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ISBA Statehouse Review for May 26, 2016

Posted on May 26, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

ISBA Director of Legislative Affairs Jim Covington reviews legislation in Springfield of interest to ISBA members. This week he covers FOIA (House Bill 4715), Juvenile justice (Senate Bill 2370), Counties Code (House Bill 4603), IMDMA cleanup (House Bill 3898), Cannabis civil penalties (Senate Bill 2228), Limited Liability Company Act (House Bill 4361), Income shares and child support (House Bill 3982), Land Trust Beneficiary Rights Act (House Bill 4697), Trust law (Senate Bill 2842) and Sex crimes against minors (House Bills 1127). More information on each bill is available below the video.

Supreme Court amends application deadlines for bar exam

Posted on May 26, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois Supreme Court announced Thursday changes to a rule that will slightly modify the deadlines to apply to take the Illinois bar examination.

The amendments to Supreme Court Rule 706, which governs the filing deadlines and fees to take the bar exam, will take effect July 1, 2016. The fees will not change under the rule amendment.

Under the amended rule, the on-time deadline to apply to take the February bar exam will be extended by approximately two weeks, from September 1 to September 15, and the final late deadline to apply for the February and July exams will be moved up by two weeks, from December 31 to December 15, and May 31 to May 15, respectively.

Congratulations to the winner of the Ruby Receptionists giveaway!

Posted on May 26, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

Congratulations to Alexas Collier for winning the Ruby Receptionists Giveaway. Don't forget to check out our Membership Appreciation Month site for upcoming promotions.

The winner receives 3 months of free virtual receptionist service (a value of up to $2,600) from our vendor partner Ruby Receptionists*!

CLE: Gain the Edge! Negotiation Strategies for Lawyers

Posted on May 25, 2016 by Morgan Yingst

You negotiate every day. In fact, your ability to effectively negotiate may be the most critical skill you possess, yet most negotiate instinctively or intuitively. Don’t miss this Master Series seminar in Chicago on June 22, 2016 that trains you to approach negotiations with a strategic mindset, allowing you to become a more effective lawyer. And make no mistake – no matter how much you’ve negotiated, you can still learn. Adding that one new tactic may be the difference between winning and walking away empty-handed. Topics include: the golden rules of negotiation; gaining leverage with alternatives; using objective criteria and timing to your advantage; techniques for gathering information; generating creative solutions; dealing with “negotiation games”; ethical considerations; and much more.

Best Practice: How to use webinars to market your practice

Posted on May 25, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

Asked and Answered

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

Q. I am the managing partner of a six attorney boutique estate planning practice located in Madison, Wisconsin. We had a great year last year financially as we have the last several years. However, this year (2016) we are off to a terrible start. Our new matter intakes are down by twenty-five percent. We have a very proactive marketing program - print advertisements, directory listings, top notch website, and we do seminars for prospective clients. I know other estate planning attorneys that do more seminars than we do. Should we be doing more seminars? I would appreciate your insight. 

Preventive regulation

Posted on May 24, 2016 by Mark S. Mathewson

Like most state agencies of its ilk, the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission traditionally has taken a reactive approach. Someone brings a complaint against an attorney and if it's found to be warranted, punishment is meted out-ranging from reprimand to disbarment.

Given the legal profession's challenging times in the 2010s, and based on successful models in jurisdictions including New South Wales, Australia, the Illinois ARDC is among the state-level attorney disciplinary agencies that are considering retooling their regulatory approach to make it more proactive.

This approach was dubbed Proactive Management-Based Regulation (PMBR) in a widely circulated 2013 Hofstra Law Review article written by University of Arizona law professor Theodore Schneyer. Proponents say it gives attorney-regulators the leeway and wherewithal to design self-assessment tools to prompt attorneys to evaluate their practices and improve them as needed. "You have the lawyer sit down with checklists: Have you thought about this? Have you thought about that?" says Jim Grogan, deputy administrator and chief counsel at ARDC.

Find out more about PMBR and how it's being used in other jurisdictions in the June Illinois Bar Journal.

4 smart student loan repayment strategies for new grads

Posted on May 24, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

Quick Takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court Civil opinions

Posted on May 20, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's top Illinois Supreme Court Civil opinions in Valfer v. Evanston Northwestern Healthcare, Fattah v. BimRichter v. Prairie Farms Dairy and Commonwealth Edison Company v. Illinois Commerce Commission.

Valfer v. Evanston Northwestern Healthcare

By Alyssa M. Reiter, Williams Montgomery & John Ltd.

This case explored the breadth of a hospital’s immunity under the Illinois Hospital Licensing Act. Following a peer review, the hospital revoked Dr. Valfer’s privileges to practice at the hospital. After Dr. Valfer sued, the hospital obtained summary judgment. The trial court agreed that the hospital was immune from damages under the Licensing Act and that it had complied with its bylaws and had not engaged in any willful and wanton conduct.