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Best Practice Tips: Hiring Lawyers Who are Children of Law Firm Partners

Posted on March 27, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

Asked and Answered 

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

Q. I am an associate attorney in a nine-attorney firm in Orlando, Florida. There are five partners and four associates in the firm. I have been with the firm for four years and I am the senior associate. I am concerned about my future. Recently one of the partners announced that he was bringing his son, who recently graduated from law school, into the firm as an associate. Other partners have children in law school. I have hopes of becoming a partner in the firm in the next few years. I am afraid that with partners’ children in the firm, this may not happen. What are your thoughts on this matter?

Quick Takes for Your Practice: Five Things Lawyers Can Do to Improve Their Social Media Presence

Posted on March 26, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

Attorney Marie Sarantakis discusses five things lawyers can do to improve their social media presence. Tips include creating shareable content, posting early and often, asking for reviews, taking advantage of existing networks, and finding what works for you.  

Defusing the Courtroom

Posted on March 25, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

In a profession that requires people to argue all day, in an era when arguing easily turns to shouting, it’s time for some self-reflection. April’s Illinois Bar Journal asks judges throughout the state and at all levels whether we’re all doing enough to keep calm. It turns out things aren’t all that bad, even if we can always do better.

CLE: Traffic Law Nuts and Bolts—Spring 2019

Posted on March 25, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

Join us on April 12 for a full-day seminar in Naperville that gives you the nuts and bolts you need to assist your clients with their traffic law needs. Attorneys with basic practice experience who attend this seminar will better understand: what to expect during the initial client meeting; how standardized field sobriety testing can affect a DUI trial; how breath testing devices work; the admissibility of blood tests in DUI cases; the qualification and training requirements for drug recognition experts; how to rescind statutory suspensions; how to obtain documents from the Secretary of State; how dispositions may affect a client’s driving privileges; and the crossroads of immigration law and traffic-related offenses.

Quick Takes on Illinois Supreme Court Opinions Issued Thursday, March 21

Posted on March 22, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

The Illinois Supreme Court handed down opinions in six cases on Thursday, March 21. In People v. Webb, the court held that the unlawful use of weapons statute that provides that it is unlawful to possess or carry a stun gun in public is unconstitutional under the Second Amendment, and in People v. Drake, remanded a defendant’s appealed aggravated battery conviction to the circuit court for a retrial. In City of Chicago v. City of Kankakee, the court held that the Illinois Department of Revenue has the exclusive authority to audit disputed sales transactions and to distribute or redistribute resulting tax revenues due to any error. In 1550 MP Road LLC v. Teamsters Local Union No. 700, the court held that a union’s lease and purchase agreement that was in violation of the Property of Unincorporated Associations Act and the union’s bylaws was unenforceable. The court issued three opinions in Wingert v. Hradisky. In Van Dyke v. White, the court addressed whether the Illinois Secretary of State Securities Department has the authority to bring an administrative action against someone also subject to regulation by the Department of Insurance.

ISBA Board of Governors Underrepresented Vacancy Announcement

Posted on March 21, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

The ISBA president elect will appoint a member to one of the underrepresented seats of the Board of Governors at the May 2019 board meeting. The member appointed to this position will serve with full board member privileges for a three-year term beginning the first day of the 2019 Annual Meeting in Geneva, Wisconsin.

Pursuant to the association bylaws, eligible candidates for the underrepresented seat include members of the association with a status of, but not limited to, age, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, geography, areas and types of practice, and years of practice.

Illinois Supreme Court Issues New Rule Regarding Use of Restraints in Mental Health and Disability Cases

Posted on March 21, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

The Illinois Supreme Court has issued Supreme Court Rule 296, which requires that trial courts not use restraints on individuals involved in Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code proceedings unless the court conducts a separate hearing on the record as to the necessity for restraints.

The new rule is effective immediately. 

Rule 296, proposed by the 24-member Special Supreme Court Advisory Committee for Justice and Mental Health Planning, was adopted to ensure that a dignified judicial process is maintained for the respectful treatment of persons in mental health cases who are subjects of the court proceedings. 

ISBA Update: Be Wary of Spoofed Emails

Posted on March 21, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

In light of the fact that email spoofers have been targeting bar associations across the country, the ISBA is warning members to be vigilant in checking the email addresses of the people sending them messages.

Email spoofing is the creation of email messages with a forged sender address. For this reason, emails may appear to be from someone within the ISBA, but will not have their correct email address in the "From" field.

Best Practice Tips: Associate Attorney and Non-Equity Partner Compensation

Posted on March 20, 2019 by Rhys Saunders

Asked and Answered 

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

Q. I am the owner of a seven-lawyer insurance defense firm in downtown Chicago. Two of the lawyers are non-equity partners and four are associates. Currently I pay the associates a set salary and a performance bonus based upon annual billable hours over 1,800. Until last year, non-equity partners were paid in the same fashion, however non-equity partners received a few additional perks such as a firm credit card and a country club membership. Last year I changed the non-equity partner compensation system to focus on collected receipts rather than billable hours. Non-equity partners receive a salary and a performance bonus based upon working-attorney-collected-received above an established threshold and a delegation bonus.

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