California Bar Journal
spacer.gif (810 bytes)
Legislative alert...
spacer.gif (810 bytes)

Under State Bar procedures, members of the bar may file a specific objection to challenge the accuracy of any of the determinations by the board of governors that a legislative position is chargeable to the annual membership fee under Keller v. State Bar (1990) 496 U.S. 1. A challenge by a member to any of the legislative positions listed below must be made individually and in writing. The written challenge must include the challenger’s name, address, telephone number and bar membership number and should identify the challenged legislative position. A challenger must sign the challenge, postmarked on or before Nov.16, 2000,  which is the 45th day following the publication date of this issue of the California Bar Journal, or delivered in person to the State Bar’s San Francisco office by 5 p.m. on or before Nov.16, 2000, directed to Judy Johnson, executive director, State Bar of California,180 Howard St., San Francisco 94105-1639. Challengers are still required to submit payment of the 2000 membership fee less only the $5 lobbying deduction. Failure to timely submit a challenge shall constitute a waiver of any right to object to a particular legislative position within this notice.

Objections properly filed within the deadline will be considered by the board of governors at its next regularly scheduled meeting following the deadline or as soon thereafter as the matter may be considered. The board shall decide whether to give a pro rata refund to the challenger or to submit the dispute for expeditious arbitration before an impartial arbitrator according to procedures described in the January 2000 California Bar Journal. If the dispute is submitted to arbitration, the arbitration process will determine whether the challenged positions are within the scope of permissible activities for which mandatory fees may be used under applicable constitutional law. Upon receipt of a properly submitted and timely challenge, the State Bar will place the disputed amount of the challenger’s fee in an interest-bearing escrow account. 

The list of legislative positions approved and determined chargeable on Aug. 26, 2000, by the board of governors for the year 2000 is as follows:

1. Supports AB 1858 (Romero) relating to immigration consultants, as amended, to require immigration consultants to include in all advertising a statement that the consultant is not an attorney, to require disclosure by attorneys in all advertisements seeking professional employment relating to immigration or naturalization that they are active members of the State Bar, licensed to practice law in this state and to delete the provision which would have required attorneys to place State Bar numbers on all advertisements, letterhead, and business cards.

2. Supports AB 2069 (Corbett) that requires the State Bar to conduct a study concerning the legal and professional responsibility issues that may arise as a result of the relationship between an attorney and an insurer when the attorney is retained by the insurer to represent an insured, and subsequently, the attorney is retained to represent a party against another party insured by the insurer.

3. Removes opposition to AB 2107 (Scott) relating to elder abuse, since it was amended to delete provisions that would have prohibited a lawyer from selling an annuity, as defined, to an elder with whom the lawyer has or has had an attorney-client relationship, and to delete a provision that would have prohibited a lawyer from entering into a compensated referral arrangement with a financial services agent that put the bill at odds with the Rules of Professional Conduct, 3-300 and 3-310.

4. Supports SB 1782 (Morrow) insofar as it requests the Supreme Court to appoint a task force to study and make recommendations whether, and under what circumstances, attorneys who are licensed to practice law in other states and who have not passed the California bar examination may be permitted to practice law in California.