November 2008

Section News

Spring Meeting Preview
The ABA Section of Family Law will hold its spring meeting in Baltimore, MD, April 22-25, 2009, and promises a slate of CLE programming sure to fit your needs. Some of the programs will be produced in cooperation with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Sessions will focus on a variety of topics such as international law, ethics, law practice management, marital property, alternative dispute resolution, domestic violence, child support, alimony, custody, and more.

Assisted reproductive technology (ART) practitioners who find it difficult to obtain their annual CLE requirements will be pleased to learn that the Reproductive and Genetic Technologies Committee will be providing a program track of 7.5 CLE hours at the meeting. The committee will present both basic and advanced topics. Offerings will include (but are not limited to): state survey of ART law; nuts and bolts of an ART case from planning conception to birth certificate; drafting ART agreements; and an entertaining and informative ethics vignette.

For more information about the meeting--CLE topics, schedule, events, hotel/airport information, and online registration-- please visit the Conference website.

(Registration is not yet open, but you can reserve your hotel room now.)

We look forward to seeing you in Charm City in April!

2009 Trial Advocacy Institute
Register Now

Looking to improve your trial skills? Ready to immerse yourself in a weeklong experience learning from experts? Apply for a spot in the 2009 Trial Advocacy Institute, the nation's premier trial training program sponsored by the ABA Section of Family Law!

The Institute will take place May 16-23, 2009, at the University of Denver in Denver, Colorado, and enrollment is limited to 48 attorneys.

Tuition for the program is $3600, with a special discounted rate of $3400 for ABA Section of Family Law members, and is payable in full at the time of your application. This fee includes 7 full days of instruction including simulated trial practice, special workshops, course materials, textbooks, videotaping, daily lunches, transportation between the hotel and program site, and refreshment breaks. (Travel, lodging, and other meals are not included.)

For more information about the program, or to apply, visit the Trial Advocacy Institute website.


Confronting Mental Health Evidence: A Practical Guide to Reliability and Experts in Family Law
John A. Zervopoulos, Ph.D., J.D.

Product Code 5130156

Confronting mental health issues and materials in family law cases is often confusing, and, at times, daunting. This analytical and thoughtful book will provide you with a practical guide by which to address the key question to mental health professionals, "How do you know what you say you know?" and effectively challenge these experts' work and opinions.

More information

To order today, call the ABA Service Center at 800-285-2221 and request Product Code 5130156 or order online.

Buy Now!


Best of the List Serve

This month's Best of the FamLawEsq looks at managing a law practice in today's economy; parenting schedules for adolescents; and hearsay exceptions and online information.

Read more about this month's topics. (You will need to log in to the ABA website.)

Not on the list? All of our lawyer members are encouraged to join this popular discussion list. Read more about How to Join FamLawEsq in the Members Only section of our website.

CLE Calendar

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Get CLE Ethics Credit On Wednesday, December 3

December 3, 2008
Billing Pitfalls and Pratfalls: Avoiding the Ethical Issues That Snag Attorneys

Discover ways to avoid billing pitfalls while using best practice methods designed to prevent serious ethical dilemmas. You'll learn how to create a practice routine that will help you reduce complaints and challenges to your bills without forfeiting your hard earned attorney's fees. Faculty will discuss hot topic issues relating to retainer agreements, payments, and billing, the issues with accepting credit card payments as well as billing based on "value pricing" and the right to withdraw from "headache" cases.

Please note that this teleconference will take place from 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Eastern time (i.e., 11:00 a.m. Central, 10:00 a.m. Mountain, 9:00 a.m. Pacific)

View more details and register online

(Remember, you get a discount just for being a Section of Family Law member!)

Unable to attend a teleconference or a Section CLE conference? Not to worry, you can learn on your own time when you purchase the CLE materials.
See a listing of available CLE materials

AICPA Corner

A column by members of the AICPA's Forensic and Valuation Services Section
This month's column examines tax filing status in divorce, and includes a chart regarding filing status available to a spouse based upon alternative facts and circumstances.

   —This month's contribution is from Don DeGrazia, CPA/ABV/CFF, Gold Meltzer Plasky & Wise, P.A.,

Read this month's AICPA Corner: Tax Filing Status in Divorce (You will need to log in to the ABA website.)

Survey for Attorneys

Child Custody Evaluations Survey
An online survey is being conducted, through the Michigan Department of Community Health, of attorneys throughout the United States who deal with child custody cases. The researchers conducting the study are James Bow, Ph.D., Michael Gottlieb, Ph.D., and Dianna Gould-Saltman, Esq. The study explores attorneys' beliefs and opinions about child custody evaluations. The purpose of the study is to help child custody evaluators better understand the needs of attorneys and the court regarding these types of forensic evaluations. Completion of the survey should take about 15 minutes.

To begin the survey, please click on the link below.

Take the Survey

Tech Corner

Portable Scanners: Primer and Comparison
Portable scanners can help the mobile family lawyer manage travel receipts more effectively, organize collected business cards, and manage documents and photographs. If you're visiting clients off-site, your portable scanner also gives you the ability to make a record of key documents on the spot. Most portable scanners have the ability to scan documents ranging in size from a business card to a legal document or 14" in length and come bundled with value added software. The maximum width is usually 8 ½" (size of a regular piece of paper).

Continue reading this month's Tech Corner for features and comparison charts.
Portable Scanners

   —Tonya Johnson, ABA Legal Technology Resource Center

Ask Us! Is there a technology question that's been on your mind? Ask us about it! We may answer your question in a future edition of the eNewsletter. If there's some other technology you would like us to investigate, just e-mail Keep the Tech Corner working for you!



This month's
featured benefit:

ABA Member Advantage

What is it?
It's the ABA's way of saying thank you for being a member! Get great discounts on a variety of products and services.

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I love saving $! What do I have to do?
You really don't have to do anything. As an ABA member, you're already eligible for all the great discounts offered through ABA Member Advantage!

In some cases, you may need to mention a promo code, which is available from the Member Advantage website. (Or you may need to have your ABA member ID handy, but that's not any great hurdle. If you've forgotten or misplaced your ID number, just call the ABA Service Center at 1-800-285-2221 to request it.)

Visit the ABA Member Advantage website to learn more about your savings opportunities!


Hilary Glazer
Please send proposals for future content submissions to the editor.

Contact Information
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Fax: 312-988-6800

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