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  • 08/10/2015 10:02 PM | Deleted user
    Webinar: Inside Look at Attorney Fee Arbitrations

    Thursday, August 20, 2015, 12:00 noon- 1:30 p.m.

    This program offers 1.5 hours participatory MCLE credit; 1 hour legal specialization credit in Legal Ethics. You must register in advance in order to participate.

    An overview of the county mandatory fee arbitration/mediation programs and what the arbitrators/mediators are looking for from an experienced fee arbitrator and mediator with the San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Riverside county bar associations. Learn best practices to ensure that you are awarded all of your fees and traps that most lawyers fall into. Learn about the common ethical issues that arise in fee disputes and how to respond to them

    Speaker: Shirish Gupta is a mediator with JAMS. He volunteers as a fee arbitrator and mediator with the San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Riverside county bar associations, where he has resolved scores of fee disputes. He has served on fee disputes ranging from $500 to $1.5M.

    Shirish is the past chair of the State Bar Solo & Small Firm Section and the incoming co-Chair of the State Bar Council of Sections. Shirish is an Adjunct Professor at UC Hastings College of Law's Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution, where he teaches Negotiation. He's a 6-time Super Lawyer in ADR, The Recorder's Best Independent Mediator, a AAA Higginbotham Fellow, a SABANA Cornerstone award and NAPABA Best Under 40 award winner and an AYSO Coach of the Year.

    Webinars offer participatory credit and can be heard after their live air date - at your convenience.  

  • 08/03/2015 9:32 PM | Deleted user

    The San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association's 12th annual gala and networking evening at Sens Restaurant at 4 Embarcadero Center.  Go to SFPA events to see more or go to to register.

  • 06/13/2015 4:05 PM | Deleted user
  • 06/02/2015 8:21 PM | Deleted user



    Seven people pass test to become nation's first legal technicians

    Posted Jun 02, 2015 05:45 am CDT

    By Debra Cassens Weiss


    Michelle Cummings

    Michelle Cummings is one of seven people who passed Washington state's limited license legal technician exam. ABA Journal file photo by Tim Matsui.



    Seven people have cleared a major hurdle to become the nation’s first limited license legal technicians.

    Nine people took Washington state’s first exam for limited license legal technicians, and seven of them passed, according to LawSites by Robert Ambrogi, who wrote about Washington state’s new program for the ABA Journal.

    Washington is the first state with a program to allow limited license legal technicians to help litigants prepare legal documents and provide advice on legal procedures without a lawyer’s supervision. The seven applicants passed a test to work in domestic relations, the first practice area open to technicians in Washington’s program.

    The seven people will still have to show they have insurance and 3,000 hours of supervised experience. A licensing fee and trust account reporting are also required.

    Among those who passed is Michelle Cummings, who was featured in Ambrogi’s ABA Journal article. She told Ambrogi she planned to work to work at a two-lawyer law firm in Auburn, Washington. 

  • 05/31/2015 7:55 PM | Deleted user



    Upcoming Clinics at Hastings College of the Law

    You must register between 10:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. UC Hastings College of the Law
    198 McAllister St, 1st Floor (at Hyde)
    Louis B. Mayer Lounge

    Upcoming Saturday clinics in 2015: June 13


    Upcoming Clinics in Bay View/Hunter's Point

    You must register between 12:00 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.
    Providence Baptist Church of San Francisco
    1601 McKinnon Avenue (at Mendell)
    One block east of Third Street

    Upcoming Saturday clinics in 2015: June 27

    If you have questions, or would like more information, please call (415) 989-1616.


  • 04/28/2015 8:53 PM | Deleted user


    Full Report:




    The Civil Justice Strategies Task Force (“CJSTF”) has created a report that includes the following:

    • ·      An Acknowledgment by Luis Rodriguez, president of the State Bar of California and Chair of the CJSTF
    • ·      A brief introduction of the problem the task force set out to address
    • ·      A summary of key recommendations to develop an action plan with steps that should be taken to fill the justice gap and achieve true access to justice in California
    • ·      Excerpts from the testimony; and
    • ·      Individual reports from each of the CJSTF subcommittees


    Summary of Recommendations

    The State Bar should study the design of a pilot program, in one subject matter area, and, with input from the Supreme Court, address how the governance, oversight, and “licensing” would be handled. It is important to allow the time for the Court to have input at the early stages, rather than after design is complete.



    Now Group  - The “Now” Group was tasked with a review other current access environment in order to identify what approaches are working now and what may be scalable or can be replicated.


    “Now Group” Draft Recommendations

    ·      Funding: recommend that the State Bar boost promotion of the Justice Gap Fund in order to increase donations to the fund by lawyers and law firms.

    ·      Incubators/Modest Means: recommend that the State Bar track the trajectory of incubator participants; and recommend that the State Bar help create a framework (e.g., mentors, toolkits, forms, etc.) to assist modest means practitioners.

    ·      Unbundling: recommend that the State Bar do more to promote and incentivize limited scope representation.

    ·      Improved Coordination: recommend greater coordination between the State Bar and Judicial Council, including in efforts to link the various stakeholders involved in providing affordable legal services.

    ·      Civil Gideon: recommend that the State Bar support efforts to secure universal representation starting with the following four areas: Land Lord / Tenant, Family, Domestic Violence, Immigration; and recommend that State Bar help to market what’s working in the pilot projects, publicly support them, and help to scale them.


    New Group - The “New” Group focused on innovations that currently are being considered or implemented in other jurisdictions.


    “New Group” Draft Recommendations

    ·      Limited License Legal Technicians (LLLT): The State Bar should study the design of a pilot program, in one subject matter area, and, with input from the Supreme Court, address how the governance, oversight, and “licensing” would be handled. It is important to allow the time for the Court to have input at the early stages, rather than after design is complete.

    ·      Alternative Business Structures (ABS): The State Bar should monitor the ABS concept in other jurisdictions, with particular attention to the impact on pro bono and public impact litigation in jurisdictions that adopt these practices. Until this information is available to consider and understand, the Bar should not proceed with new rules or programs.

    ·      Re-engineering: recommendation for a pilot project, perhaps in landlord-tenant, using a joint working group of the bar, the courts, and perhaps relevant social scientists and tech people, to explore how the system could be redesigned to streamline the process, make it easier to use, and provide protection for the parties’ rights.

    ·      Navigators: A program should be designed to be piloted in one or more self-help centers, to provide volunteer assistance to self-represented litigants in attending hearings. Permission should be requested to have the navigator sit at counsel table with the litigant, but not to address the court. Based on experience in other jurisdictions, the focus should be on this as a volunteer program, not as a for-profit method of assistance.


    “Law School Debt” Group - This group examined the intersection of law school debt and access to justice.

    Law School Debt Draft Recommendations

    ·      Info Clearing house: The Bar should serve as a clearinghouse of information on student debt management and repayment programs and key student loan debt and repayment information.

    ·      California Young Lawyers Association: Working through CYLA, the Bar should develop mechanisms and new approaches to assist young lawyers in better understanding and proactively addressing the implications of their student debt obligations.

    ·      Creating an Enhanced Understanding of Student Debt Data, Concerns and Implications: The Bar should continue to put a spotlight on the issue of law school debt, promote an enhanced understanding of the link between student debt and broader community access to justice and public safety concerns, and assist others working to study, quantify and better define the implications of student loan indebtedness.

    ·      Assess Relationship to Misconduct: The Bar should work through its discipline arm to assess whether student debt is precipitating or contributing to lawyer misconduct.

    ·      Work with Law Schools: The Bar should use both its law school regulatory power as well as its established relationships with law school leaders to encourage enhanced counseling, strategies and disclosures in regard to student debt.

    ·      Participate in National Dialogue: The State Bar should consider ways to add its voice to the national dialogue seeking to develop and promote enhanced loan forgiveness and repayment approaches.

    ·      Encourage New Law School Cost Models: The State Bar should help encourage new and innovative models that seek to address law school cost concerns.

    ·      Implementation: The Board of Trustees should create a group to implement these recommendations


    Appendix A- List of Panelists and Witnesses at CJSTF Hearing

    Appendix B - Summary of Recommendations

    Appendix C - Excerpts from Witnesses at Hearings

    Appendix D - Reports of the CJSTF Subcommittees

  • 03/17/2015 8:59 PM | Deleted user

    Our fellow CAPA Association in Santa Rosa is presenting MCLEs on 3/28/15.  CAPA discount for all SFPA members: Redwood Empire MCLE event



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