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You Need to Know

Five seats open on bar board

Ballots to vote for candidates for five open seats on the State Bar Board of Governors will be mailed April 30. Eligible voters include any active member of the State Bar who maintains his or her principal office for the practice of law within the bar district in which there is a vacancy.

For the first time, the bar will conduct a “hybrid” election offering voting by mail and electronically. All eligible voters will receive a ballot packet in the mail. Those who choose to vote online will be asked to provide their bar number and a voter PIN number printed on the ballot.

Two seats will be vacant in District 7 (Los Angeles) and the remaining vacancies for single seats are in District 2, (Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Napa, Sacramento, Solano, Sonoma, Tuolumne and Yolo counties); District 3 (Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Santa Clara counties) and District 4 (Marin and San Francisco counties).

Voting will end July 1.

Lawyer members are elected for three-year terms and will assume their offices in September.

Bar will offer low cost career change workshops and a free webinar

The State Bar Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP) will offer a four-week workshop in Los Angeles to help lawyers learn strategies for taking their career to the next level.

The program includes advice on identifying career goals, creating a game plan, developing skills to eliminate barriers to success and connecting with a supportive community of other professionals.

The sessions, from May 19 to June 9, last two hours, once a week (Wednesday evening). The fee is $90.

The LAP also will offer a free half-day webinar (live simulcast) on April 30th in conjunction with the Practising Law Institute. This program, presented by Hindi Greenberg of Lawyers in Transition, is called 300 Things You Can Do With a Law Degree and will address the entire range of career options for legal professionals and the process of transitioning to a new career (legal or otherwise). To register, visit

To register or obtain additional information on the four-week workshop in Los Angeles, contact Richard Carlton, 415/538-2355, or

San Fernando Valley, Riverside fee arb trainings scheduled

Free training session for prospective and current volunteer attorneys who arbitrate attorney-client fee disputes for mandatory fee arbitration programs will be held in Riverside May 14 and Chatsworth May 20. Both offer 2.75 hours of MCLE credit, including one hour of legal ethics.

Non-lawyers also are encouraged to attend.

Speakers will address recent developments in fee arbitration, as well as how to write an enforceable award, arbitrator disclosure requirements and the statute of limitations.

Both trainings will be held from 2 – 5 p.m. To reserve a space at the Riverside training, call 951/682-1015 or e-mail To reserve a space at the Chatsworth session, contact Aileen Jimenez at the 818/227-0490, ext. 100, or

For additional information (not RSVP), contact Jill Sperber at 415/538-2023.

Diversity and Education Pipeline award nominations are being accepted

Nominations for the State Bar Diversity Award are being accepted for individual attorneys, law firms and bar associations. The bar also is accepting nominations for education pipeline programs that raise student awareness the justice system and careers in the law.

Forms and guidelines can be found at

Nominations must be e-mailed, faxed or postmarked by April 30.

Apply for LSC grants

The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced the availability of competitive grant funds to provide civil legal services to eligible clients during calendar year 2011. A Request for Proposals (RFP) and other information about the LSC grants competition, including filing dates and submission requirements, will be available at on April 8.

Grants are available for only specified service areas. A listing of those areas for each state and the estimated grant amounts will be included in Appendix-A of the RFP.

Applicants must file a Notice of Intent to Compete (NIC) in order to participate in the competitive grants process. The NIC is available from the RFP.

E-mail inquiries may be sent to

Fee information is online

Members may find the audited Statement of Expenditures of Mandatory Membership Fees for 2008 on the State Bar’s Web site ( The statement shows how State Bar membership fees are spent.

In addition, there is an explanation about the $10 deductions to membership fees and the procedures for arbitration under Keller v. State Bar of California, 496 U.S. 1 (1990).

A copy also may be obtained by writing to: Office of the Secretary, The State Bar of California, 180 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94105.

E-mail addresses required

All State Bar members were required to provide an e-mail address to the State Bar by Feb. 1, under a new rule of court approved by the Supreme Court. Anyone who has not done so can go to; log on to My State Bar Profile in the left menu and follow the prompts.

Lawyers are statutorily required to keep their addresses updated within 30 days of a move. Under new rule 9.7, all address changes must be completed electronically through My State Bar Profile.

Inactive lawyers over 70 are exempt from the new requirement.

Questions may be directed to 1-888-800-3400.

Two legal aid agencies are looking for board members

The boards of directors of California Indian Legal Services (CILS) and California Rural Legal Assistance (CRLA) are seeking applications for one open position on each board.

The 13-member CILS board meets four times a year. One three-year position is open, beginning Sept. 1. The application deadline is April 2.

One two-year position will be open in August on the CRLA board with a possibility of re-appointment for two additional terms. Its 45-member board meets four times a year. The application deadline is April 30.

Interested attorneys should apply by letter, listing the reasons they should be appointed. A resume outlining work experience, community activity and educational background must be included. The materials should be sent to Chris Zupanovich, 180 Howard St., San Francisco, CA 94105-1639; or Questions may be directed to 415/538-2534.

Malpractice insurance disclosure required

Under Rule of Professional Conduct 3-410, which took effect Jan. 1, lawyers who do not carry malpractice insurance must notify their clients in writing — under most circumstances — that they are not insured.

Notification must be made at the time a client hires the lawyer if it is “reasonably foreseeable” that the representation will exceed four hours. If the insurance coverage later lapses, the attorney must tell the client within 30 days of the time he or she is no longer insured.

The rule does not apply to government lawyers and in-house counsel nor to legal services provided in an emergency to avoid prejudice to a client’s rights or interest. It also does not apply if the lawyer previously informed the same client that he or she was not insured.


CalBar Connect cards sent with bar cards

State Bar members received a CalBar Connect Savings Card with their bar cards this year, entitling them to discounts at Joie de Vivre hotels and Hertz rental cars. The cards carry the discount codes needed to obtain member discounts.

Guests at Joie de Vivre hotels can receive a 15 percent discount on their stay through the bar’s affinity program. The hotel chain includes 35 boutique hotels throughout California.

Bar members also can receive discounted rental car rates from Hertz.

The bar also partners with T-Mobile, the nation’s No. 4 wireless carrier, and CoreVault, a company that offers online data backup and recovery, in addition to Bank of America, UPS, Office Max and several insurance companies.

Go to for complete details.

T-mobile and Hertz are currently offering seasonal promotions at CalBar Connect. Visit the “What’s New” page for details on these promotions and other available discounts and special programs

Opt out of lists

Attorneys who wish to remove their names from lists the State Bar provides to qualified outside entities may do so by logging on to Member Login at After registering with My State Bar Profile, go to “Account Information” and select “Update my mailing preferences (opt out).”

Members also may e-mail their opt out request to

Include your bar number.

Sign up for e-briefs

The State Bar offers e-briefs, a short summary of recent news developments or announcements of interest to lawyers. The electronic mailings are provided on a timely basis, usually twice a month. To subscribe, go to “e-briefs” listed under “News” on the home page of the State Bar’s Web site,