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ABA meeting serves as one-stop source for information on emerging legal trends


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ABA meeting serves as one-stop source for information on emerging legal trends

By John Glynn

CHICAGO, April 17, 2014 — Attorneys at all levels of practice will gather to exchange ideas with some of the most successful professionals in the legal industry at the first-ever American Bar Association Joint Spring Meeting on nontraditional delivery of legal services May 1-3 in Las Vegas.     


Joint Spring Meeting    
Sponsored by the ABA Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division, Group Legal Services Association and ABA Standing Committee on Group and Prepaid Legal Services

May 1-3

Aria Resort and Casino
3730 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89158-4300

The joint conference was the brainchild of Judge Jennifer Rymell, chair of GPSolo, and GLSA President Gerald “Pat” Monks. The State Bar of Nevada’s newly formed Solo and Small Practice Section is also participating. “Given the overlap of group legal plan attorneys and solo and small firm attorneys, working together was a natural fit,” Rymell said.

Group legal services plans are frequently sold as a voluntary employee benefit and provide a wide variety of personal legal services for a monthly fee. Most of the lawyers providing the legal services for the plans are solo or small-firm practitioners.

The conference will cover a wide range of topics, including building a practice with group legal, drafting a will and understanding technology in the small law office. Attendees can also participate in a variety of networking opportunities, including a poolside reception on May 1 and scheduled “power networking” sessions.

Among the conference highlights are:

“The Wide World of Advertising Law — A Look at Past Disasters and Future Challenges” — There is something to be learned from campaigns that have gone wrong — not just to understand what happened, but also to see how the sponsor dealt with the situation and how the legal rights of the parties were determined. This presentation provides a lighthearted yet informative look at a few of the most famous (and not-so-famous) examples over the past 25 years, as well as a peek at some of the issues that advertisers and sponsors may face in the future, including with privacy and “Big Data.”
Thursday, May 1, 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.

“State of the Legal Industry” — This session brings together professionals from every segment of the group legal services industry to discuss the past year and new issues being raised this year. Hear from for-profit plan administrators, a union plan administrator and a longtime provider about the legal plans world. Topics will include the effects of the economy, federal legislation, federal case law and the changing legal industry.
Thursday, May 1, 1:40 – 2:40 p.m.

“What Every Practitioner Should Know About Immigration Law” — This presentation will provide a general overview of immigration law, including a historical background, current law, common applications and intersections with other areas of law.
Thursday, May 1, 4 – 5 p.m.

“Defense of Marriage Act” — Last year, the Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act, throwing into question how individual states’ laws would work with the new federal statutes. This session will survey same-sex marriage laws across the country and include discussions about the history of DOMA, recent legal developments and how corporations (and possibly local governments) are reacting to the changes.      
Saturday, May 3, 8:30 – 9:30 a.m.

A complete agenda can be found online.  

This event is free and open to members of the press. For media credentialing, please contact Ali Cybulski at

With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary professional membership organizations in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.