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

Phi Alpha Delta Law to honor John K. Norris at St. PADdy's Day Luncheon

Posted on March 8, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

The Chicago Alumni Chapter of Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, International, will host its annual St. PADdy's Day Luncheon will be held on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 at Petterino's Restaurant located at 150 N. Dearborn Street in the banquet facility (basement entrance on Randolph Street).  The event begins at 11:30 a.m. and ends by 1 p.m.  John K. Norris will receive the Mary Ann G. McMorrow Service to the Legal Profession Award at the luncheon. 

Fill out and return the registration form to attend the event.

ISBA Mutual celebrates 25th Anniversary with donations to charities

Posted on March 7, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

In celebration of its 25th anniversary, ISBA Mutual Insurance Company, headquartered here, will make financial donations to several bar associations statewide, as well as provide donations to local charities on behalf of ISBA Mutual members, according to Jon W. DeMoss, president and chief executive officer.

The donations are part of a 2013-14 statewide campaign, themed “We Are You,” whose purpose is to build awareness of the company and its successful track record. When it was founded in 1988 by members of the Illinois State Bar Association, ISBA Mutual became one of the first bar-related insurance companies in the U.S. to offer professional liability insurance to its members as a way to control the skyrocketing cost of premiums. For the 9th consecutive year, ISBA Mutual declared a dividend in 2013, returning $1.7 million to policyholders, representing an average of ten percent of each policyholder’s premium.

In addition to liability insurance, ISBA Mutual offers surety bonds and a risk management program. ISBA Mutual hosts an annual Continuing Legal Education program for policyholders, which is free to all attendees who also receive a $100 credit towards their premium.

ISBA Mutual is governed by a board of directors composed of the current and past leadership of the Illinois State Bar Association. Further information is available at

Illinois Lawyer Finder results for February 2014

Posted on March 6, 2014 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 February 2014, ISBA helped people in need of legal services find lawyers in the following areas:

Here are the results for February 2014:

Still time to register for "Celebrating Women in the Profession" luncheon - and a thank you to sponsors

Posted on March 6, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Joan C. Williams, a law professor and prolific author on work and family issues, will be the keynote speaker at a “Celebrating Women in the Profession” luncheon hosted by the Illinois State Bar Association on Thursday, March 13, at the Union League Club, 65 W. Jackson, Chicago.

ISBA would like to thank sponsors for this program, including:


  • Burke Wise Morrissey & Kaveny
  • Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education


  • ISBA Mutual Insurance Company
  • Winston & Strawn LLP


  • North Shore LAW

ISBA Statehouse Review for the week of March 6, 2014

Posted on March 6, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

ISBA Director of Legislative Affairs Jim Covington reviews legislation in Springfield of interest to ISBA members. In this episode he covers Victims’ rights amendment (HJRCA 1), Electronic surveillance and bail bonds (House Bill 3744), Court-services fee (House Bill 5453), Disabled adults (Senate Bill 2954) and The Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act (Senate Bill 1941). More information on each bill is available below the video.

The Medical Cannabis Act and Illinois DUI law

Posted on March 5, 2014 by Mark S. Mathewson

For the first time, people can legally drive in Illinois with cannabis in their systems, as long as they aren't impaired. But the Medical Cannabis Act introduces inconsistencies into DUI law that are likely to inspire litigation. Here's an overview from the March Illinois Bar Journal.

Ethics Question of the Week: Can I represent a client in a field of law I'm not familiar with?

Posted on March 5, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Q. A client has asked me to handle her divorce, but I’ve never done one. Can I ethically represent her?

A. Lawyer competence to handle any given matter is addressed in RPC 1.1. Comment [2] provides that “a lawyer need not necessarily have special training or prior experience to handle legal problems of a type with which the lawyer is unfamiliar” and that “a lawyer can provide adequate representation in a wholly novel field through necessary study.” In addition, Comment [4] says that “a lawyer may accept representation where the requisite level of competence can be achieved by reasonable preparation.”  A novice lawyer could also associate with a lawyer of “established competence” in the field at issue in order to competently represent the client.

ISBA members can browse past ISBA Ethics Opinions at

CLE: DUI and Traffic Law Updates 2014

Posted on March 5, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Don’t miss this discussion in Fairview Heights on Friday, March 14th regarding the increasingly complex issues occurring in traffic law and DUI court, as well as the new case law and legislation mandated by the Illinois General Assembly! State’s attorneys, public defenders, judges, and attorneys practicing in the DUI and traffic courts – with all levels of experience – who attend this full-day seminar will better understand: the jury selection process in DUI and misdemeanor cases; how the traffic law arena is affected by the legalization of medical marijuana; the ethical obligations you have as a traffic law attorney; how new legislation has impacted the defense of Operating Under the Influence; and much more!

The program is presented by the ISBA Traffic Laws and Courts Section and qualifies for 5.50 hours MCLE credit, including 0.75 hour Professional Responsibility MCLE credit (subject to approval).

Click here for more information and to register.

Best Practice: Lawyer, businessperson or both?

Posted on March 5, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Asked and Answered

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

Q. I am an attorney in Miami. I have been out of law school for five years. I worked with a small firm for a year and then went solo and have been doing contract work for other law firms for the past four years. For the past year I have been trying to get a position as an associate with a small firm - but have not had any success. Recently, I had an interview with a 2 attorney (2 partners in their early 70s) firm and I thought the interview went well - I believe that I impressed them with my legal knowledge and skills. However, I did not get the position. They advised me that they were looking for less of a lawyer and more of a business person. What am I doing wrong?