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    August 5, 2015   
Past Issues   

Supreme Court seeks nominations for four advisory committees

The Iowa Supreme Court invited ISBA President Bruce Walker to provide nominations for four advisory committees with anticipated vacancies this fall. ISBA members are encouraged to submit their names for recommendation by the ISBA no later than Monday, Aug. 10.

The advisory committees with expected vacancies are:

· Committee on Probate Procedures and Forms

· Committee on Rules of Civil Procedure

· Committee on Rules of Criminal Procedure

· Committee on Rules of Juvenile Procedure

Advisory committees meet on an as-needed basis when the court assigns proposals. Counsel to the Chief Justice, Molly Kottmeyer, welcomes questions from those who may be interested in serving on any of the committees. She can be reached at

To be considered for ISBA nomination, email, with the subject, "Supreme Court Committee Nomination.” In the email, include the nominated name, contact information (phone and email), location, considered advisory committee and a brief paragraph outlining why the individual should be nominated. Ensure nominations are sent to the ISBA no later than close-of-business Aug. 10. Walker will make his nominations to the court after considering all nomination requests. The Iowa Supreme Court will make the final selection of committee appointments.

ISBA offers free Residential Settlement Practices on-demand CLE

Thanks to the generous support of Iowa Title Guaranty, the ISBA is able to offer its newest on-demand CLE, Residential Settlement Practices, free of charge. This CLE, featuring Tim Gartin, a partner at Hastings, Gartin & Boettger, L.L.P, in Ames, Iowa, covers the significant changes to the closing process of secondary market residential loans that came into effect Aug. 1.

The 60-minute video was recorded during Gartin’s presentation at the 2015 ISBA Annual Meeting in June. In it, Gartin, who previously served two terms as chair of the ISBA Real Estate & Title Law Section, covers the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s new disclosures and loan closing procedures with the CFPB disclosures. He also provides recommendations for those advising buyers and sellers.

This on-demand video has been approved for one hour of state CLE. To access the free video, visit the on-demand CLE section of the ISBA online store, or click here. If you have questions for Gartin, please email them to

Supreme Court seeks comment on the adoption of the UBE, effective Feb. 2016

Chief Justice Mark Cady has signed an order adopting the Uniform Bar Examination as the examination for admission to the Iowa bar beginning in February 2016. The court requests public comment on proposed amendments to chapter 31 of the Iowa Court Rules incorporating the UBE into Iowa's bar admissions process. The deadline for submitting comments is no later than Sept. 4.

Last year, the court directed the Iowa Board of Law Examiners to study the UBE and provide a recommendation regarding possible adoption of the UBE and suggest potential improvements to the bar admission system in Iowa. To review the Board’s report, click here.

Those interested in providing public comments or learning more can view the order here or visit the Iowa Judicial Branch website, navigating to "About the Courts,” then clicking on "Supreme Court.” From the left navigation, click "Orders.” Public comments may be emailed to or mailed to the clerk of the Supreme Court. Those providing comments should review the order for formatting specifications.


ISBA Leaders, delegates attend 2015 ABA Annual Meeting

The 2015 American Bar Association Annual Meeting was Aug. 1 - 4. It began with ABA President William C. Hubbard presiding and closed Aug. 4 with new ABA President Paulette Brown becoming the first woman of color to serve as president of the organization. ISBA ABA Delegates Alan Olson and David L. Brown carried the Iowa state flag into the Chicago Hyatt Ballroom Aug. 1 along with other state delegates at the beginning of the General Assembly.

The National Council of Women’s Bar Associations, an affiliate of the ABA with a vote in the ABA House of Delegates, presented the Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys and the Polk County Women Attorneys with the NCWBA Public Service Award for the Visiting Mom’s Project July 31 in Chicago during the 2015 Women’s Bar Leadership Summit, held concurrently with the ABA’s annual meeting. To read more about the project, click here.

Highlights included the General Assembly Invocation delivered by Reverend Dr. Norvel Goff, Sr., Presiding Elder of the Emanuel A.M.E. Church of Charleston, South Carolina, presentation of the ABA Medal of Honor to Roberta Cooper Ramo and the keynote address delivered by U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch. During her acceptance speech, Ramo recounted the day that she met Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King sitting at a kitchen table in a South Side Chicago apartment with wall-to-wall attendees.

The meeting included a CLE Showcase that featured "The Ethical Implications of Bias and Discrimination in the Legal Profession and the Justice System,” "Mass Incarceration: A Nation Behind Bars,” and "50 Years: Voting Rights in America.” To view Ramo’s acceptance speech and Lynch’s keynote, click here. To read more about the keynote address, click here. To view Brown’s speech to the 2015 ABA House of Delegates outlining the goals for her presidency, click here.

Magistrate Judge Vacancy - United States District Court for the Northern District of Iowa

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Iowa is accepting applications for a full time Magistrate Judge in Sioux City, Iowa. The current magistrate judge has been nominated by President Barack Obama to replace the Honorable Mark W. Bennett, who took senior status in June 2015.

The duties of the position are demanding and wide-ranging and include but are not limited to conducting most preliminary proceedings in criminal cases, including plea hearings; trial and disposition of misdemeanor cases; conducting various pretrial matters and evidentiary proceedings on referral from district judges; and trial and disposition of civil cases upon consent of the litigants. The basic authority of a United States Magistrate Judge is specified in 28 U.S.C. § 636.

The current annual salary for this position is $185,012, and the term of office is eight years. To obtain full details on the position, visit here. Application forms may be obtained from the clerk of court and the court's website. Applications must be submitted personally or by mail to the clerk’s office by Aug. 28.

Paid internship opportunity – Iowa Utilities Board

The Iowa Utilities Board is accepting applications for a part-time, paid intern in Des Moines, Iowa. The intern will assist the Office of the General Counsel in providing advice and counsel to a three-member utilities board and the board’s staff. The duties of the position include assisting with the review of legal and factual issues in board dockets and preparation of legal memoranda.

The hourly rate of pay for the internship is between $13.78 and $20.07 per hour. To obtain full details on the position, click here. For application instructions, visit the Iowa Department of Administrative Services – Human Resources Enterprise (DAS-HRE) and search for job code "90638 Law Clerk.” The deadline for applications is no later than Aug. 28.


In Other News ...

Davenport native named chief of staff to Iowa Governor Terry Branstad
A Davenport native has been promoted to the Chief of Staff to Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds. Michael Bousselot, who served as the governor’s office legal counsel, will be taking over for Chief of Staff Matt Hinch. Hinch is leaving to pursue an opportunity in the private sector, said a statement from the governor’s office.
WQAD Channel 8, Quad Cities

Using Windows 10 for work - unmodified - is probably an ethical violation
Even though the new, free upgrade version of Windows fixes a lot of the mistake that was Windows 8, Microsoft has crafted Windows 10 from the ground up with the ability to monitor and report back to it and its "trusted business partners” almost everything you do on the web or Internet–including reading and reporting the contents of your e-mail to whoever it wants to. Yes, that includes e-mail to and from your partners, and to and from your clients. As you have an ethical duty to assure client confidentiality, your act of agreeing to the Microsoft Terms of Service is effectively you agreeing to NOT keep client matters confidential, and your act of not modifying the Windows 10 settings, could be ethical violations in each and every state.
Law Office Technology Bulletin

Voting Rights Act anniversary prompts calls for action
Josie Johnson remembers what it was like when voting came with a struggle. As a young girl in Texas, Johnson helped her father gather signatures on petitions to try to abolish that state's poll tax. Not until she was in her 30s did she see such barriers struck down by the Voting Rights Act of 1965. "We finally got the legal right to cast a vote," said Johnson, who moved to Minnesota and became known as a civil rights pioneer and educator. "And I believe as a citizen casting your vote and being able to express your wishes regarding critical issues and people is what citizenship is all about. So, for me, this is a historic moment."
Minnesota Public Radio

College student renters fight unfair charges
Hundreds of college students who rent private apartments while attending Iowa’s three public universities routinely are being taken advantage of by landlords who withhold safety deposits that might be owed back to the students. It happens because the students are transient, usually moving after graduation before their lease expires; do not keep track of their expenses; and, in some instances, do not even know they are being charged fees they might not owe.
Des Moines Register

The Iowa Lawyer Weekly is an electronic newsletter published every Wednesday. Please submit comments, letters to the editor, articles, or photos, to 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.


The Iowa Supreme Court recently issued orders granting or denying applications for further review in 35 cases. Click here for a list of cases.



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