provides update on ISBA legislative efforts
Legislative Counsel Jim Carney highlights several of the association’s key
legislative initiatives and provides an overview of the 2015 legislative
session in a video recorded Monday, Feb. 2.
In the 10-minute video,
Carney discusses at length the bar’s efforts to increase the hourly rate
attorneys receive for representing indigent defendants, higher caps on expert
witness fees and the bar’s position on a proposal, House Study Bill 43, which
will allow residents from anywhere in the state to apply for open judgeship
positions. Presently, applicants for open judgeships must reside in the
judicial district or sub-district where the opening exists.
· The overall state
budget, which he says will be tight for the upcoming fiscal year.
· Making probate costs
uniform across the state and standardizing the assets that are included in
calculating those costs.
· Tort immunity, which
the association has historically opposed, on such activities as sledding
accidents and school incidents.
complete update video here.
opinions now available, webinars to follow
opinions were recently published by the ISBA’s Committee on Ethics and Practice
Guidelines. The opinions cover aspects of client email communications. Webinars
on the opinions will be scheduled in the next few weeks and are free for ISBA
regarding the webinars are still being worked out. Next week’s Iowa Lawyer
Weekly e-newsletter will include registration information for the events
tentatively scheduled for Feb. 18 and another in March, date to be
determined. Attendance of the webinars will be worth one hour of ethics
CLE credit each.
ethics opinions can be found below:
Opinion 15-01: A lawyer sending or receiving substantive communications
with a client via e-mail or other electronic means ordinarily must warn the client
about the risk of interception including the use of a computer or other device,
or e-mail account, to which a third party may gain access.
Opinion 15-02: Interception of confidential or attorney-client
communication: the duty to stop, notify, return and, in the case of wrongful
interception, to withdraw representation.
interested in reviewing all ethics opinions can click here
to visit the Ethics and Practice Guidelines page or by going to www.iowabar.org, navigating to "Practice
Tools” on the top navigation, then "Ethics Advice/Opinions."
Court: Access to Justice issues require further study
Supreme Court published an order Tuesday, Feb. 3, electing not to adopt a
mandatory or optional fee on all Iowa-licensed attorneys for support of civil
legal services for low-income Iowans, and electing to further study the issue.
To view the
here or visit www.iowacourts.gov,
click "About the Courts,” "Supreme Court,” then "Orders.”
Public Defenders Office issues new requirements for contracting attorneys
contract with the State Public Defenders Office must meet new requirements to
qualify for work from the SPD office. The new requirements, which went into
effect Jan. 1, are based on the class of criminal case involved. They include:
· Class A and B
– four years of practice experience and five hours of CLE in criminal law;
completion of five jury trials; and references from three judges.
· Class C and D
felonies – two years of practice experience and five hours of CLE in criminal
law; completion of one jury trial.
· Misdemeanors – three hours of CLE
in criminal law annually.
· Juvenile – three hours of CLE
in juvenile law annually.
point, civil jury trials cannot be counted toward the jury trial requirement.
However, the state public defender has the discretion to waive some of the
requirements in cases of need.
leadership meets with Iowa lawyer-legislators
State Bar Association leadership met with Iowa’s lawyer-legislators during the
40th Annual Lawyer-Legislator Dinner at the Des Moines Embassy Club
Jan. 28. Each year, ISBA Legislative Counsel Jim Carney and his team host the
current lawyer-legislators and The ISBA leadership to provide an open
environment for them to mingle and discuss ISBA legislative priorities.
dinner, Carney and ISBA President Joe Feller discussed a number of legislative
priorities included in this year’s Affirmative Legislative Program. Along with
discussions of legislation, the invitees had a chance to introduce themselves
to the group to help everyone get to know each other and to build
available for students hired as summer clerks in rural practices
grant from the Iowa State Bar Foundation makes it possible for students who
work as clerks in rural practices during the summer of 2015 to receive
stipends. The grant money will be given to Iowa Legal Aid for distribution to
students in the Rural Practice Committee’s summer clerkship program who spend
at least 50 hours on Iowa Legal Aid Volunteer Lawyers Project activities that
assist indigent Iowans.
are not considered wages. However, they may benefit rural attorneys who would
like to hire a summer clerk, but are concerned they don’t have enough work to
keep a student busy for the recommended 40 hours a week for 10 weeks, and can’t
afford to pay a student for that amount of time. By allowing the student, under
the supervision of the attorney, to work on Iowa Legal Aid projects, the
obligation for keeping the clerk busy is reduced while at the same time
allowing Iowa Legal Aid to serve more indigent Iowans.
the agreement between Iowa Legal Aid and the ISBA Rural Practice Committee on
the stipend program can be seen here. Contact information for Iowa Legal
Aid representatives is at the bottom of the agreement. Attorneys interested in
the stipend program can also contact Phil Garland or Amy Skogerson, co-chairs
of the Rural Practice Committee. Garland’s contact information is: firstname.lastname@example.org or
641-923-3792. Skogerson’s contact information is: email@example.com or
appoints Workers’ Compensation Commissioner
Branstad appointed Joe Cortese as Iowa’s Workers’ Compensation Commissioner
Tuesday, Feb. 3. Cortese will replace Michelle "Miki” McGovern, who had been serving
as the acting commissioner since September 2014.
thirty years of experience in workers’ compensation, I’m confident Joe Cortese
will serve as an independent and fair commissioner,” said Branstad. "I
appreciate Miki’s service to the department and the state in the interim.”
assume the role of commissioner effective Feb. 16. His appointment is subject
to Iowa Senate confirmation.
practices workers’ compensation law at Huber, Book, Cortese & Lanz, in West
Des Moines, Iowa, where he is a partner. He has been with the firm, formerly
Jones, Hoffmann & Huber, since 1981. He has been a partner since 1985. He
received his Bachelor’s degree from Indiana University and earned his J.D. with
honors from Drake University Law School. He is a member of The Iowa State Bar Association,
Polk County Bar Association, Iowa Association of Workers’ Compensation
Attorneys, Iowa Defense Counsel Association, Defense Research Institute and a
founding member of the American Academy of ADR Attorneys.
and the Law: Health Care Power of Attorney video available to public
Podcast Subcommittee of the Public Relations Committee recently released its
newest "You and the Law” video regarding health
care power of attorney. The video is a helpful guide for the public and for
attorneys to share with clients who may be considering their options when
facing difficult medical conditions.
the Law” videos are located under the "Public Resources” drop-down menu on
the top navigation bar of the ISBA website (www.iowabar.org).
The page also contains a number of brochures and podcasts on various topics.
informational multimedia products produced by ISBA sections and committees
are meant to be used by the public and attorneys who want to offer basic
information to clients on various issues. They are not an attempt to provide
legal advice. The ISBA encourages viewers to consult with an attorney regarding
legal matters to ensure their rights and interests are protected.
comments regarding the "You and the Law” series can be directed to Chris
Fritz at 515-697-7873 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
|In Other News...|
way to start a court’s history: ‘Iowa Supreme Court’s first case freed a slave’
a nice story in the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier by Dennis Magee, titled "Iowa
Supreme Court’s first case freed a slave,” about In the Matter of Ralph, (a
colored man), on habeas corpus (Iowa Terr. 1839), apparently handed down July
4, 1839. Here’s an excerpt from the case, in which a master let his slave go to
the Iowa Territory, on condition that he would pay $500 (plus interest) for his
court officials, sheriffs warn residents of jury scam
officials and the Linn County Sheriff’s office are warning area residents of a
recent scam where a person claiming to be a "lieutenant” is attempting to
collect money from individuals by telling they must pay a fine for missing jury
duty. Carroll Edmondson, 6th Judicial District court administrator, said he had
a report of the jury scam last week from Polk County court officials and then
Johnson County clerks said three people had reported the same thing Monday.
finds court fees also punish the families of those who owe
A new report on the growth of court fines and
fees that are charged to often-impoverished offenders is focusing on another
group that pays: their families. Titled "When All Else Fails, Fining the
Family," the study finds that impoverished people who go through the
criminal justice system almost always get cash from family and friends to help
pay their court-ordered fines, even though those family and friends are often
poor, too. The report was published by the Center For Community Alternatives, a
New York-based advocacy group that promotes alternatives to incarceration.
Woodbury County Sheriff pitches plan to take over
guards working at the Woodbury County Courthouse could be reapplying for their
jobs less than a year after they started. A change in who provides courthouse
security is almost certain to occur in coming months, but the Woodbury County
Board on Tuesday decided to wait while a legal challenge plays out. Seven
guards hired to fill three positions started work at the end of August, after a
long, contentious debate last year over who should oversee the building's
first-ever security plan. The courthouse, at 620 Douglas St., was built in
|The Iowa Lawyer Weekly is an electronic newsletter published every Wednesday. Please submit comments, letters to the editor, articles, or photos, to email@example.com. Contact information should be included with submissions. The ISBA reserves the right to refuse any submission, but will take all submissions into consideration for future publication.|
SUPREME COURT OPINIONS
January 30, 2015
SIOUX PHARM, INC. and SIOUX BIOCHEMICAL, INC. vs. SUMMIT NUTRITIONALS INTERNATIONAL, INC
Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Sioux County, Duane E. Hoffmeyer, Judge.
Defendant appeals order denying motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction. AFFIRMED.
IOWA SUPREME COURT ATTORNEY DISCIPLINARY BOARD vs. CAMI N. ESLICK
On review of the report of the Grievance Commission of the Supreme Court of Iowa.
The grievance commission reports an attorney violated several court rules and rules of professional conduct and recommends suspension. LICENSE SUSPENDED.
TIPS & TRICKS
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