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DIALOGUE Fall 2009
VOL. 13, NO. 4
News and Perspectives from the ABA Division for Legal Services
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LRIS

Promoting LRIS in a Recession: Five Tips to Boost the Bottom Line
By Charles J. Klitsch

Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) programs have not been spared the effects of the current recession. Advertising budgets have stagnated or declined. A growing percentage of clients are unable to pay standard legal fees. Panel attorneys take longer to pay percentage fees due. Read more...


From the Chair...
By Sheldon Warren

I was recently at a large meeting of bar executives, Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) staff and volunteers at which a suggestion was made by one senior bar executive that the day when lawyer referral and information services should be regulated may have passed. Read more...


Pennsylvania's Notice to Defend Helps Clients, Lawyers, Courts and Lawyer Referral Service (LRS)
By Charles J. Klitsch

When a defendant first learns he is being sued, most jurisdictions provide him with little guidance. The first filing – whether it is called a summons, complaint or notice of suit – usually informs a defendant of the right to respond and the time limit for doing so. Read more...


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Delivery

From the Chair...
By Richard T. Cassidy

As I write this, there are signs we are pulling out of the economic recession and things are getting back to normal. However, “normal” for millions of Americans means they live from one paycheck to the next. Just as they do with health care, the working poor lack the discretionary income to pay for legal services when the need arises. Read more...

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IOLTA

Thinking Nationally: What Canadian Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Programs are Doing to Raise Revenues and Coordinate Grant-Making
By Barbara Palace

There’s strength in numbers.
This familiar phrase illustrates a recent trend among the Canadian IOLTA programs, which have begun to take a national approach to increasing revenues and creating effective grant-making processes. Read more...


From the Chair...
By Lora J. Livingston

It is my pleasure to return to the ABA Commission on Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) as its new Chair, especially after having served two terms as a member from 1995-2001. It is a particular honor to take the reins from the Commission’s Immediate Past Chair, Jon Asher, who provided fantastic leadership especially during these difficult times. Read more...


Grantee Spotlight: Legal Aid of Western Missouri Helps Communities Survive the Foreclosure Crisis
By Kelley Carpenter, Legal Aid of Western Missouri

As the foreclosure crisis swept across the country, stories of families losing their homes flooded the media. The subsequent impact these empty properties have on individual neighborhoods and the people left behind frequently remain hidden from the spotlight. Read more...

News and Notes

New Commission on Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Chair
The Commission on IOLTA is very pleased to welcome the Honorable Lora Livingston as its new Chair. Judge Livingston has served on the boards of the National Association of IOLTA Programs, Texas Equal Access to Justice Foundation, Texas Access to Justice Commission, Volunteer Legal Services (formerly Austin Lawyers Care), and Texas Center for the Judiciary.
Read more...

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LAMP

A Roadmap for Appointed Counsel Under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
By Mark E. Sullivan

For civilian lawyers, one of the more vexing scenarios presented by the Servicemember Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is what to do when appointed by a court to represent an absent servicemember under section 521 (b)(2) or (d)(2). Many lawyers have little knowledge of the Act, and often no clue as to how to take the necessary steps to find, notify and advise their new civil-law client. Read more...


From the Chair...
By Donald J. Guter, RADM JAGC USN (Ret.)

The impressive first operational year of the ABA Military Pro Bono Project, a program founded by the Standing Committee on Legal Assistance for Military Personnel, has tapped a deep reservoir of interest within the civilian bar in giving back to our active-duty American servicemembers. Read more...


Military Pro Bono Project Update
By Paul Haskins, Staff Counsel, Standing Committee on Legal Assistance for Military Personnel

One year after the idea of building a national pro bono referral highway from servicemember clients to civilian lawyers became a reality, case traffic is moving apace and the legal world is taking notice. Read more...

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Pro Bono

Pro Bono: In their Own Words
By The Standing Committe on Pro Bono and Public Service

2009 Award Recipients Discuss their Pro Bono Work
On August 3, 2009, the five recipients of the ABA Pro Bono Publico Award were honored at the Pro Bono Publico Awards Assembly Luncheon held during the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago. In the Summer 2009 issue of Dialogue, we profiled these individuals and some of their notable contributions in delivering pro bono legal services to the poor. Read more...


From the Chair...
By A. Michael Pratt

I am honored to have been appointed the Chair of the Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service and humbled that ABA President Lamm chose this country boy, born in Grindstone, Pennsylvania, to lead this important committee that does such meaningful work. Read more...


Policy News
By Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service

Tennessee Enacts Rules Permitting Government, Court Employee Pro Bono
Tennessee adopted a rule allowing judicial research assistants in the state to perform some pro bono work as well as a statute allowing government lawyers to do pro bono work. Read more...

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SCLAID

2009 Harrison Tweed Award Winners

Photos of the 2009 Harrison Tweed Award winners, the North Carolina Bar Association and the Philadelphia Bar Association Read more...

Updated: 11/23/2009

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