May 9, 2018  Past Issues

2018 legislative session comes to a close after “successful year” for ISBA priorities

The 2018 Iowa Legislative Session ended late Saturday afternoon, May 5. Several Iowa State Bar Association priorities were among the last bills to be considered by the legislature. The ISBA legislative team summarizes the action taken this session in this video update.

You can view the most updated version of the ISBA affirmative agenda chart here, which reflects action taken on all ISBA-submitted bills in 2018, as well as read this longer summary of all action taken or avoided that would have impacted Iowa’s attorneys.

Additionally, for an explanation of the tax reform bill that passed this session, click here.

Important dues renewal info for members

Beginning next week, ISBA members should begin receiving renewal forms in the mail for next year's dues. Because of the time needed to print and process dues invoices, some members who have already paid dues online may still receive a paper copy of the first mailing.

Any member who has already renewed is asked to disregard the notice, For those still interested in renewing their memberships online, simply log into your profile on the ISBA website and click the renew button.

Justice Zager to retire this fall

Iowa Supreme Court Justice Bruce Zager has announced his retirement effective Sept. 3. The Waterloo native, who joined the state’s highest court in March 2011, will have completed 19 years as a judicial officer when he retires, 12 of those years on the district court bench. Prior to his appointment to the bench in 1999, he was in private practice in Waterloo for 18 years.

"It has been my distinct honor and privilege to serve as the 110th justice in the 180-year history of the Iowa Supreme Court," Justice Zager said. Chief Justice Mark Cady added that “Justice Zager has been a very important part of the supreme court and he will be missed both as a clear-thinking, deliberative judge and as a good friend.”

Under Iowa law, the vacancy that will occur upon Justice Zager’s retirement will be filled by Governor Kim Reynolds from a list of three nominees submitted by the State Judicial Nominating Commission. More information about the nominating commission, including a list of the commission members, can be found here.

A brief biography of Justice Zager and his comments about his career on the state’s top bench can be found at this link.


Filing deadline is May 15 for tax-exempt organizations

If you have tax-exempt organizations as clients, remind them to file their IRS Form 990-series information returns by next Tuesday, May 15. By law, organizations that fail to file annual reports for three consecutive years will see their federal tax exemptions automatically revoked as of the due date of the third year for which they are required to file an annual report.

The Pension Protection Act of 2006 mandates that most tax-exempt organizations file annual Form 990-series information returns or notices with the IRS. The law, which went into effect at the beginning of 2007, also imposed a new annual filing requirement for small organizations. Churches and church-related organizations are not required to file annual reports.

Organizations that have had their exemptions automatically revoked can apply for reinstatement of their tax-exempt status and pay the appropriate user fee.

Job opportunities available for Northern District U.S. Attorney’s Office

The U.S. Attorney’s offices for the Northern District of Iowa in Cedar Rapids and Sioux City are looking for two assistant attorneys and two special assistant attorneys for each location. The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. CDT on Monday, May 21.

A description of each position and how and where to apply can be found by clicking on the links below:

Cedar Rapids
Assistant U.S. Attorney
Special Assistant U.S. Attorney

Sioux City
Assistant U.S. Attorney
Special Assistant U.S. Attorney

Applications being accepted for District 5C magistrate

A magistrate position in District 5C is now open for applications after the appointment of Becky Goettsch as a district associate judge.

To be eligible, an applicant must be a resident of Election District 5C, admitted to the practice of law in the state of Iowa, and be under the age of 72 at the time of appointment. The term of office is four years.

Application forms are due by May 21 and must be obtained from Jennifer Webster, Office of the District Court Administrator, Room 408, Polk County Courthouse, Des Moines, IA, 50309, in person or by email. A copy of the application must be emailed to each commission member.

Further details can be found in the Notice of Vacancy.


May 4

No. 16-0134
State of Iowa v. Michael Cory Kelso-Christy
Defendant seeks further review of his conviction for burglary in the second degree, contending he did not enter the premises with the specific intent to commit sexual abuse.

No. 16-2152
In the Interest of Q.G. and W.G., Minor Children
Father requests further review of district court order terminating his parental rights in two minor children.

No. 16-2178
State of Iowa v. Brett Calvin Hensley
The defendant seeks further review of a court of appeals decision that affirmed the district court denial of his motion to obtain jail credit for the time he spent in the Bridges of Iowa program.

Legal Ed Section announces council slate, and it includes 1 young lawyer
In January, Law School Transparency, a group that focuses on law school reform, and the Young Lawyers Division of the Iowa State Bar Association issued a report about improving legal education, with its recommendations including the addition of two young lawyers to the council.

Lawmakers react to key bills after completing legislative session
Lawmakers are back home after finishing an extended legislative session. They worked overtime to pass major legislation that will make up the state’s roughly 7.4 billion dollar budget, which begins in July.

Do legal tech companies lack coherent market strategies?
The takeaway from a new survey of legal technology companies’ sales and marketing can be summed up in one statement: Legal tech companies are confused — confused about what they should sell, how they should sell it, and to whom.
Above the Law

Why we must stop relying on student evaluations of law school teaching
Few academics will be surprised to hear that more evidence has come out showing that student evaluations of teaching are often biased.
TaxProf Blog



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Business and Estate Planning Attorney - Crary Huff Law Firm, Sioux City, IA

Litigation Attorney - Crary Huff Law Firm, Sioux City, IA

Director of Policy and Legal Services - Iowa Association of School Boards, Des Moines, IA

Counsel-Agri/Farm Insurance - Nationwide Insurance, Des Moines, IA

Attorney - Hopkins & Huebner P.C., Adel, IA

Family Law Associate Attorney - Arenson Law Group, PC, Cedar Rapids, IA

Shareholder/Attorney - Confidential employer, West Des Moines, IA

Appellate Counsel 1 - Iowa Judicial Branch, Des Moines, IA

Paralegal - Carmoney Law Firm, PLLC, Des Moines, IA

Staff Attorney I - Iowa Judicial Branch, Des Moines, IA

Assistant General Counsel - Wells Enterprises, Inc., Le Mars, IA

Public Finance Attorney - Dorsey & Whitney LLP, Des Moines, IA

Appellate Paralegal - Iowa Judicial Branch, Des Moines, IA


The following individuals applied for admission on motion to the Iowa Bar:

Charles E. Nelson, Ballard Spahr LLP, Minneapolis, MN

Travis Benson, Thompson Law, P.C., Sioux Falls, SD

Douglas Thesenvitz, Thompson Law, P.C., Sioux Falls, SD

Timothy D. Crawford, Sammons Financial Group, West Des Moines, IA

Anyone with questions or comments on the above applicants should contact: Tre Critelli at the Office of Professional Regulation, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50319; Phone: 515-725-8029.


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