Division Announcements

Vol. 1, No. 1


Changes to Division Periodicals


GPSolo eReport: A New Monthly Publication for Division Members

This is the first issue of a new electronic publication: GPSolo eReport. The monthly enewsletter will combine elements of Solo, The Buzz, GPSolo Technology eReport, and GPSolo Law Trends & News. Division members will no longer receive Solo, The Buzz, GPSolo Technology eReport, and GPSolo Law Trends & News: just the new consolidated newsletter.


GPSolo Magazine

Another exciting change is under way in the printed periodicals that you receive as part of your membership in the Division. The last stand-alone issue of Best of ABA Sections will be mailed to you in late August. Starting in 2012, each issue of GPSolo magazine will contain several of these digested articles, selected especially for our readers from among the ABA’s top publications. Similarly, technology and practice management content is being worked into every issue of GPSolo magazine. “Road Warrior” is now a regular column, and starting next issue at least one feature article will focus on the legal technology relevant to each issue’s theme. The final stand-alone issue of the Technology & Practice Guide will be published in June 2012.


These changes will ensure that every print issue of GPSolo magazine and every electronic issue of GPSolo eReport delivers the content you need in a uniform, convenient, easy-to-navigate publication. We hope you will enjoy the changes!


Apex Award

The December 2010 issue of GPSolo magazine has won a 2011 APEX Award of Excellence in the category of Green Magazines & Journals. This Technology & Practice Guide issue, themed “The Greening of Your Law Practice,” explored how the latest technology and law practice strategies can lessen a law firm’s environmental impact—and save it money. (Check out the issue’s full contents for yourself.)


The APEX Awards for Publication Excellence Competition, a program of Communications Concepts, Inc., is now in its 23rd year. GPSolo magazine was chosen for recognition from a field of more than 3,300 entries in a variety of categories. Award winners were based on excellence in graphic design, editorial content, and success in achieving overall communications effectiveness and excellence.


Congratulations to Special Issue Editor Jeffrey M. Allen, 2010-2011 Editor-in-Chief jennifer j. rose, and all the issue’s contributors for this well-deserved honor.


Formal Opinion 11-458 (August 4, 2011)


Changing Fee Arrangements During Representation

The following Formal Opinion 11-458—Changing Fee Arrangements During Representation was recently released by the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility. This opinion is of great interest to the GPSolo members, and it should be used as a guide in raising fees in ongoing matters. A link is available via the Center for Professional Responsibility or directly from the following description. 


Modification of an existing fee agreement is permissible under the Model Rules, but the lawyer must show that any modification was reasonable under the circumstances at the time of the modification as well as communicated to and accepted by the client. Periodic, incremental increases in a lawyer’s regular hourly billing rates are generally permissible if such practice is communicated clearly to and accepted by the client at the commencement of the client-lawyer relationship and any periodic increases are reasonable under the circumstances. Modifications sought by a lawyer that change the basic nature of a fee arrangement or significantly increase the lawyer’s compensation absent an unanticipated change in circumstances ordinarily will be unreasonable. Changes in fee arrangements that involve a lawyer acquiring an interest in the client’s business, real estate, or other nonmonetary property will ordinarily require compliance with Rule 1.8(a).1.  Click here to read the Full Opinion.


If you have any questions, please contact the Center for Professional Responsibility.


Diversity Fellowship Program

The Diversity Committee has selected the four diversity fellows for the 2012 bar year. Frank Aba-Onu (Minneapolis, MN), Jasmin N. French (Indianapolis, IN), Rinky S. Parwani (Tampa, FL), and Eneida M. Roman (Boston, MA). We found all of the applications to be outstanding, and therefore we are pleased with the selections.


Young Lawyer Fellowship Program

The Young Lawyers Committee has selected the two young lawyer fellows for the 2012 bar year. Michael O. Walker (Norfolk, VA) and Jennifer L. Zahradnik (Belle Plaines, IA) were most impressive among the applicants. In addition to the fellowship, these two fellows have been appointed to other committees within the Division.


Difference Makers Awards

The ABA General Practice, Solo and Small Firm Division (ABA GPSolo) is pleased to announce a call for nominations for its annual Difference Makers Awards Program to recognize extraordinary lawyers who “make a difference” by breaking down barriers for women, people of color, and people with disabilities, regardless of sexual orientation. Winners will be honored at the ABA GPSolo’s 2011 Fall Meeting and National Solo & Small Firm Conference Awards program at the Westin Tabor Center in Denver, Colorado, on Friday, October 21. For more information or to submit your nomination, visit our website (Nominations are due September 9, 2011.)


Other Awards

Congratulations to Grant Beardsley, FY2011 GPSolo Law Student Division Liaison, on receiving the ABA Law Student Division’s 2011 Entity Liaison Award! The Division appreciates all of his hard work this past year.


Call for Officer and Council Nominations

The Nominating Committee will meet during the 2011 Fall Meeting in Denver, Colorado, from October 20–22 at the Westin Denver Downtown Hotel to nominate individuals for the positions of Division Secretary and Members-At-Large of the 2012–13 Council. In accordance with § 7.3.1 of the 2012 revised bylaws, the committee will nominate five Council Members-At-Large to serve four-year terms. Minority applicants are encouraged. The duties, terms of office, and eligibility requirements for each of the positions to be filled are outlined in the Division Bylaws.


Nominating Memo FY12


Nominating Questionnaire FY12


Please return your completed questionnaire to the Division Office via email at genpractice@americanbar.org or via fax at 312-988-5711 or mail directly to ABA, General Practice, Solo and Small Firm Division, 321 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL, 60654, postmarked by Monday, October 3, 2011.


Committee Webpages

All 2012 committee chairs are requested to submit committee webpage updates to Dee Lee at the Division Office at genpractice@americanbar.org. Chair's Message, Announcements, Discussion Items, Events, CLE and Resources should be provided in electronic Microsoft Word format.


Star of the Quarter

Each quarter, the Division’s group chairs of the four divisions acknowledge outstanding leadership in committee members as a “Star of the Quarter” for a recent project achievement toward the work of the Division. The “Star of the Quarter” recognition is presented to the recipient at each Division Meeting.

2011 Annual Meeting

Division 1: Administration
H. Stanley Riffle (Waukesha, WI), Budget Officer

Division 2: Member Benefits
Michael P. Hurley (Painesville, OH), Book Publications Board Chair

Division 3: Practice Specialty
Marc S. Stern (Seattle, WA), Bankruptcy Committee Co-Chair

Division 4: Practice Setting
Thomas L. Hemingway (Springfield, VA), Military Lawyers Committee Chair


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