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IndyBar to Offer Labor and Employment Guidance for Local Small Businesses

For a small business owner, navigating labor and employment laws can be one of the most difficult and potentially costly parts about doing business. A program offered by the IndyBar Labor & Employment Law Section seeks to lessen this burden by providing employers with valuable tips and information in an informal—and affordable—setting.

The Small Business Employment Law Seminar will take place Thursday, Nov. 13 from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Indianapolis Bar Association (IndyBar) office at 135 N. Pennsylvania Street, Suite 1500. Cost per attendee is $25.

The program is designed for smaller employers—including solo practitioners and lawyers in small firms—that may not have their own human resources professionals or employment counsel. Presenters will help attendees understand which employment laws apply to them, best practices for hiring and discipline, wage issues and essentials for personnel documentation.

Program planners from within the Labor and Employment Law Section hope that the inaugural event proves to be a beneficial resource for small businesses and smaller employers.

“Employment law impacts a large percentage of the population on a daily basis—as employees and as employers,” says Christopher Murray, an attorney with Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC and one of the program planners. “The IndyBar’s Labor and Employment Law Section believes that increasing general knowledge and understanding of employment law is a valuable public service.”

Additional details and online registration can be found online here. Pre-registration is not required. A light breakfast will be provided.

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2015 Pro Bono Clerkship in Consumer Law Available

Heartland Pro Bono Council is currently seeking candidates for a 2015 Pro Bono Clerkship in Consumer Law. This one-year unpaid clerkship starts in Jan. 2015 and is open to any attorney licensed to practice in Indiana. Priority will be given to newer attorneys, attorneys practicing in Marion County and attorneys who want to focus their practices in the area of consumer law.

Each clerk will be required to accept at least two pre-screened pro bono cases from Heartland and to participate in a minimum number of consumer law clinics being held at the John H. Boner Community Center. In exchange, each clerk will receive:

Eight or more hours of free CLE in consumer law with a faculty consisting of consumer law attorneys and judicial officers of the Marion Superior Court who regularly preside over consumer cases;

Access to the Marion County civil court judicial officers via quarterly “brown bag” lunch meetings (no discussion of pending cases);

An experienced consumer law mentor;

Malpractice insurance coverage for the pro bono cases; and

Hands-on experience with consumer law cases.

Applications, which can be found online at heartlandprobono.org, are due by Nov. 14, 2014. Applications can be emailed to Dana Luetzelschwab at dana.luetzelschwab.ilsi.net, or mailed to the Heartland Pro Bono Council at 1800 N. Delaware St., Suite 1800, Indianapolis, IN 46204.

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Abrams: Marion County Judicial Elections—Where Do We Go From Here?

By Jeffrey A. Abrams, Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP

IBA-Abrams-Jeffrey1

Judge Richard Young’s ruling that the current practice of electing Marion County judges is unconstitutional has created quite the stir in Marion County. We all know that the election recently held Nov. 4 has taken place as planned. There is still an ancillary suit trying to set aside that election for the judges. While some commentators do not believe the ancillary suit will change how the judges were selected on Tuesday, Judge Young’s decision certainly will change how judges will be selected in the next election in 2018.

The IndyBar has looked at this issue for quite some time dating back to the early 1990s in an effort to establish a process where we could continue to have the same quality of judges currently on the bench while protecting the financial integrity of those attorneys who run for judge and creating an independent bench that can withstand scrutiny from the public. Historically, each candidate paid a fee to his or her party to defray the costs of the slating process. Some commentators refer to it as a “slating fee” while others were quick to report that there were substantial costs incurred by each party to follow the process that had been established many years ago. There were rumors that some candidates had to obtain a loan and provide a second mortgage on his or her home to obtain the money necessary to pay the fee. Some argued that without being slated, the candidate had a very slim chance of being elected to the bench. It is my understanding that over the past 10 years, only a couple of people have been elected who were not slated.

With the current process being knocked out by Judge Young, there are several options available to the general assembly who must establish the law for the next election. They range from a purely electoral vote with the candidates receiving the most votes being elected to serve as our judges, to a merit-based process whereby any number of groups or people could have the ultimate say on who is selected to serve as a judge in Marion County. Some states allow the governor to make this decision, while others may have a branch of the general assembly, while others have a bipartisan committee consisting of lay professionals and attorneys coming together to choose which judges should serve on the bench. Once a judge has been selected to serve, his or her retention could be governed by a vote of the general population or a review by a commission similar to the designation of their initial selection.

The IndyBar is supportive of establishing an appropriate process that ensures the continued service by outstanding judges for all of our clients and the community in general. Our goal is not to dictate the process for establishing our judges or the actual determination of the process, but to be part of the discussions with all interested parties. We want to be able to actively support whatever law is proposed to the extent it is well conceived and intended to achieve the ultimate goal of continuing strong, excellent judicial decisions from our bench. How we get there is still open for discussion and when it may be achieved is anybody’s guess. The current legislative session in January has significant hurdles for the General Assembly so it is not anticipated to be high on anybody’s radar. However, the likelihood of people getting together and discussing the issue during the summer and early fall could very well present a proposal for consideration in 2016. Stay tuned as all interested groups parlay their thoughts on this process.

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miniBar Talk: This Week’s Top Post!

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So You Want to Be a Social Chair: An Interview for Interested Applicants

The position of social chair is currently available on the Commercial & Bankruptcy Law Section Executive Committee for 2015 and statements of interest are due by Friday, November 14. We talked to current Social Chair Dustin DeNeal of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP to learn more about this role.

IndyBar: How long have you been on the Executive Committee and what was your role?
DeNeal: I just finished my first year on the Executive Committee. I served as social chair.

IndyBar: What is your favorite part about being on the Executive Committee?
DeNeal: The people. Our Executive Committee is comprised of high-performing but fun people who genuinely like what we do.

IndyBar: What are your responsibilities as a member of the Executive Committee?
DeNeal: The main responsibilities of our social chair are to 1) organize the annual holiday party and 2) support the program chair in organizing and ensuring the success of our multiple CLEs. This past year, I also helped organize retirement celebrations for two bankruptcy judges.

IndyBar: How has your involvement impacted you as a professional?

DeNeal: I believe it has helped increase my credibility with the local bar and helped strengthen working relationships.

IndyBar: What can Executive Committee members expect for 2015?

DeNeal: We have a consistently high-performing and friendly section. I don’t expect that to change any time soon.

If you are interested in more information about the Commercial & Bankruptcy Law Section Executive Committee opening, click here. If you would like to be considered for the 2015 Social Chair, please contact Chris Walsh (cwalsh@indybar.org) at the IndyBar by Friday, November 14.

Information about Executive Committee openings for the Litigation Section, Women and the Law Division and Young Lawyers Division can be found on their pages at those links. The deadlines for applications are as follows:

  • Litigation Section: Tuesday, November 11 at noon
  • Women and the Law Division: Monday, November 10
  • Young Lawyers Division: Monday, November 10 at 11 a.m.


To subscribe to more Commercial & Bankruptcy Law Section news like the article above, click here to update your news subscriptions. Your news subscriptions appear in your bi-weekly E-Bulletin and on your personalized IndyBar homepage.

Keep an eye out for our newest e-newsletter for members, Bar Talk, featuring the top IndyBar posts each month!

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Upcoming Pro Bono Trainings

Interested in getting involved in local pro bono programs? Upcoming trainings offered by both the Indianapolis Bar Foundation and the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic combine training to prepare you to serve with low cost—or free—continuing legal education credits.

Indianapolis Bar Foundation

What IndyBar Volunteers Should Know to Assist Families with Special Education IEPs
Thursday, Nov. 13, 8:15 to 9:15 a.m.
Joseph Maley Foundation Enrichment Center (7128 Lakeview Parkway West Drive)
1.0 CLE
Cost: Free to individuals who agree to volunteer/$35 IndyBar Members/$70 Non-Members
Register here.

Thousands of Indy area children face extra hurdles in education because of physical, cognitive or emotional/behavior challenges. Federal and state laws entitle all children to a free and appropriate education; some children need an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) to ensure that they receive the appropriate education for their ability. This session, offered in partnership with the Joseph Maley Foundation, the 2014 Indianapolis Bar Foundation Impact Fund recipient, will train attendees so they will be able to help educate parents and guardians on education rights in parents meetings, including substantive, procedural and practical rights; what the process is for securing an IEP; and will provide an overview of applicable sources of law.

Cost is free for those who volunteer to work five hours preparing for and presenting at parent informational meetings. This introductory-level seminar is geared to providing the basics to allow volunteers to begin assisting JMF with this program mission of educating and empowering parents. This seminar will include significant written and electronic reference material for future use. Intermediate and advanced seminars will be offered in the future.

Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic

Visit the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic website at nclegalclinic.org to find additional details and online registration for both NCLC programs.

Immigrant Justice Program Training
Friday, Nov. 14, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Faegre Baker Daniels LLP (300 N. Meridian St.)
6.5 CLE, including 1.0 Ethics.
Cost: $160 per person/$10 for individuals who take an Immigrant Justice Program Case Referral
Register here.

This seminar will begin with an introduction of the Follow to Join applications (I-730) and ideas behind immigration law and asylum law, so the attendee will better understand the remainder of the CLE.Speakers will present on topics such as the Affirmative Asylum, Defensive Asylum and Witholding of Removal/Convention against Torture. The afternoon will cover Employment Authorization Documents and Travel Documents for Asylees, and Ethics Rules (1.1, 1.3 and 1.4) will be presented by Chuck Kidd, Deputy Executive Secretary at the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission.

Victim Justice Program Training
Monday, Dec. 1, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Barnes & Thornburg LLP (11 S. Meridian St.)
6.0 CLE, including 1.0 Ethics
Cost: $160 per person/$10 for individuals who take a Victim Justice Program Case Referral
Register here.

Attendees will learn about protection orders, processes, procedures and dissolutions. That will be followed by a more in-depth presentation, “beyond the no contact order,” the firearms surrender, and other complex issues. Attendees will learn about divorce mediation and about how to use expert testimony to illustrate the client’s trauma. Matters regarding children in common, such as child support, custody, and parenting time will be discussed. The session will conclude with ethical issues every domestic violence lawyer ought to be familiar with.

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Posted in Indianapolis Bar Foundation, Upcoming Events, Volunteer/Pro Bono Opportunity | Leave a comment

IndyBar Member Headlines: Thursday, November 6

Share your news with the IndyBar by contacting Mary Kay Price, Director of Marketing & Communications, at mprice@indybar.org.

Jeffrey J. Graham has been appointed Bankruptcy judge in the Southern District of Indiana. Graham previously was a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP in Indianapolis and was the chair of the IndyBar Commercial & Bankruptcy Law Section in 2008.

Olga Voinarevich has joined Ice Miller LLP as an associate in the litigation and intellectual property group.

James Banister has joined Ice Miller LLP as an associate in the health care and business groups.

Kristen J. Davee has joined Lewis Wagner LLP as an associate and is focusing on commercial and real estate acquisitions.

Jonathan W. Padish has joined Lewis Wagner LLP as an associate and practices in the complex litigation group.

Barath S. Raman has joined Lewis Wagner LLP as an associate and his practice includes defense of personal injury and product liability.

 Jeanne Hamilton has joined SmithAmundsen LLC as a partner.

Nicholas C. Dugan has joined Riley Bennett & Egloff LLP as an associate.

Brandon Almas has joined Bonahoom & Bobilya LLC, a firm that resulted from the recent merger of Bobilya Law Group LLC and Bonahoom & Bonahoom LLC.

Erin M. Radefeld has joined Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP and is a member of the firm’s Litigation Practice Group.

Deborah J. Daniels, partner at Krieg DeVault LLP, has been inducted into The Indiana Academy in recognition of her achievements and contributions in the advancement of the citizens of Indiana.

Todd J. Janzen of Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP has been selected as member of the Board of Representatives for the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology.

Mary Beth Claus of Indiana University Health, Jennett Hill of Citizens Energy Group, Julianne S. Lis-Milam of Hammond Kennedy Whitney & Co. Inc., Kathy Osborn of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP. Rebecca Polak of KAR Action Services Inc.  and The Hon. Nancy H. Vaidik of the Indiana Court of Appeals were named Indiana’s 2014 Women of Influence by the Indianapolis Business Journal.

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Getting Along Is Not Wrong: Words of Wisdom for Years to Come

Civility. Courtesy. Respect. Professionalism.

These are words that should be synonymous with “Advocate,” but in a world of high stakes, strong opinions, and a general societal decline in basic manners, how can attorneys fight the good fight while living up to these ideals – especially if the other side doesn’t? We set out to find examples of lawyers who model the way while providing excellent representation.

Getting Along is Not Wrong, an initiative of the IndyBar Standing Committee on Professionalism, is the impressive collection of such positive and compelling behavior. Check out the entry below and continue checking back for future installments.

Tina L. Korty, Indiana Department of Insurance

When I was a young attorney, I was at a mediation in John Van Winkle’s office. It was one of those cases that was probably worth a certain amount but, because the people receiving the money were not the actual injured parties, we really wanted to pay less than that. There was also some concern about the precedential value of paying that much in this case. It was a struggle for both me and my client, and we shared this with John.

John simply said, “You know, it’s been my experience that when you do the right thing, things seems to work out in the end.” I don’t remember the names of the plaintiffs, the details of the case, how much the amount of money they wanted was, or anything else about that mediation, but I often remind myself of John’s simple words.

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miniBar Talk: This Week’s Top Post!

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“Red Bull Gives You Wings” – and a Headache for Red Bull

By Stephen Farris, SmithAmundsen LLC

The slogan “Red Bull gives you wings” is recognized by millions of consumers. Surely Red Bull fans don’t believe that they will literally sprout wings after drinking the energy beverage. But does the slogan falsely imply that drinking Red Bull will give consumers a physical lift or boost?

The plaintiffs in a proposed class action lawsuit thought so, and they wanted Red Bull to pay dearly for its misleading ways. The suit claimed that Red Bull primarily depends on caffeine for its energy boosting effect, but the beverage actually contains less caffeine than a cup of Starbucks coffee or other similarly caffeinated drinks. Plaintiffs said Red Bull’s advertised superior energy-boosting effects misled them to pay more for Red Bull than for a lower-priced Starbucks caffeine fix.

We’ll never know how high plaintiff’s class action suit would have flown because Red Bull has settled the lawsuit for more than $13 million and is changing its marketing claims. Consumers disappointed in their lack of wings can receive a check for $10, or more Red Bull in the form of a voucher for $15 worth of Red Bull products. Advertisers wishing to avoid Red Bull’s fate are wise to avoid not only literally false claims, but also misleading statements. Check out this article for more about the issue.

This post was written by Stephen Farris, SmithAmundsen LLC. If you would like to submit content or write an article for the Intellectual Property Section page, please email Mary Kay Price at mprice@indybar.org.

To subscribe to more Intellectual Property Section news like the article above, click here to update your news subscriptions. Your news subscriptions appear in your bi-weekly E-Bulletin and on your personalized IndyBar homepage.

Keep an eye out for our newest e-newsletter for members, Bar Talk, featuring the top IndyBar posts each month!

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Getting Along is Not Wrong: Protect Your Reputation

Civility. Courtesy. Respect. Professionalism.

These are words that should be synonymous with “Advocate,” but in a world of high stakes, strong opinions, and a general societal decline in basic manners, how can attorneys fight the good fight while living up to these ideals – especially if the other side doesn’t? We set out to find examples of lawyers who model the way while providing excellent representation.

Getting Along is Not Wrong, an initiative of the IndyBar Standing Committee on Professionalism, is the impressive collection of such positive and compelling behavior. Check out the entry below and continue checking back for future installments.

Susanne A. Heckler, U.S. District Court for Southern District of Indiana –

As a law student, my legal writing professor instilled an important lesson to me: protect your reputation. As she explained, there are so many aspects of being an attorney that you cannot control—for instance, your clients, your witnesses, and the outcome of a case— however, your reputation as an attorney is within your control. Acting with integrity, being professional to opposing counsel and maintaining composure during contentious proceedings will not only protect you from ridicule or reprimand, but you will also earn the respect of your colleagues and local judges. She would encourage us to consider how certain actions would affect our reputation down the road. Now whenever I send an email, draft a court document or interact with counsel, I think to myself, how does my conduct affect my reputation? It certainly makes me think twice about my conduct and I hope I am a better attorney because of it.

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Section & Division Committee Call-Outs: Step Up for Success in 2015!

Set yourself up for success in 2015 by stepping up to lead on an IndyBar section or division committee today! There are currently openings on three section/division committees with even more to come. As a committee member, you’ll have the opportunity to impact the group’s educational programming and community service initiatives for 2015 while working with other driven, passionate and like-minded individuals in your field.

You must be an IndyBar member and member of the respective section or division to be considered for any of the available positions. You can become a member or update your section/division memberships here.

See below for the current committee openings and keep checking back for more!

Commercial & Bankruptcy Law Section

  • One position available: Executive Committee Social Chair
  • Responsibilities: Plan and organize activities of the Section, including CLE events and the Annual Holiday Party; Attend committee meetings approximately every 90 days
  • To apply: Contact Chris Walsh at cwalsh@indybar.org by Friday, November 14
  • More information can be found here.

 

Litigation Section

  • Positions available: Executive Committee members
  • Responsibilities: Attend monthly meetings (over lunch on the second Tuesday) to plan and execute the section’s various programs and initiatives, including educational, social and philanthropic efforts
  • To apply: Contact Chris Walsh at cwalsh@indybar.org by noon on Tuesday, November 11
  • More information can be found here.

 

Young Lawyers Division

  • Positions available: Executive Committee members and sub-committee members
  • Responsibilities: Executive Committee meets monthly; Sub-committees work to plan and execute social events, education programming and community service initiatives
  • To apply: Submit a brief, one-page Statement of Interest to Tabitha Rhoda at trhoda@indybar.org by 11 a.m. on Monday, November 10
  • More information can be found here.

 

Make a resolution to get in the game in 2015 and take the first step by applying for section leadership today!

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