Announcements

  • Join your colleagues in bettering the profession with the ISBA YLD Diversity Pledge

    The Iowa State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (YLD) recently launched its “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Pledge,” encouraging Iowa's legal employers to do their part to make the legal profession in Iowa more diverse, equitable and inclusive. The feedback so far has been very positive, with many firms signing on.

    "Thank you very much for developing this Diversity Pledge and publicizing it to the Iowa bar. I can’t tell you how moved I am by your action," wrote one retired attorney in response to the pledge rollout. "Your actions give me hope that our profession can change in meaningful and very needed ways."

    The pledge consists of voluntary, concrete action items that you and your legal employer can take, with a checklist to track your progress. The pledge concludes on April 1, 2022, so you have until then to complete the required number of items based on the size of your firm or office.

    “I have no doubt that most employers want to make DEI a priority, but many simply don’t know where to start,” said Abhay Nadipuram, YLD Diversity Committee co-chair. “The pledge is a great place to start for those employers who are looking for tools to make DEI a priority in their workplace."

    Legal employers that complete the pledge will be recognized in the Iowa Lawyer magazine, on the iowabar.org website and at ISBA Annual Meeting 2022.

  • How to participate in 2021 ABA Lobby Day

    Iowa attorneys who are ABA members are invited to join ABA President Patricia Lee Refo and bar leaders from across the country for a free annual lobbying event taking place April 20-21. ISBA leaders typically travel to Washington, D.C. for ABA Day, but this year it is all happening virtually, providing a unique opportunity for all attorneys to advocate on issues important to the legal profession from their home offices.

    The ABA's advocacy efforts this year focus on the pressing need for additional Legal Services Corporation funding due to the pandemic and proposed legislation to strengthen judicial security. Find out how you can get involved by clicking here.
  • Reminder: Email security made easy now free to members

    Emailing your client is convenient, but are you confident that it is safe? The ISBA has partnered with Trustifi to provide members a military-grade security service to better protect their firms and all communications. Beginning in 2021, the ISBA provided Trustifi email encryption free of charge to ISBA members. Support staff emails can be added for $25 per email annually.

    Click here to sign up for this service now. Members who have already registered for the service will have it renewed without any future invoices. For more information, visit the Trustifi FAQ page, or request a demonstration.
  • YLD launches "Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Pledge" for Iowa's legal employers

    The Iowa State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (YLD) is committed to increasing diversity, equity and inclusion within Iowa’s legal profession. Many lawyers want to be part of the solution but lack direction on what attorneys can do to help make the profession more diverse, equitable and inclusive.

    Therefore, the YLD Diversity Committee has created a new “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Pledge,” consisting of voluntary, concrete action items that legal employers can take to be part of this important work. The pledge will begin tomorrow, April 1, and will conclude on April 1, 2022. You or your legal employer can start at any time, and those who complete the pledge will be recognized at the ISBA Annual Meeting in 2022.

    Click here to view the pledge action items and guidance for completion.

  • Iowa Supreme Court authorizes informal referrals to ILAP

    In order to help lawyers and judges who may be struggling with wellness, mental health and alcohol/substance abuse, the Iowa Supreme Court has authorized informal referrals from the Attorney Disciplinary Board to the Iowa Lawyers Assistance Program.

    The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has increased the stress on Iowa attorneys and judges both personally and professionally. The Iowa Lawyers Assistance Program exists to help attorneys and judges in dealing with sources of stress.

    See details in the order dated March 11. This order is effective immediately and shall remain in effect until further notice.

    The Iowa Lawyer Weekly has been publishing a weekly "Lawyer Wellness Corner" written by the director of the Iowa Lawyers Assistance Program. This week's column is entitled "What does a lawyer in need of help look like?" Please click here to view the Lawyer Wellness Corner page.
  • CLE and Client Security Reports Due March 10

    Active Iowa lawyers are required to file two reports, a CLE report and a Client Security report, by March 10 annually to maintain their law licenses. Both reports are filed via the online portal at the Iowa Court Admissions professional regulation site. Learn more about annual reporting requirements here.

    To aid you in completing your CLE report, the ISBA has compiled a list of all ISBA-sponsored CLEs, with credit information and activity ID numbers, that can be viewed here.

    Contact the ISBA CLE Department at (515) 697-7874, or email cle@iowabar.org, for questions concerning CLE credit of ISBA-sponsored events.
  • Place the 2021 ISBA Annual Meeting on Your Calendars

    The 2021 ISBA Annual Meeting is scheduled for June 7-11. Event organizers are working diligently to provide attendees the sensational collection of presentations the ISBA Annual Meeting is known for. Each day, live CLE presentations focusing on various practice areas will take place via a live webinar format.

    PROFESSIONAL TRACKS AVAILABLE

    • Ag Law
    • Attorney Wellness
    • Business Law
    • Case Law
    • Commercial and Bankruptcy
    • Diversity and Inclusion
    • Elder Law
    • Ethics
    • Family and Juvenile Law
    • Litigation
    • Probate
    • Real Estate

    SPECIAL PROGRAMMING for judges and the ISBA Young Lawyers Division

    Participants can attend one or multiple days of the conference to hear from some of the most acclaimed legal minds in Iowa and beyond – all while earning CLE credit from the comfort of their own home or office. 

    QUESTIONS?
    Please contact the ISBA CLE Department at cle@iowabar.org or 515-697-7874.

  • The need for meaningful connection has never been greater! Sign up as an ISBA leader

    By Anjie Shutts, ISBA President-elect
    Did you work remotely over the past year and miss the connections with your professional colleagues? Did you observe changes to your practice that made you wish you could help steer the legal profession to meet future challenges? Is your 2021 resolution to make new connections and further your career? Your best first step to accomplish these goals is to apply to serve on an ISBA section council or committee.

    The Iowa State Bar Association is currently accepting applications to serve on section councils and committees for 2021-2022. You can view the list of sections by visiting iowabar.org/sections; and the list of committees by visiting iowabar.org/committees. These small but incredibly influential groups, which span many practice and interest areas, are the lifeblood of our association. It is through them that we provide the services that are important to our members. These groups help put together CLE programs, propose legislation, create manuals and practice guides, and help the ISBA serve its members in countless other ways.

    Please go to iowabar.org/SectionSignUp to submit an online application for up to three section councils or committees by April 1. Please note that you must first be a member of a section to apply for a section council position. Each application will be evaluated, and I will make the appointments for these positions later in the spring, to take effect after the ISBA Annual Meeting in June.
  • Attorneys needed to serve as judges for virtual high school mock trial tournament

    By Jerry Schnurr III, ISBA President
    The Iowa High School Mock Trial Tournament is quickly approaching, and this year it is easier than ever for attorneys to serve as judges because the tournament will be conducted virtually.

    This year's high school preliminary rounds of competition will be held March 1 through March 13 (except Sunday, March 7), with the high school state tournament scheduled for March 23-26. Click here to view available judging slots for the regional tournament(s) and/or for the state tournament.

    All rounds will be conducted via Zoom and ballots will be done electronically. Volunteer judges will be asked to assess student performances as they take on the roles of attorneys and witnesses. Last year, more than 600 members of the bar assisted as judges and coaches in tournaments held throughout Iowa.

    You can volunteer by clicking on the "Register" link or by contacting ISBA Center for Law & Civic Education Director John Wheeler, at 515-697-7882 or jwheeler@iowabar.org.

  • New Iowa CLE requirements in 2021

    The Iowa Supreme Court has adopted the recommendation of the Commission on Continuing Legal Education that attorneys be required to take one hour of attorney wellness or diversity and inclusion each year. This adoption comes in light of national efforts, particularly by the American Bar Association, to encourage all states to require their lawyers to take courses in diversity and mental health and substance abuse. Learn more about the new CLE requirements here.

    Under Iowa Court Rule 41.3(2) attorneys will be required to take one hour of attorney wellness CLE or one hour of diversity and inclusion CLE as part of their 15-hour annual CLE requirement. Attorneys will also be required to take one hour of “traditional” legal ethics.

    The new requirement is in effect for the calendar year 2021 reporting period, beginning Jan. 1, 2021, and ending Dec. 31, 2021. No courses offered or activities taken prior to Jan. 1, 2021, will be eligible for the new attorney wellness or diversity and inclusion CLE requirement. Attorneys will submit the CLE they attended in calendar year 2021 on their 2022 CLE Reports, which must be filed on or before March 10, 2022.
  • Safe Harbors and Calm Seas: Navigating Risk in Law Practice (Live Webinar)


    REGISTER ONLINE

    A mistake may damage an attorney’s case and might also threaten the relationship with a client or even a position at a firm. But failing to respond appropriately to a mistake will jeopardize a legal professional’s license and career. This live webinar presentation will examine an attorney’s duties related to error disclosure, what those duties require and why attorneys should take these duties seriously.


    SPEAKERS
    Theresa Garthwaite, Risk Control Specialist, Lawyers Professional Liability, CNA Global Specialty Lines
    Matthew Fitterer, Risk Control Attorney, CNA Insurance

    SPECIAL OFFER
    ISBA members who attend this CLE and are CNA policy holders are eligible to receive up to a 7.5% credit on their policy premium for two policy years. The discount is per lawyer and will be applied at the next insurance renewal.

    If you are insured by CNA please remember to include your CNA policy number when you are registering for this webinar. You can find your policy number at the top of your declaration page of your policy.

    CLE CREDIT (approved)
    2 state hours which includes 2 ethics hours

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members  - $65
    ISBA YLD Members (Years 1-3) - $35
    Non-ISBA Members - $80
    Law Students - Free

    Sponsored by Lockton Affinity, CNA and The Iowa State Bar Association

  • 2020 ISBA CLE credit information now available

    To assist attorneys with the reporting of their 2020 CLE credits, the ISBA has created this event list which includes CLE titles, state, ethics and juvenile credit and activity numbers for each program. Credit information for ISBA On-Demand CLE and Fastcase events can also be found on this page. The information should be used to calculate CLE hours when attorneys file their CLE report with the Commission on Continuing Legal Education. Annual reports are due by March 10.

    The Commission on Continuing Legal Education requires Iowa’s lawyers and judges to complete a minimum of 15 hours and two ethics hours (ethics reporting required in 2021) of legal education accredited by the commission each calendar year. This requirement helps ensure that lawyers and judges keep abreast of the latest legal developments.

    Contact the ISBA CLE Department at (515) 697-7874 or email cle@iowabar.org for questions concerning CLE credit of ISBA-sponsored events.

    Learn more about annual reporting requirements.
  • Special 13-week Mediation CLE Event Begins Feb. 4

    Join nationally-recognized mediators, authors and educators Richard Calkins, Joe Happe and Case Ellis for Mediation and Arbitration Techniques: 40 Hours of Insights, a 13-week live webinar series accredited for 40 hours of state CLE.

    The series takes place Feb. 4 - Apr. 29, meeting every Thursday from 3-6:15 p.m., via Zoom. It will include an introduction to mediation, the caucus form of mediation, qualities of a peacemaker, ethical considerations, mediating by Zoom, other alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, advanced mediator techniques and arbitration. The program has considerable hands-on training and requires each participant to complete two full mediations as a mediator.

    Event organizers encourage interested parties to register early as attendance is limited to the first 21 registrants. 

  • What to expect out of the 2021 legislative session

    The 2021 Iowa Legislative Session begins on Monday, Jan. 11, the same day that you are invited to join the ISBA Legislative Counsel team for a preview of priorities and expectations for the legislative year ahead.

    A free 2021 legislative preview live webinar event is scheduled for the noon hour on Monday, Jan. 11, sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association Government Practice Section. Click here to register for this free event.

    Speakers include ISBA Assistant Legislative Counsels Doug Struyk and Jenny Dorman, of Carney & Appleby PLC. They will discuss the ISBA Affirmative Agenda, potential issues that may emerge during the session and the impact of the state budget. The seminar is approved for one hour of state CLE credit.
      
  • Greater value in 2021! Trustifi email encryption now offered free to members

    By Dwight Dinkla, ISBA Executive Director
    Never before have we been so ready to turn the page to a new year. Now that 2020 has finally come to an end, The Iowa State Bar Association is more committed than ever to help our members succeed. Our New Year’s resolution is to provide you even more value in 2021.

    As part of fulfilling this commitment to our members, we wish to announce that in 2021, we will begin to offer our email security service provided by Trustifi free to all members. (Licenses for support staff can be purchased for $25 annually.) Click here for more information and to learn how to sign up.
  • ILAP is here for you - Please reach out!

    From Dan Moore, President, Iowa Lawyers Assistance Program Board of Directors


    Please know that the Iowa Lawyers Assistance Program (ILAP) has always been, and especially now at this time of world-wide crisis, ready, willing and able to offer our help to Iowa lawyers, judges and law students who may be struggling.

    The members of the board of directors offer to share their experience, strength and hope with others. Additionally, members of The Iowa State Bar Association’s Lawyers Helping Lawyers Committee are available. These services are in addition to contacting our ILAP Director Hugh Grady. Please remember that all communications are confidential. Click here for information about who to contact if you are struggling.

  • Notice of pending elections for State Judicial Nominating Commission

    Nominating petitions are now available for those who wish to have their names listed on the ballot to fill State Judicial Nominating Commission positions with terms that will expire on June 30, 2021. Click here for details.

    To obtain a nominating petition, or for more information about the upcoming vacancies, the legal requirements to serve on a commission and the elections, visit the Iowa Judicial Nominating Commission website.

    If you wish to learn more about becoming a State Judicial Nominating Commissioner, read Article V, sections 15 and 16 of the Iowa Constitution and Iowa Code Chapter 46.

  • Meet your CLE requirements with the ISBA

    The ISBA is dedicated to meeting member’s CLE needs as the year comes to an end. With the bar’s upcoming schedule of live webinars and more than 30 on-demand courses available, look to the ISBA to satisfy your CLE requirements of 15 state hours and two ethics hours (ethics reporting required in 2021).

    End-of-year live webinars include:
    • Federal Practice Seminar – Dec. 11
    • Furloughs, Reductions in Force and Layoffs – Dec. 29
    • Avoiding the Ditches of Zealous Advocacy: A Review of the Rules and Cases – Dec. 31

    Visit the ISBA CLE Program overview page for all available options. For additional information regarding CLE requirements, visit the Office of Professional Regulation website.

    QUESTIONS?
    Please contact the ISBA CLE Department at cle@iowabar.org or 515-697-7874.

  • Federal Practice Seminar - Dec. 11

    Whether new to federal practice or an experienced attorney, brush up on the basics and more at the 2020 Federal Practice Seminar. Attendees will hear from Gilbert King, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Devil in the Grove” as well as from members of Iowa’s federal judiciary during the various judges’ panels scheduled.

    REGISTER TODAY

    SCHEDULE
    8:10 – 8:15 - Welcome
     - Speaker: Leslie Behaunek, Federal Practice Chair
    8:15 – 9:15 - Article III Judges Panel - Moderator: Prof. Laurie Doré, Drake University Law School
    9:15 – 9:20 - Break
    9:20 – 10:20 - U.S. Magistrate Judges Panel
    - Moderator: Prof. Emily Hughes, University of Iowa Law School
    10:20 – 10:30 - Break
    10:30 – 12:00 - Equal Justice Under Law: Legal Heroes and Judicial Courage at the Dawn of a New America
    – Speaker: Gilbert King, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "Devil in the Grove"
    Moderator: Megan Flynn, Coppola, McConville, Carroll, Hockenberg & Flynn, P.C.
    12:00 – 1:00 - Break
    1:00 – 2:00 - Eighth Circuit Judges Panel
    2:00 – 2:10 - Break
    2:10 – 3:40 - Diversity and Ethics
    - Moderator: Tim Hill, Bradley & Riley PC; Panel: Hon. Ignacio Torteya III, United States Magistrate Judge for the Southern District of Texas; Alfredo Parrish, Parrish Kruidenier; Leslie Behaunek, Nyemaster Goode PC; Andrea Jaeger, Keegan, Tindal & Jaeger; and Kimberly Cullen, University of Iowa Law Student
    3:40 – 3:50 - Break
    3:50 – 5:00 - COVID-19 in the Courtroom
    - Moderator: Andrea Jaeger, Keegan, Tindal & Jaeger; Panel: Ed Crowley, Crowley & Prill; Andrew Dunn, Parrish Kruidenier; Jack Dusthimer, Dusthimer Law Office; Diane Helphrey, Federal Public Defender’s Office, Southern District of Iowa; and Nate Nieman, Nieman Law

    CLE CREDIT (pending)
    7 state hours which includes 1.5 ethics hours

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members - $140
    YLD Members (Years 1-3) - $110
    YLD Members (Years 4-5) - $120
    Non-ISBA Members - $275
    Law Students and Federal Law Clerks - Free

    Sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association Federal Practice Committee

    QUESTIONS
    Please contact the ISBA CLE Department at cle@iowabar.org or 515-697-7874.

  • Sign up now for COVID-19 Case Alerts through Fastcase

    Fastcase has announced the launch of COVID-19 Case Alerts, a free email alert service to keep subscribers aware of new civil opinions, selected pleadings, breaking news and analyses of legal issues related to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Each business day, Fastcase will deliver a snapshot of the day’s legal developments on COVID-19, consolidated into a single email organized by topic. This service is available free to ISBA members through the Fastcase 7 App. Click the Apps & Tools grid to sign up for the daily email. For more information, please click here.
  • Upcoming CLE Includes Special Insurance Offer

    Safe Harbors and Calm Seas: Navigating Risk in Law Practice
    Nov. 19
    12:00 - 2:00 p.m.

    REGISTER ONLINE


    SPEAKERS

    Theresa Garthwaite, Risk Control Specialist, Lawyers Professional Liability, CNA Global Specialty Lines
    Matthew Fitterer, Risk Control Attorney, CNA Insurance

    SPECIAL OFFER
    ISBA members who attend this CLE and are CNA policy holders are eligible to receive up to a 7.5% credit on their policy premium for two policy years. The discount is per lawyer and will be applied at the next insurance renewal.

    If you are insured by CNA please remember to include your CNA policy number when you are registering for this webinar. You can find your policy number at the top of your declaration page of your policy.

    CLE CREDIT (approved)
    2 state hours which includes 2 ethics hours

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members  - $65
    ISBA YLD Members (Years 1-3) - $35
    Non-ISBA Members - $80
    Law Students - Free

    Sponsored by Lockton Affinity, CNA and The Iowa State Bar Association
  • Reminder: ISBA policy on postings to listserves, social media

    The ISBA has a long-standing policy which generally provides that it is impermissible to upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available on the association’s listserves or social media outlets any unsolicited or unauthorized advertising/ promotional materials – including non-ISBA sponsored CLE programs – or any other form of solicitation. The policy applies to attachments as well.

    The ISBA routinely receives requests from law-related nonprofit organizations looking for assistance in promoting their CLE and other education events. While the ISBA supports the valuable work of these organizations, it must limit its resources to promotion of non-ISBA events unless it is a designated partner of a particular event. Requests for promotion of nonprofit CLE events will be handled initially in the same manner as a commercial CLE event; the ISBA Communications Department and/or the executive director will discuss the various options for purchasing access to ISBA members such as advertising in The Iowa Lawyer magazine or the Iowa Lawyer Weekly electronic newsletter.

    Nonprofit organizations may submit news items to the ISBA for consideration in one of the ISBA’s publications. The decision to publish remains within the discretion of the ISBA. In addition, the ISBA may use discretion in offering advertising space discounts to nonprofit organizations.

    The ISBA does not sell or distribute its members’ email addresses to any non-ISBA groups, agencies, institutions, associations, or vendors for any commercial, political or informational purposes.

  • Judges needed as Middle School Mock Trial Tournament kicks off virtually this month

    The Iowa Middle School Mock Trial Tournament begins in November, and this year it is easier than ever for attorneys to serve as judges.

    Preliminary rounds will be held virtually (via Zoom) Nov. 9-21, with the state tournament scheduled for Dec. 1-4. Unlike previous requests to judge, you will not have to leave the comfort of your home or office in order to participate. You only need time, interest and a good internet connection. Please check your schedule and click here to view available slots and register.

    Mock trial is designed to introduce students to Iowa's legal system by providing a challenging academic competition with opportunities for personal growth and achievement, emphasizing the importance of research, presentation and teamwork. Last year, more than 2,000 students from across Iowa participated in the Iowa mock trial program, and more than 600 members of the Iowa bar assisted as judges and coaches in tournaments held throughout the state. Without the assistance of volunteer judges, these competitions would not be possible.

    For more information, contact ISBA Center for Law & Civic Education Director John Wheeler at 515-697-7882 or jwheeler@iowabar.org.

  • 2020 Federal Practice Seminar (Live Webinar)

    Whether new to federal practice or an experienced attorney, brush up on the basics and more at the 2020 Federal Practice Seminar. Attendees will hear from Gilbert King, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Devil in the Grove” as well as from members of Iowa’s federal judiciary during the various judges’ panels scheduled.

    SCHEDULE
    8:10 – 8:15 - Welcome
     - Speaker: Leslie Behaunek, Federal Practice Chair
    8:15 – 9:15 - Article III Judges Panel - Moderator: Prof. Laurie Doré, Drake University Law School
    9:15 – 9:20 - Break
    9:20 – 10:20 - U.S. Magistrate Judges Panel
    - Moderator: Prof. Emily Hughes, University of Iowa Law School
    10:20 – 10:30 - Break
    10:30 – 12:00 - Equal Justice Under Law: Legal Heroes and Judicial Courage at the Dawn of a New America
    – Speaker: Gilbert King, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "Devil in the Grove"
    Moderator: Megan Flynn, Coppola, McConville, Carroll, Hockenberg & Flynn, P.C.
    12:00 – 1:00 - Break
    1:00 – 2:00 - Eighth Circuit Judges Panel
    2:00 – 2:10 - Break
    2:10 – 3:40 - Diversity and Ethics
    - Moderator: Tim Hill, Bradley & Riley PC; Panel: Hon. Ignacio Torteya III, United States Magistrate Judge for the Southern District of Texas; Alfredo Parrish, Parrish Kruidenier; Leslie Behaunek, Nyemaster Goode PC; Andrea Jaeger, Keegan, Tindal & Jaeger; and Kimberly Cullen, University of Iowa Law Student
    3:40 – 3:50 - Break
    3:50 – 5:00 - COVID-19 in the Courtroom


    CLE CREDIT (pending)
    7 state hours which includes 1.5 ethics hours

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members - $140
    YLD Members (Years 1-3) - $110
    YLD Members (Years 4-5) - $120
    Non-ISBA Members - $275
    Law Students and Federal Law Clerks - Free

    Sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association Federal Practice Committee


  • Spread the Word! Cady Day is this Friday

    The inaugural Mark S. Cady Day of Public Service will be held this Friday, Oct. 23. Attorneys throughout the state are encouraged to participate in some form of public service or pro bono work on this day to honor and celebrate the life and legacy of former Chief Justice Cady.

    To celebrate, The Iowa State Bar Association is co-sponsoring a virtual community event called "Your Vote. Your Voice. Our Democracy." The presentation is designed to highlight the history of voting rights and educate voters so they have the information they need to exercise their rights in the 2020 election. This free event will take place between noon and 1 p.m. this Friday, Oct. 23. To register, click here.

    More Cady Day info:
    • Are you still looking for ideas on how to participate? Click here for a list of projects.
    • Want to register your project? You can do so here.
    • Have questions? Contact Drake Law School's Theresa Howard at theresa.howard@drake.edu.
    • Willing to share your project with the ISBA for possible publication? Take pictures and send them to communications@iowabar.org
  • IowaDocs® prepares for transition to new form creation program

    The Iowa State Bar Association is preparing for a major change coming later this year to its IowaDocs® platform. XpressDox will become the new software provider that drives the creation of forms.

    IowaDocs® is now over 20 years old and has always run under the HotDocs software, but with changes in HotDocs ownership, technology changes and the move to cloud computing, ISBA leadership believed it was in the best interest of IowaDocs® users to switch to a different engine.

    "IowaDocs® is vitally important to our membership as a service to create forms in a timely, easy manner. After weighing all options, we felt this switch was the best way to continue delivering this service for our attorneys and their staffs," says Harry Shipley, ISBA Assistant Executive Director.

    The ISBA is asking IowaDocs® power users (attorneys and/or support staff) to assist in testing the new system in XpressDox before its official launch Dec. 1. If you are interested in doing so, or have questions in the meantime, please contact support@iowadocs.net.
  • 2020 Judicial Performance Review results released

    The Iowa State Bar Association has released the results of its performance evaluation of the 95 judges standing for retention in this year’s November general election. The ISBA biennially conducts a survey of its attorney members and compiles the results to give voters information on which to base their decisions about keeping a judge on the bench.

    Full results of the 2020 Judicial Performance Review are now available on the ISBA website: iowabar.org, or judicialfacts.org.

    Attorneys evaluated the 87 district court judges, four court of appeals judges and four supreme court justices on the ballot based on a number of performance characteristics, including knowledge and application of the law and demeanor. Nearly 1,500 attorneys responded, and the Fair and Impartial Courts Committee would like to thank all ISBA members who participated.

    Click here to view a video message from Fair and Impartial Courts Committee Chairman Guy Cook about the 2020 evaluation results and Iowa's upcoming retention election.
  • YLD to participate in 21-Day Equity Challenge, and you can too!

    The ISBA Young Lawyers Division (YLD) is committed to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. In partnership with its Diversity Committee, the YLD will participate in United Way of Central Iowa's 21-Day Equity Challenge from Oct. 5 to Nov. 2. Participants receive an email each weekday with links to relevant articles, podcasts and videos. The challenge, which is completely free, is aimed to teach participants about racism and inequity in Iowa's communities and will include topics like privilege, housing and redlining, justice system inequities and allyship.

    "I’ve come to understand that the most important job I have is to be a good listener and to be willing to learn, even when the content of the conversations are tough and uncomfortable," said Gabe Walsh, chair of the YLD Diversity Committee. "The 21-Day Equity Challenge will allow our members to listen and learn from these conversations, and hopefully take something that will help make our legal community more open, inclusive and understanding of issues involving race, and how they impact the important work we do.”

    To participate in the challenge, please visit the United Way's website and sign up with 'Iowa State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division' as your designated organization.
  • Fundamentals of Federal Practice Seminar - Oct. 6

    2020 Fundamentals of Federal Practice Seminar
    Oct. 6
    8 AM - 12 PM
    Live Webinar

    This live webinar is designed for attorneys new to federal practice as well as experienced attorneys looking to refine their skills.

    Click here to register

    SCHEDULE

    8:00 - 8:30 - Discovery and Settlement Conferences – Speaker: Magistrate Judge Stephen Jackson, U.S. District Court for the for the Southern District of Iowa
    8:30 - 9:15 - Back to Basics: General Overview of Criminal Sentencing – Speaker: Brad Hansen, Federal Public Defender
    9:15 - 9:45 - Experts and Professional Witnesses: How to Get Them, How to Use Them and How to Cross Them – Speaker: Judge CJ Williams, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa
    9:45 - 10:00 - Break
    10:00 - 10:30 - Pleadings and Motions
    – Speaker: Chief Magistrate Judge Kelly Mahoney, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa
    10:30 - 11:00 - Trends in the Federal Courts: Procedures, How to Navigate and Best Practices for Lawyers
    – Speaker: Frank Severino, Chief Deputy Clerk of Court, Southern District of Iowa
    11:00 - 12:00 - Federal Practice with Panel of Attorneys with Less than 10 Years’ Practice – Speakers: Josh Weir, Dornan Lustgarten & Troia, PC, LLO; Ryan Fisher, Bradley & Riley PC; Alex Barnett, Lane & Waterman LLP; Gina Christensen Messamer, Parrish Law Firm; and Andrea Jaeger, Keegan, Tindal & Jaeger

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members - $90
    ISBA YLD Members (Years 1-3) - $50

    Non-ISBA Members - $150
    Law Students - Free

    CLE CREDIT (approved)
    3.75 state hours 

    Sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association Federal Practice Committee
  • ISBA People's Law School - Sept. 10

    ISBA People's Law School (COVID-19 Series): Employment, Small Business and Housing
    Sept. 10
    5:30 - 7:00 p.m.
    Live Webinar

    The Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Legal Aid and the Polk County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, are co-hosting a free public information session on COVID-19 related legal issues on Thursday, Sept. 10. This session will focus on developments in employment, small business and housing related laws.

    Please help make this event a success by sharing event information with your clients and community.

    SPEAKERS
    Alex Kornya, Iowa Legal Aid Litigation Director & General Counsel
    Samantha Wagner, Iowa Legal Aid Community Economic Development Project Staff Attorney.

    This free event is for the public
  • Help Iowans navigate the legal ramifications of the derecho disaster

    A toll-free disaster legal advice hotline is now available to residents in Linn County impacted by the Aug. 10 derecho storm. This hotline is a partnership between Iowa Legal Aid, The Iowa State Bar Association, the ISBA Young Lawyers Division, the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, the Linn County Bar Association and the Polk County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project.

    The Derecho Legal Hotline is currently focused on storm victims with legal issues related to securing FEMA and other government benefits, insurance claims, home repair contracts, replacement of important legal documents destroyed in the disaster, consumer protection matters, landlord-tenant problems, business issues and more. The hotline phone number is 1-877-469-2259. Additional counties may be served by the hotline based on eligibility for FEMA individual assistance.

    Volunteer lawyers from a broad range of practice areas are needed to provide limited scope pro bono legal services. If you are interested in volunteering for this project, please contact ISBA Director of Innovation and Outreach Virginia Sipes at vsipes@iowabar.org, and indicate your practice areas in the email.
  • Pair of Supreme Court orders make amendments to rules regulating legal profession

    Chief Justice Susan Christensen signed two orders on Aug. 28 adopting amendments to Chapters 31, 32 and 41 of the Iowa Court Rules -- mostly related to the regulation of the legal profession.

    The amendments to Chapter 32, Iowa Rules of Professional Conduct, deal with such topics as unauthorized practice of law, advertising and solicitation of clients, and disciplinary authority. Read the full order here. Changes are effective Jan. 1, 2021.

    The amendments to Chapter 31 deal with registration of house counsel, and the amendments to Chapter 41 strike the cap on unmoderated CLE credit. The order summarizing their adoption, which is effective immediately, can be found here.

    From the Iowa Lawyer Weekly
  • A Special CLE Event

    Voting Rights, Hard Won, Not Done: Honoring the Legacy of the 15th and 19th Amendments
    Sept. 14
    12:00 - 1:00 PM
    Live Webinar

    This special CLE program will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the 15th Amendment, granting African American men the right to vote, and the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, granting women the right to vote.

    The noon-hour program will review the history of voting rights, honor the men and women who fought for voting rights and review recent action by Iowa leaders relating to voting rights in Iowa.

    SPEAKERS
    Henry Hamilton III, Administrative Law Judge
    Emily Chafa, Attorney at Law

    CLE CREDIT (approved)
    1 state hour

    REGISTRATION FEES
    ISBA Members - $30
    ISBA YLD Members (Years 1-5) - $20
    Law Students  - Free

    Sponsored by The Iowa State Bar Association Diversity and Inclusiveness Committee and Administrative Law Section
  • ISBA encourages all lawyers to participate in Cady Day of Public Service

    The Iowa State Bar Association has partnered with Drake University Law School to organize the first-ever Cady Day of Public Service on Friday, Oct. 23. The annual day of service, organized in collaboration with Iowa Legal Aid and the Polk County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, is dedicated to the late Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady, who passed away unexpectedly in 2019. His career as a public servant spanned nearly four decades and was marked by his devotion to the pursuit of justice for all Iowans.

    Members of The Iowa State Bar Association are asked to volunteer alongside Drake Law students, faculty and staff to carry on Cady's legacy. Click here to find out ways you can get involved in projects already underway. If you or your firm want to come up with your own project, please register your project so your participation in the inaugural Cady Day of Public Service is recognized. The ISBA will be announcing information about ISBA-sponsored events in the coming weeks.
  • Virtual Bridge the Gap Seminar offers 15 CLE credit hours

    The 2020 Bridge the Gap Seminar, sponsored by the ISBA Young Lawyers Division, is scheduled to take place virtually Sept. 10-11. This annual event provides a new generation of Iowa lawyers an in-depth look at various aspects of the profession from some of the most experienced attorneys in the state.

    The two-day live webinar event also gives legal professionals, no matter the years of experience, an opportunity to earn substantial CLE credit (15 state; 3 ethics; 1 juvenile).

    Presentations include:
    • Using Demonstrative Evidence at Trial - Tim Semelroth, RSH Legal
    • Mechanic’s Lien Law - Jared Adam, Shuttleworth & Ingersoll
    • Title Opinion Basics - Timothy Gartin, Hastings Gartin & Boettger LLP

    Visit the official event page for complete details and to register.
  • Updated Iowa Code and 2020 Iowa Court Rules now available for order

    The updated Iowa Code books and 2020 Iowa Court Rules are now available for order through the Legislative Services Agency online store or through the printed order form .

    The Iowa Code set is seven hardbound volumes which include all codified statutes (updated through the 2018 session), U.S. and Iowa Constitutions, multiple tables, notes and indexes. The cost is $50 and comes with the 2020 Iowa Law InfoBase download.

    The 2020 Iowa Court Rules book is one softbound volume of rules of practice, judicial administration and professional regulation at a cost of $25. Also available for purchase is the 2019 Iowa Acts book, a hardbound volume of statutes and joint resolutions, for $25; and the 2019-2020 Iowa Official Register, a hardbound volume of records and descriptions of Iowa's governmental institutions and officials, history, profiles, election law and educational institutions for $15.

    You can also download the Iowa Law InfoBase for $15, which includes searchable digital copies of the Iowa Constitution, Iowa Code, Iowa Acts, Iowa Administrative Code, Iowa Court Rules and other archived legal publications.
  • 2020 ISBA Annual Meeting videos available on-demand

    The Iowa State Bar Association has placed presentations from the 2020 ISBA Annual Meeting in its on-demand CLE catalog. These videos are currently available in special bundle packages (ag law, real estate, ethics, probate and case law) which can be purchased at discounted prices for ISBA members and YLD members (years 1-5).

    Annual meeting topics include:
    • Ethics During COVID-19
    • Hemp Farming in Iowa
    • Iowa Trust Code
    • Medicaid Issues
    • The State of Diversity and Inclusion in the Legal Profession

    To access these packages, click here and scroll to the bottom of the page. Members are required to sign-in to the catalog before making any purchases (sign-in information is the same as the iowabar.org site).

    The ISBA On-Demand CLE Catalog allows viewers the opportunity to watch the available recorded programming whenever they choose and can be credited toward their required CLE credit hours. In addition to the annual meeting videos, the catalog includes a collection of nearly 30 CLE presentations which can be viewed here.

    For questions, contact ISBA CLE Director Christy Cronin at cle@iowabar.org or 515-697-7874.
  • ISBA begins new year with solo practitioner from Fort Dodge as president

    During the ISBA Annual Meeting of the Corporation, held virtually on June 24, the gavel was passed from outgoing President Bill Boyd to incoming 2020-2021 President Jerry Schnurr III. Thirteen new Board of Governors members were also seated. You can read a recap of the reports and actions taken at the meeting here. You can learn more about Schnurr in this article from The Iowa Lawyer magazine.

    The Young Lawyers Division also welcomed its new president during its summer meeting on June 26. Torey Cuellar, an assistant county attorney in Story County, outlines her priorities for the upcoming year of the YLD here.

    From the Iowa Lawyer Weekly
  • New ISBA People's Law School - July 21

    ISBA People's Law School: COVID-19 Related Legal Information (Part II)
    July 21
    5:30 - 7:00 PM
    Live Webinar

    On Tuesday, July 21, The Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Legal Aid and the Polk County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, are co-hosting this free public information session focused on COVID-19 related legal issues including evictions, foreclosures, debt collection and stimulus payments.

    SPEAKER
    Alex Kornya, Iowa Legal Aid Litigation Director & General Counsel

    Help us make this event a success by spreading the word to your clients and other interested parties.
  • You're invited! First-ever virtual annual meeting of the members on June 24

    Each year during the ISBA's Annual Meeting convention in June, all ISBA members are invited to attend the Annual Meeting of the Corporation, which occurs as part of the Board of Governors' June quarterly meeting. Because the in-person annual meeting was cancelled this year due to the pandemic (and the CLE portion was held virtually in May), members are invited to instead attend the business meeting of members on Wednesday, June 24, online.

    This meeting, expected to last less than an hour, will be held via GoToMeetings beginning at 10 a.m. Please click this link to register. The agenda includes remarks from Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Susan Christensen, the deans of the two Iowa law schools, the ISBA Executive Director, and a report on the election of new officers which will include the passing of the gavel to new president Jerry Schnurr III.

    The Board of Governors quarterly meeting begins at 9 a.m. and members are welcome to sign in early on June 24 to attend virtually in advance of the 10 a.m. annual business meeting of the members.

    From the Iowa Lawyer Weekly
  • Upcoming ISBA People's Law School

    On Tuesday, June 16, The Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Legal Aid and the Polk County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, are co-hosting a free public information session focused on COVID-19 related legal issues including employment and housing.

    REGISTER HERE

    The live webinar takes place from 5:30-7:00 p.m. and will feature Alex Kornya, Iowa Legal Aid Litigation Director & General Counsel.

    For more information about the ISBA People’s Law School, visit here.