (PA 97-470) and Jurors removed PA (97-436).

Illinois Bar Foundation to honor Newton Minow at 2011 Gala

Posted on August 25, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

Newton MinowThe Illinois Bar Foundation will honor former FCC Chair and longtime Sidley Austin managing partner Newton Minow as the 2011 Recipient of the Distinguished Award for Excellence.

The 2011 Gala will be held on Friday, Oct. 14, at the Four Seasons Hotel in Chicago. Raffle tickets are available now at for the following great prizes:

First Prize: Barcelona's Paradise -- Trip for two to Barcelona, Spain, for 7 days and 6 nights at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Arts Barcelona with economy class air. $8,000 value.

Second Prize: Broadway Bound -- Trip for two to New York, NY, for 4 days and 3 nights at the Plaza, including the Silver Entertainment Package (Broadway show of your choice), daily complimentary breakfast and economy class air. $5,100 value.

Third Prize: $2,500 Cash

To purchase tickets to this event or become an event sponsor, contact the IBF at (312) 726-6072 or visit


New IOLTA requirements effective September 1

Posted on August 25, 2011 by Mark S. Mathewson

The amended rule forbids non-interest bearing pooled accounts, imposes new recordkeeping requirements, and obliges banks to report IOLTA-account overdrafts. Read Helen Gunnarsson's summary of the changes in the September Illinois Bar Journal.

Best Practice: Law firm client development: Obtaining additional work from existing clients

Posted on August 24, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

Asked and Answered

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

Q.  I am the chair of our three person management committee. Our firm, now entering second generation, is a 17 attorney firm in Kansas City, Missouri. We represent businesses and other institutional clients. We have several of our founding partners in their 70s and as they phase back and slow down we are discovering that the younger generation of partners have not developed client development skills. What should we be doing to get more business? We are not sure we even know how?

A.  Research conducted over the years by numerous research organizations has shown that on average it costs five times as much (dollars/time investment) to get new clients than it does to get more business from existing clients. It just makes good business sense to leverage existing relationships.

Institutional clients are reducing the number of law firms that they use. According to BTI Consulting Group, corporations in the Fortune 1000 list are using 20% fewer core law firms than they did a year earlier. As a result fewer firms will be getting work from these companies and they will likely be the firms that successfully cross-sell their practices.

Recommendation From a Fortune 500 Client

Recently I was doing a telephone interview with the general counsel of a Fortune 500 company for our law firm client and I asked him if there was an opportunity for the law firm to get additional work in a practice area in which the company had no experience with the law firm previously and if an opportunity existed what the firm needed to do to earn the business. Here is his response

Juvenile Incarceration program to air on Illinois Law on Aug. 30

Posted on August 23, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

“Juvenile Incarceration: Alternatives/Placements/Visitation/Release,” a half-hour program produced by Illinois Law, will air on Chicago Access Network Television, Channel 21 in Chicago, on Tuesday, August 30 at 10 p.m. Illinois Law is a cable production of the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA).

Appearing on the show are (from left) Raymond G. Stubner, deputy chief of Juvenile Probation Services for the Department of Probation & Court Services in DuPage County; program moderator Hon. Cheryl Cesario, a judge in the Circuit Court of Cook County; and Hon. Thomas J. Riggs, a judge in the 18th Judicial Circuit in DuPage County.

CRFC to honor former Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas Fitzgerald

Posted on August 19, 2011 by Chris Bonjean

The Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago will be honoring former Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas R. Fitzgerald and Kraft Foods at its 2011 Bill of Rights in Action Award Benefit on Wednesday, Sept. 14. The CRFC Board of Directors gives the Bill of Rights in Action Award to individuals and organizations who privde models of citizenship to our nation's young people.

More information is available at