SBM Business Law Section to Host Business Boot Camp Nov. 4-5, 2019 in Grand Rapids, Jan. 30-31 in Plymouth

GettyImages-1019266138The State Bar of Michigan Business Law Section will host “Business Boot Camp I (Grand Rapids): Basic Training for Every Business Lawyer” from November 4-5, 2019 at the Amway Grand Plaza in Grand Rapids, and from January 30-31, 2020 at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth.

This award-winning course will provide you with practical tools you can put to use immediately. In just two days you will receive grounding in eight key areas of business practice, with guidance from the leaders who handle them every day. They will teach you how to:

  • Develop confidence, attract clients, and impress partners
  • Meet the lawyers doing the deals you want to do
  • Learn the secrets of Michigan’s most successful business practitioners—our faculty describes the work they do day in and day out
  • Take home time-tested, proven forms and explanatory materials you can put to use immediately

The conference begins begins at 8:30 a.m. each day and runs until 4:30. 

The cost to attend the seminar is as follows: $200—individual; $80—law student; $1,000—firm (up to 15 participants). The price for an individual goes up $20 on September 30, 2019. The registration deadline is October 31, 2019 (Jan. 27 for Plymouth).

To register for Grand Rapids: online or mail form

To register for Plymouth: online or mail form

For more information, see the Program Brochure

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NCBE Testing Task Force 2019 Practice Analysis

PA_Survey_Social_Graphic1The Testing Task Force of the National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE) is interested in your insights regarding the job activities of newly licensed lawyers. Complete the Task Force’s nationwide 2019 practice analysis survey, which is gathering current data on the knowledge, skills, abilities, other characteristics, and technology newly licensed lawyers use to accomplish the job tasks they perform. To participate and learn more about the study, visit The results of this survey will be used by NCBE to develop the next generation of the bar exam and will benefit the profession as a whole. Let’s make sure the survey includes the voices of attorneys from our state!

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Human Trafficking Training on October 1

TraffickingjpgThe State Bar of Michigan, The Joseph Project, Lakeshore Legal Aid, D. Augustus Straker Bar Association, and the Oakland County Bar Association are partnering to offer a human trafficking training on Thursday, October 17, 2019, from 8:00 a.m.–noon. The Legal First Responders: Equipping Attorneys to Empower Human Trafficking Survivors training will be hosted by WMU-Cooley Law School at its Auburn Hills Campus. There will be a simultaneous broadcast of the training to WMU-Cooley’s campuses in Lansing and Grand Rapids. The event is free of charge with the commitment to accept a human trafficking referral on a pro bono basis within one year of the training.

Human trafficking is a growing problem all over the world. In the U.S., thousands of trafficking cases are reported each year. In Michigan, more than 400 victims of human trafficking were identified in 2017. Human trafficking is a crime perpetrated by those who commercially exploit others for sex and labor services through force, fraud, or coercion. Trafficking survivors often face legal obstacles that arise from the circumstances of their enslavement, yet, they frequently lack the means to secure legal assistance, creating a justice gap. Closing the justice gap requires the creation of a broad network of legal first responders—an army of attorneys who are equipped to service the legal needs of every identifiable trafficking survivor, at no cost. By leveraging the law and addressing the legal consequences of exploitation, pro bono attorneys can help transition survivors toward a better future.

The human trafficking training will help equip the growing network of legal first responders committed to helping trafficking survivors in Michigan. The training will be provided by attorneys and other subject matter experts with extensive experience providing services to human trafficking survivors and in-depth knowledge of many of the legal issues that affect them. Presenters include:

Jennifer Grieco
President, State Bar of Michigan

Amy Allen
Forensic Interviewer, Department of Homeland Security

Elizabeth Campbell
Clinical Assistant Professor of Law in the Human Trafficking Clinic, University of Michigan Law School

Kelly Carter
Senior Attorney Specialist, Human Trafficking Unit, Michigan Department of Attorney General

Nate Knapper
Founder & CEO, The Joseph Project

Ashley Lowe
CEO, Lakeshore Legal Aid

The intensive training is designed to provide attorneys with a solid foundation and understanding of the issues and obstacles survivors of trafficking frequently face that arise from the circumstances of their enslavement, including expungement, guardianship, and immigration issues.

This training has been approved by the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission for up to 3.5 hours of credit.

Register Today!

For general questions about the training, contact Robert Mathis at or (800) 968-1442, ext. 6412.

For substantive questions about human trafficking and what to expect when providing legal assistance to human trafficking survivors, contact Nate Knapper, Founder & CEO of The Joseph Project, at or (248) 497-0444.

For questions about MIDC credit, contact Merri Lee Jones at or (248) 334-3400.

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Young Lawyers Section Lunch & Learn—Tips & Tricks for Administrative Hearings & Appeals

GettyImages-961930880Brought to you by the Administrative and Regulatory Law Section in partnership with the Young Lawyers Section.

Date: Tuesday, August 20, 2019
Time: 11:30 a.m.–2:00 p.m.
Location: University Club of MSU, Lower Level Ballroom, 3435 Forest Rd, Lansing
Register: online or by mail form

To help ensure an accurate lunch count, registrations must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. on August 13.

Cost: $20 for Young Lawyers and Admin Law Section members; $25 for non-section members; $15 for law students.

Learn valuable insights from attorney Bret Totoraitis of Consumers Energy Company and William Fahey of Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes PLC about how to successfully present cases before Michigan administrative tribunals as well as best practices for being successful in administrative appeals.

Please direct any event questions to Dustin Kamerman at

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Information Technology Law Section eminar & Annual Meeting

Cyber1The Business Law and Government Law Sections are invited to attend this informative event.

Date: Thursday, September 12, 2019
Time: 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Location: Inn at St. John's, 44045 Five Mile Rd, Plymouth
Register: online or by mail form
Preregister by September 9, 2019

Costs: (includes seminar, breakfast, lunch, and a networking reception) Section Member Seminar Registration–$75; Section Student Member Seminar Registration–FREE*; Non-section Student Member Seminar Registration–$20*; All other seminar registrants–$125;

Section Annual Meeting (does not include seminar, meals, or reception)—FREE
*Students must register using their law school email address.

Limited onsite registration available—for a $30 fee in addition to seminar cost.

As in previous years, this promises to be an educational and entertaining event. The cost of the seminar includes a light breakfast, lunch, and a complimentary cocktail reception. The annual IT Law Section and council meetings will be held during the luncheon and will include election of the 2019–2020 council members and section officers.

8:00–9:00 a.m. Light Breakfast | 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. Seminar (Annual Meeting during lunch) | 4:00 p.m. Networking Reception

Moderator: Robert Rothman, Privacy Associates International LLC

9:00 a.m. Welcome & Introductions

9:15 a.m. How to Have a Strong CIO-Attorney Relationship
Mark Chuey and Jeff Liedel, General Motors; Phil Bertolini, Deputy County Executive and CIO, Oakland County; Joellen Shortley, Corporation Counsel, Oakland County

10:05 a.m. Liability Limits & Indemnities—Practical & Tactical Perspectives
Mark Malven, Dykema; George Kimball, Wiggin and Dana LLP

10:55 a.m. Networking Break

11:10 a.m. Big Data Analytics
Jeremiah Posedel, Drinker Biddle

Noon Lunch & Annual Section Meeting

1:15 p.m. Negotiating Security Addenda
Kimberley Crouch, General Motors; Brian Balow, Dykema

2:05 p.m. Cyber Security Governance & Best Practices
Waleed Haddad, Security Compliance Director, Access Interactive

2:55 p.m. Networking Break

3:10 p.m. You’ve Got Ransomware or Other Cyber Security Nightmares, Panel Discussion
Thomas Doty, Director, NuStrategies LLC; Furney Brown, Senior Manager, Plante Moran; Bill Jobes, Jobes Technology Solutions LLC; Waleed Haddad, Access Interactive

4:00 p.m. Closing Remarks, Prize Drawing, & Networking Reception

Event Sponsors
Privacy Associates International LLC

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Great Opportunity to Increase Your Visibility and Attract New Clients

CallcenterThe SBM Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) currently receives more than 500 calls each week from people looking for lawyers. Many of these are unable to find a match because there are not enough attorneys in some geographic areas or in some practice areas.

The SBM has revised and improved LRS. The resulting system produces far better matches for attorneys and consumers alike. We're ready to begin a significant marketing initiative to consumers and need to “stock the shelves” by adding more SBM members as LRS panel members.

Better matching technology means a higher likelihood of securing paying clients than ever before. The new online platform also automates tracking and reporting.

In addition to traditional cases, LRS has added Modest Means panels for family law and bankruptcy, and opportunities for attorneys to market their Limited Scope practice.

Learn more about LRS.
Learn more about joining one or more of our LRS panels.
Learn more about Limited Scope practice.

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SBM Announces 2019 Election Results

SBM Board of Commissioners

Three attorneys—E. Thomas McCarthy Jr., Thomas G. Sinas, and Erika L. Butler—won contested seats in this year’s Board of Commissioners elections. All will serve three-year terms expiring at the close of the 2022 Annual Meeting.

McCarthy and Sinas were elected to serve District C, representing Oceana, Muskegon, Ottawa, Newaygo, Kent, Osceola, Mecosta, Clare, Isabella, and Gladwin counties. McCarthy, a shareholder at Smith Haughey Rice & Roegge, has been an elected member of the Board of Commissioners since 2013. Sinas practiced in Minnesota until 2013, when he returned to Michigan and opened the Grand Rapids office of the Sinas Dramis law firm.

Butler was elected to serve District H, representing Monroe, Lenawee, and Wayne counties. She has been a Michigan lawyer for almost 20 years with a solo practice representing nonprofits, small businesses, and individual clients throughout Metropolitan Detroit and beyond.

Four attorneys won unopposed races in the State Bar Board of Commissioners:

Suzanne C. Larsen, a partner with Kendricks Bordeau Keefe Seavoy & Larsen PC in Marquette, was elected to serve District A, representing the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula.

Danielle M. Anderson of Miller Canfield Paddock & Stone PLC’s Kalamazoo office, was re-elected to serve District F, representing Allegan, Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Hillsdale, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, and Van Buren counties.

Sarah E. Kuchon and James W. Low were elected to serve District I, representing Oakland County. Kuchon is a partner with Hohauser Kuchon in Troy. Low is with The Dollar Law Firm PLLC in Southfield.

Judicial Tenure Commission

Thomas J. Ryan of Sylvan Lake won a contested election for a three-year term on the Judicial Tenure Commission that will commence January 1, 2020 and expire on December 31, 2022.

Representative Assembly and Young Lawyers Executive Council Results

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Lunch & Learn—Tips & Tricks for Administrative Hearings & Appeals

GavelDate: Tuesday, August 20, 2019
Time: 11:30 a.m.–2:00 p.m.
Location: University Club of MSU, Lower Level Ballroom, 3435 Forest Rd, Lansing
Register: online or by mail form

To help ensure an accurate lunch count, registrations must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. on August 13.

Cost: $20 for Admin Law and Young Lawyers Section members; $25 for non-section members; $15 for law students

Learn valuable insights from attorney Bret Totoraitis of Consumers Energy Company and William Fahey of Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes PLC about how to successfully present cases before Michigan administrative tribunals as well as best practices for being successful in administrative appeals.

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Connecting with Your Clients

OnbalanceDr. Noelle Nelson gives listeners simple techniques for connecting with all types of clients and teach lawyers how to communicate, even if they disagree with their client.

Disconnects in lawyer/client communication often lead to unhappy clients or even the loss of their business. But the State Bar of Michigan: On Balance Podcast has good news—better relationships with clients can be achieved! Hosts Tish Vincent and JoAnn Hathaway talk to Dr. Noelle Nelson about her book, “Connecting with Your Client: Success Through Improved Client Communication Techniques.” Dr. Nelson offers simple techniques for connecting with clients of all personalities and temperaments and teaches lawyers how to be an ally, even if they disagree with their client. Later, they also discuss communication within law firms and offer strategies for creating supportive, respectful workplaces.

Dr. Noelle Nelson is a respected psychologist, speaker, author, and trial consultant who provides trial/jury strategy, witness preparation and focus groups to attorneys.

Listen to the podcast

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