New Court Rule 39.18 effective next year
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The effective date for new Court Rule 39.18, Requirement for Death or Disability Plan for Attorneys in Solo Practice, is now Jan. 1, 2017. New ICR 39.18, adopted on Nov. 20, requires all solo practitioners in Iowa to have a succession plan in the event of death or disability in place by the effective date.


The new Court Rule 39.18 applies to: 

  • An attorney practicing alone
  • An attorney practicing only with other attorneys who do not own equity in the practice
  • An attorney practicing in an association of sole practitioners
  • Any other structure in which no other attorney owns equity in the practice

Two new resources are in development for those ISBA members directly affected by the rule as well as those being asked to serve as a designated attorney or alternate. Sample documents that can be used to comply with the new ICR 39.18 are to be released to ISBA members in early February. They will be distributed in an editable Word format. The sample documents are being developed through a joint project between the Iowa Academy of Trust and Estate Counsel and the ISBA.


In addition, the ISBA is also developing webinars to assist bar association members who will be impacted by this new rule and will announce them later this year.


To read new ICR 39.18, click here. To see the Jan. 15, order amending the effective date for new ICR 39.18 to Jan. 1, 2017, click here.