Today at the State Bar of Michigan
View Online
Follow Us on Facebook
Follow Us on LinkedIn
Follow the SBM Blog
February 2019

Changes Coming to NEXT Conference/Annual Meeting
Some important changes to the SBM NEXT Conference/Annual Meeting will occur this year. Since the adoption of the State Bar’s Strategic Plan in 2017, the Board of Commissioners has been engaged in a systematic, data-driven examination of the functions of the bar based on the priorities in the new plan. After several months of analysis and discussion, the Board has determined that the NEXT Conference/Annual Meeting should be redesigned to better allocate State Bar resources.

The Board has voted to reduce the NEXT Conference/Annual Meeting to its core elements, as framed in the Supreme Court Rules Concerning the State Bar of Michigan. These elements include the swearing in of new officers, the inaugural meetings of the Representative Assembly and Board of Commissioners, and the presentation of the State Bar’s annual awards. Beginning this year, the annual meeting events will no longer include the Solo & Small Firm Institute, the vendor hall, receptions, or section annual meetings. We are consolidating some scheduled end-of-bar-year networking events and moving others to different dates. An update will be provided in the next SBM Today.

2019 SBM Election Information
Are you interested in serving in a leadership role at the State Bar of Michigan or Judicial Tenure Commission? If so, check the March 2019 edition of the Michigan Bar Journal for the official State Bar Election Notice for the 2019 elections.

These elections will be held in June 2019:

  • A statewide election for a non-judicial member of the Judicial Tenure Commission
  • Elections for members of the Representative Assembly in 39 judicial circuits
  • Elections for members of the Board of Commissioners in five commissioner districts
  • Elections for members of the Young Lawyers Section Executive Council in three districts

If you're interested in running, submit a nominating petition no earlier than April 1, 2019, nor later than April 30, 2019.

Electronic ballots will be distributed no later than June 1, 2019, and members without an email address on file will receive a ballot in the mail. Ballots must be received postmarked or completed online no later than June 15, 2019.

Representative Assembly Accepting Nominations for Annual Awards
Nominations are being accepted for two Representative Assembly awards. The Michael Franck Award is given annually to an attorney who has made an outstanding contribution to the improvement of the legal profession. The Unsung Hero Award is presented to a lawyer who has exhibited the highest standards of practice and commitment for the benefit of others.

Nominees for both awards must be SBM members in good standing and their contributions may have been made either during the past year or through cumulative effort or service. Materials submitted should include complete details about the nominee's accomplishments. The Assembly's Nominating and Awards Committee will review the applications and make awards recommendations to the Representative Assembly. The Representative Assembly, chaired by Richard L. Cunningham, is the final policy-making body of the State Bar.

The nomination deadline is Saturday, March 2, 2019. Apply online. For more information about the Representative Assembly Awards, contact Carrie Sharlow at or (517) 346-6317.

On Balance Podcast: Michigan’s Rule Changes for Limited Scope Representation
On Balance Podcast from the State Bar of MichiganThe latest episode of the State Bar of Michigan’s On Balance podcast features Judge Michelle Rick and attorney Kim Jones, who discuss the problems faced by people with unmet civil legal needs due to an inability to secure legal representation. Guest host Darin Day talks with them about rule changes for limited scope representation in Michigan that aim to decrease the justice gap. They describe the new rules and provide examples of how Michigan attorneys can provide these types of limited legal services to clients. They also encourage lawyers to check out the Limited Scope Tool Kit.

On Balance, on the Legal Talk Network, delivers useful and entertaining ideas on managing life as a lawyer. To subscribe to On Balance in iTunes, follow two easy steps: 1. Using your mobile device, click on this link, or enter this link in your browser: 2. Click the purple "Subscribe" button that shows up right under the name of the podcast. To access On Balance in Google Play, follow these three steps: 1. Using your mobile device, click this link, or enter this link in your browser: 2. Click the subscribe button (located just beneath the On Balance logo). 3. Click the subscribe button that appears in the pop-up.

Member Benefits & Discounts

ABA Book Discounts

Shop. Save. Earn.
SBM members can now save 15% on ABA books. The discount applies to all regularly priced book purchases at the ABA web store. Simply use the special discount code MICHBAR at checkout. To start saving 15 percent on your ABA book purchases visit Shop ABA or call (800) 285-2221 and use the special discount code MICHBAR.

Earn More Clients in 2019
Download a free ebook, How to Grow Your Practice with Ruby Receptionists, and learn how Ruby’s team of live, virtual receptionists can make 2019 a landmark year in your practice. You’ll discover how a virtual receptionist can increase your revenue, how to streamline your day with a team of receptionists, and what’s included in Ruby’s service. As a member of the State Bar of Michigan, you save 6% on Ruby’s monthly plans. For more information call Ruby.

Free e-Publications
The State Bar offers five electronic publications delivered to your email inbox at no cost.

e-Journal provides daily summaries of opinions released from the Michigan Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Subscribe

NewsLinks provides a daily summary of law-related news articles, editorials, and columns carried in major local, state, and national media. Subscribe

Receive Practice Management updates sent directly to your inbox with tips and tools from the Practice Management Resource Center. Subscribe

Public Policy Update is a weekly journal highlighting public policy issues of interest to the profession. Subscribe

February Bar Journal—Alternative Dispute Resolution
Read the February Bar Journal
Digital Version
(ideal for tablets, smartphones, and e-readers)

Online Version (PDFs)

Make the Most of Your Membership