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MBA News

MBA launches online drug lab crisis resource center

The Massachusetts Bar Association has been actively working and meeting with state officials from the Gov. Deval L. Patrick Administration, Attorney General's Office, courts and the Committee for Public Counsel Services to address the ongoing issues surrounding the Department of Public Health Drug Lab Scandal.

Providing access for defense counsel, who are representing clients in thousands of cases affected, has been the main priority of the MBA.

Click here for the MBA's Drug Lab Crisis Resource Center.


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Chief Justice Ireland speaks at the 2011 MBA Bench-Bar Symposium.


R.S.V.P. for the Oct. 17 MBA Bench-Bar Symposium

Event to feature Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland's Annual Address to the Legal Community

The Massachusetts Bar Association's Annual Bench-Bar Symposium will feature Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland's Annual Address to the Legal Community. The event will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 17, beginning at 4 p.m. at the John Adams Courthouse.

"We are delighted to once again provide the stage for Chief Justice Ireland's much anticipated annual remarks," said MBA President Robert L. Holloway Jr., who will provide welcome remarks and introduce Ireland at the annual event.

Trial Court Administrator Lewis H. "Harry" Spence will serve as another featured speaker at the Oct. 17 event. This will be Spence's first public address since historic court reform led to his hiring in April 2012 as the first non-judicial professional to the Trial Court Department's business operations. Spence's most immediate focus has been on a comprehensive strategic planning process for the Trial Court launched earlier this year, work toward updating the Trial Court's personnel policies and practices and the development of a new capital plan for court buildings, in coordination with the state's Division of Capital Asset Management.

The 2011 court reform legislation split the management of the Trial Courts between judicial and business operations, "a move that had been championed by the Massachusetts Bar Association for decades," said Holloway. He explained that MBA Past President and former member of the Court Management Advisory Board Leo V. Boyle will also provide remarks at the Oct. 17 symposium. Boyle was instrumental in launching MBA's advocacy on court reform when he served as president in 1990-91.

The event is FREE to attend for members of the Massachusetts judiciary and bar; however, those interested in attending should register as space is limited.

Click here to R.S.V.P.

The speaking program will be followed by a networking reception to begin at 4:45 p.m.

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New issue of Lawyers Journal available

The October issue of Lawyers Journal has been mailed and is available online.

It features information on the Oct. 17 MBA Bench-Bar Symposium, which will include Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland's Annual Address to the legal community.

Additional highlights include:

  • Coverage of the first 2012-13 MBA House of Delegates meeting;
  • A practice alert for criminal justice practitioners in the wake of wrongdoing at DPH Drug Lab; and
  • An overview of what to expect at the Oct. 26-27 Annual Family Law Conference, which will be held in Lenox.

Click here to read the October issue.


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News from the courts

Trial Court designates judges to manage drug lab cases; MBA leader to help lead search for probation commissioner


Trial Court designates judges to manage drug lab cases

The trial court has established designated sessions for the purpose of assigning counsel and addressing the immediate liberty interests of the incarcerated defendants serving time in connection with a drug conviction stemming from a questionable drug analysis at the Hinton State Lab.

In each county the departmental chief justices have designated the these judges to oversee that department's cases and ensure expeditious processing. Approximately three-quarters of these initial cases are in the superior court and the remaining cases are split between the Boston Municipal Court and the district court.  The information available indicates that there are no juveniles presently committed to DYS on a drug offense.

Meetings continue with the district attorneys and defense bar in each county to establish court dates for these cases in the next several weeks. The dates will vary county to county. The trial court is ready and available to handle cases immediately. Suffolk Superior Court has scheduled cases for the weeks of Oct. 15 and Oct. 22. Court locations have been determined based on proximity to their county House of Correction to facilitate processing. Videoconferencing will be used wherever possible.


MBA leader to help lead search for probation commissioner

GartenbergMassachusetts Bar Association Executive Management Board member Lee Gartenberg will sit on a recently formed committee to assist the trial court with the selection of a new Commissioner of Probation for Massachusetts. The committee was convened by Chief Justice for Administration and Management Robert A. Mulligan and Court Administrator Lewis H. "Harry" Spence. Acting commissioner Ronald P. Corbett Jr. will retire in January 2013.

Committee members include officials from within and external to the court system who are familiar with the role and services provided by probation, as a critical component of the criminal justice system. The committee will work with executive search firm Isaacson Miller, which was selected through an RFP process to assist with recruiting and screening candidates. The committee will conduct interviews and recommend finalists for consideration. The trial court's human resources staff will support the committee during the process.

Isaacson Miller has initiated a data collection process to enable preparation of a challenge document for dissemination to criminal justice professionals across the country. Those with information on potential candidates or sources for potential candidates are encouraged to forward recommendations to the Isaacson Miller search team at [e-mail 4661].

Committee members include:

  • Chief Justice for Administration and Management Robert A. Mulligan;
  • Court Administrator Lewis H. "Harry" Spence;
  • Mass. Sentencing Commission Executive Director Francis J. Carney, Ph.D.;
  • Acting Commissioner of Probation Ronald Corbett, Ed. D.;
  • Chief Probation Officer Sophia O'Brien (ret.);
  • Hon. Stacey Fortes-White, district court;
  • Hon. John Lu, superior court probation committee chair;
  • Hon. Edward Redd, Boston Municipal Court (ret.);
  • Secretary Mary E. Heffernan, Executive Office of Public Safety and Security;
  • Parole Board Chair Josh Wall;
  • Executive Director Christine Cole, Harvard JFK School Program in Criminal Justice; chair, Advisory Committee on Probation; and
  • Attorney Lee Gartenberg, director of Inmate Legal Services, Middlesex Sheriff's Office; Executive Management Board, Massachusetts Bar Association.


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Register for the Oct. 26-27 Annual Family Law Conference in Lenox

Conference to feature alimony reform discussion, more judges than ever before and legal experts in a board range of specialties

The Massachusetts Bar Association's Family Law Section Council invites you to its 22nd Annual Family Law Conference at the Cranwell Resort in Lenox -- featuring more judges than ever before as well as a discussion on the new alimony reform bill, six months after its enactment.

This conference will provide you with a unique opportunity to meet judges, socialize with colleagues and update your skills as you learn techniques and gain insights from our distinguished panel members consisting of judges and legal experts from a broad range of specialties. Learn more about conference programming from Family Law Conference Co-Chairs Marc E. Fitzgerald and Michael I. Flores in a recent Lawyers Journal article.

Friday, Oct. 26

  • 3 p.m. -- Registration
  • 4 p.m. -- Child Support Guidelines Task Force Review and Recent Case Update
  • 6 p.m. -- Welcome Reception

Saturday, Oct 27

  • 7:30 a.m. -- Breakfast and Registration
  • 8:30 a.m. -- Welcome and State of the Trial Court
  • 9 a.m. Session I: The New Era of Alimony -- Alimony One Year After the Alimony Reform Act
    10:30 a.m. -- Break
  • 10:45 a.m. Session II: Demystifying the GAL Process -- Explanation and Preparation for your Client
  • Noon -- Lunch
  • 1 p.m. Session III: Parenting Plans Focusing on the Best Interests of the Children
  • 3 p.m. -- Closing Remarks

Click here to register.
Click here
for a full conference schedule and faculty list.

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Featured member benefit: Clio

Belong to the MBA and receive a 10 percent lifetime discount on the #1 cloud-based legal practice management system for solos and small firms

Clio is a 100 percent web-based legal practice management system optimized to meet the needs of sole practitioners and small firms. Web-based, secure and easy-to-use, Clio overcomes many of the technical hurdles offered by conventional practice management solutions. Clio allows lawyers to simplify their workflow, thus freeing up valuable time to build their practice.

A NEW MBA member benefit, Clio is regularly $49/month for attorneys and $25/month for non-attorney support staff. Massachusetts Bar Association members receive a 10 percent lifetime discount on their Clio subscription, bringing the monthly cost to $44.10 for attorneys and $22.50 for non-attorney support staff. Sign up today.

** Valid MBA membership required.

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Tell us why you belong to the MBA

Christa Arcos feels her MBA involvement has been a personally rewarding experience that has also enhanced her career. Share your story.

Engaging conferences. Inspiring pro bono work. Welcoming networking events. You belong here, at the Massachusetts Bar Association.

Tell us why YOU belong. E-mail us at ibelong to share your story and be entered to win a FREE 2013-2014 MBA membership. E-mails must be received by Dec. 31, 2012. A winner will be selected on Jan. 14, 2013.

The MBA offers the legal community a wide array of professional development and volunteer opportunities.See why others belong.


NOTE: All testimonials shared by e-mail, mail and phone may be published in various MBA publications, posted on the MBA web site and its social media platforms, printed on marketing materials and used in advertising or for other related endeavors.

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Attorney vacancies at the U.S. Department of Justice

The U.S. Department of Justice has numerous attorney vacancies. All interested applicants are encouraged to apply, but due to temporary funding restrictions, the department may not be able to fill all of the currently advertised positions.

Click here to view a current list of available positions.

To learn more about the U.S. Department of Justice and its legal careers, click here.

In addition, every year over 1,800 volunteer legal interns serve in DOJ components and U.S. Attorneys' Offices throughout the country. Law students interested in a DOJ volunteer internship, should click here for opportunities.



Communication breakdown: The two things you can do on twitter

Everybody's telling you to 'engage' on social media, I'm sure. And, that's good advice. Marketing a small business, like a law practice, is different now than it used to be. It's no longer just about publication anymore; it's more about engaging over your published matter, and others'. But, then, I haven't told you what I think engagement means, either. At least, not yet . . .

At least on Twitter, I think that 'engagement' falls into one of two, admittedly broad, categories: Aggregation and Collaboration. When you're churning out microblog posts through Twitter, you're generally corralling your own or others' content (tags and linked blog posts, useful articles, events of interest, etc.; even statements, thought leadership-style posts and tips can be classified under this head) or you're directly or indirectly engaging another user/other users via conversations (through replies or mentions). @ Replies and @ Mentions are the engines of conversations on Twitter; and, RTs (retweets) are generally the mode by which others' content may be repurposed = forwarded. But, those are simple tools to learn; the theory is the more important takeaway.

Many lawyers and law firms are reticent to use Twitter, because they think it takes up too much time and/or because they have no idea what to post. Thinking in terms of this double-barreled approach makes it easier to formulate a plan (you can generally identify the two sorts of posts you're going to be making, and can line up those types easily enough = your own content pipelines, candidates for retweet and direct post) and to save time (if you can conceive of lining up your posts, you can use scheduling tools (like those available through HootSuite) to release them; and, you can block periods throughout the day, or even once a day, when you engage directly or indirectly within the construct of Twitter conversations). Furthermore, when you recognize the value inherent in content aggregation, where you are also viewed as the expert because you're passing along a running collection of vetted tips in certain categories, the idea of 'content production' becomes less daunting, because it's no longer all on you. Twitter, then, becomes the perfect venue for promoting your expertise (and so marketing yourself effectively), whether through the reproduction of your own content or through the warehousing/cataloguing of others'. And, ideally, you'll use both methods in combination.

For more Twitter tips, you can now purchase my new American Bar Association book, 'Twitter in One Hour for Lawyers,' at a 15 percent discount.

Tip courtesy of Jared Correia, Law Office Management Assistance Program.

Published October 4, 2012


To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section, which is complimentary for all MBA members, contact LPM Section Chair Thomas J. Barbar or Vice Chair Cynthia E. MacCausland.

Upcoming CLE seminar and program schedule

Learn intellectual property law basics at the Oct. 9 "Intellectual Property Basics for the Non-Specialist" seminar.

CLE Heading

To register for the following programs, call MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530, [e-mail membership] or visit the CLE Web site. Scroll down for program details, including dates and registration details.

Recorded program Recorded session available for purchase after live program through MBA On Demand.

Live program Real-time webcast available for purchase through MBA On Demand.


Making Your Job Easier with ADR
Thursday, Oct. 4, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Boston College Law School, 885 Centre St., Newton

Intellectual Property Basics for the Non-Specialist
Live program
Tuesday, Oct. 9, 4-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Training Related to Dookhan and Other DPH Cases Live program
Wednesday, Oct. 10, 4-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Juvenile & Child Welfare Legal Chat Series Live program
Friday, Oct. 19, 1-2 p.m.
NOTE: There is no on-site attendance for Legal Chats.

The New Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code Live program
Wednesday, Oct. 24, noon-4 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

22nd Annual Family Law Conference
Recorded program
Friday, Oct. 26-Saturday, Oct. 27
Cranwell Resort, Spa & Golf Club, 55 Lee Road, Lenox


Sixth Annual Public Law Conference Live program
Thursday, Nov. 1, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

11th Annual Western Massachusetts Bankruptcy Conference
Thursday, Nov. 8, 4-7 p.m.
Western New England University School of Law, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield


MBA On Demand

Unable to attend September seminars? Practitioners who were not able to attend MBA CLE programs in September can now view select programs on MBA On Demand. MBA On Demand is an innovative MBA member benefit that offers you the opportunity to watch an MBA program from the comfort of your home or office, at a time that suits your schedule.

In addition, watching an MBA seminar or conference just got easier. All previously recorded MBA On Demand programs are now available anytime, anywhere on your mobile device.  

September CLE programming now available includes:

To view a listing of current programs offered on MBA On Demand, click here.

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Section News: Upcoming meetings and special section events

Attend the Oct. 9 Family Law and Health Law section council meetings. Join in the Oct. 10 Immigration Law and Juvenile & Child Welfare section council meetings.

Family Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Oct. 9, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Family Law Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 9 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Health Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Oct. 9, 5:15-6:45 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Health Law Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 9 from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Immigration Law Section Council meeting

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 4:30-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Immigration Law Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 10 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Juvenile & Child Welfare Law Section Council Meeting

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Juvenile & Child Welfare Law Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 10 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


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