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March 2018

Apply Now for the 2018 SBM Circle of Excellence
The State Bar of Michigan invites all law firms and corporations with two or more attorneys to apply for the 2018 Pro Bono Circle of Excellence, which recognizes each firm that fully complied with the State Bar’s Voluntary Pro Bono Standard in 2017. The Circle of Excellence is published frequently in the Michigan Bar Journal, posted on the websites of the State Bar and Michigan State Bar Foundation, and distributed at the SBM NEXT Conference. Complete the Circle of Excellence application by April 13.

The Voluntary Pro Bono Standard calls for attorneys to annually take three pro bono cases, devote at least 30 hours to pro bono service, or contribute $300 to a legal aid provider organization. Firms that can afford to do so are asked to make a minimum annual financial contribution of $500 per attorney and are recognized at the “Leadership Level” of the Circle of Excellence. Individual lawyers who meet the Pro Bono Standard are celebrated locally through Access to Justice programs and the State Bar of Michigan's A Lawyer Helps program.

Michigan Department of State Implements New Appeal System
The Michigan Department of State has implemented a new electronic system for license appeal hearings and circuit court appeals handled by the Administrative Hearings Section. This system is called the Driver Appeal Integrated System (DAIS) and will allow petitioners, attorneys, prosecutors, and law enforcement officers to request electronic access to hearing requests and appeals. Specifically, attorneys representing a petitioner will be able to:

  • Submit hearing requests and required evidence electronically.
  • Receive electronic notifications with updates regarding the administrative hearing. Examples include: Notice of Administrative Hearing, Notice of Adjournment, and Notice of Withdraw.
  • Submit requests for adjournment or withdraw a request for hearing electronically.
  • Serve the Department with Circuit Court petitions electronically.
  • Request, pay for, and receive the administrative record including a transcript of the administrative hearing electronically.
  • Serve the Department with Circuit Court orders electronically.

Access to the system has been available to attorneys since March 5. To get started, create an account with your username and password through MiLogin for third-parties. If you already have a MiLogin account, you need to request access to the MDOS DAIS system. For more information, visit the Michigan Department of State website.

SBM PMRC Offers Upcoming Evernote Webinar
The State Bar of Michigan’s Practice Management Resource Center will offer an upcoming webinar, Evernote as a Law Practice Tool, that will share Evernote’s benefit to lawyers, how to use Evernote in the practice of law, essential Evernote features, and tips and tricks to get the most out of Evernote. This webinar will take place from 2:00–3:00 p.m. on April 12. To learn more about or register for the webinar, visit the SBM Practice Management Resource Center Webinars page.

To stay caught up with what the PMRC is doing, follow them on Twitter @MIStateBarPMRC.

On Balance Podcast: Check Out the Latest Episode
On Balance PodcastThe latest episode of the State Bar of Michigan’s On Balance podcast features Brian Cuban, younger brother of Dallas Mavericks owner and entrepreneur Mark Cuban, who is a Dallas-based attorney, author, and addiction recovery advocate. Hosts JoAnn Hathaway and Tish Vincent discuss with Cuban what it’s like for lawyers struggling with addiction, and how stigmas, lack of support, and the fear of consequences can make the situation seem hopeless.

On Balance, which premiered last month on 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.

Order 2018 April Alphabetical & Resource Directories Now
April Resource DirectoryLooking for a member of the State Bar of Michigan? The SBM online member directory contains the most up-to-date contact information. In addition, a portable April Resource Directory containing comprehensive court, state, and local government and lawyer association contact information is available online and will be sent to you if you have opted in to receive a print edition of the Michigan Bar Journal April issue. You can order extra copies of the resource directory for $10.

If you prefer to receive a member list in print, we offer the April Resource Directory Plus Alphabetical Member Roster, which includes all the information found in the April Resource Directory plus a complete listing of all members of the State Bar of Michigan. Place your order to purchase a printed copy of the April Resource Directory Plus Alphabetical Member Roster for $35.

Save the Date: October 1, 2018
Mark your calendars now: The new State Bar year begins October 1, 2018. At that point, you should be prepared to renew your license to continue practicing law for the 2018–2019 Bar year. In mid-September you will receive an email from the State Bar of Michigan inviting you to log into the member area and complete your annual disclosures online. You will then have the choice to pay membership dues online or mail a check to the State Bar’s lockbox.

We will also send you several reminder emails to complete the annual disclosure statement and the dues invoice well in advance of the November 30 deadline, after which a $50 late fee will be assessed. Now is the time to update your member profile with a valid email address so that you will receive all important dues notices by email.


Tips & Tools Seminar—May 1 in Lansing
The semi-annual seminar features presentations on how to maintain mutually beneficial client relationships, draft effective fee agreements, manage lawyer trust accounts, analyze ethical issues, and use innovative techniques and technology for effective law office management. The seminar presents an excellent opportunity for solo practitioners and new lawyers to obtain ethical guidance and practical information from colleagues who have effectively implemented law office management techniques and utilized economically-priced technology to improve the efficiency of their law practices. More Information

Upper Michigan Legal Institute
June 8–9, 2018 • Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island
Learn More

You won't want to miss this opportunity to get the latest developments in case law, invaluable technology, and practice management tips, all while enjoying the ambiance of the historic Grand Hotel on beautiful Mackinac Island.

Sessions this year will provide updates on criminal law, elder law, and family law, plus burning issues in marijuana law, improving productivity with Alexa and Google Assistant, technology competence, guardianships and protective orders, and legal concepts implicated in the expansion of Airbnb and the sharing economy.

NEXT Conference 2018—Save the Date
September 26–28, 2018
DeVos Place, Grand Rapids

Have fun, make connections, and recharge your law practice at the 2018 NEXT Conference, formerly known as the Annual Meeting/Solo & Small Firm Institute, which will be held September 26–28 at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids. In just a day and a half, you’ll engage with experts whose sole goal is to help you save time, save money, and increase your bottom line.

This year the popular Judicial Perspectives educational track will return, featuring Michigan Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Clement, Kent County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Yates, Ottawa County Circuit Court Judge Jon Hulsing, Muskegon County Circuit Court Judge Timothy Hicks, Genesee County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Farah, and Kalamazoo County Circuit Judge Pamela Lightvoet.

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 Online

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

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

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

March Bar Journal—General
March Bar JournalDigital Version (ideal for tablets, smartphones, and e-readers)

Online Version (PDFs)