Environmental law institute set for October

In one of the nation's largest meetings of land use and natural resources professionals, environmental leaders from across the country will gather this fall in Yosemite for the State Bar's annual Environmental Law Institute. The conference, sponsored by the Environmental Law Section, will be held from Oct. 16-19 at the Tenaya Lodge in Fish Camp.

Panel discussions will focus on such topics as land sprawl, contaminated property, toxic torts and water supply and pollution law.

Registration is limited to 425 persons. For further information or to obtain a brochure, contact Jayna Blackwell, 415/561-8885.

E-mail address for Court of Appeal

Members of the public can now contact four state appellate courts by either e-mail or web site.

The Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District has established an e-mail address: first_district@jud.ca.gov. The address is offered as a means of transmitting messages only and not as an alternative to accepted filing procedures.

The Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District, Division One (San Diego), has created a web site which includes recent published opinions, the current month's oral argument calendar, local rules, internal operating practices, and court forms. The web site is www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courtsofappeal/4thDistrictDiv1/

The Third District (Sacramento) also has a web site: www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courtsofappeal/3rdDistrict/index.htm.

The California Supreme Court's web site is www.courtinfo.ca.gov/supremecourt/.

'Kids and the Law' brochure available

Kids and the Law, a brochure designed to give parents the answers to legal questions concerning their children, is available from the State Bar.

Written by University of San Francisco law professor Thomas Nazario, the 79-page booklet offers relevant, easy-to-understand information on a wide range of laws and legal issues involving children.

It includes nuts-and-bolts information on current and changing laws, practical examples, a glossary and cross-references to appropriate statutes and code sections.

The brochure is available by calling 1-800/445-4LAW.

California Law Advocates has produced a related brochure targeted for children who reach the age of 18. Now in its fourth printing, "When You Become 18" is considered a survival guide for teenagers.

Available through many school districts, it includes chapters on voting, jury duty, marriage, divorce, child support, date rape, establishing credit and other topics 18-year-olds should know about.

A Spanish version of the booklet will be available in the fall.

For information about "When You Become 18," contact Margaret Hampton at 818/346-9538 or a CLA chapter in your area.

Experienced lawyers needed as mentors

The Solo and Small Firm Practice Section is seeking experienced attorneys to act as mentors for new and/or inexperienced lawyers in specific fields of law. The mentor is asked to provide a free, half hour consultation to the requesting attorney.

Interested attorneys should send a resume and areas of specialty to the Solo and Small Firm Practice Section at 555 Franklin St., San Francisco 94102; 415/561-8350.

A mentor directory will be published later this year.

New accreditation for certifying legal specialists

In light of recent Supreme Court approval, the State Bar has begun a new accreditation program aimed at bolstering consumer protection by evaluating the organizations that certify legal specialists in California.

Beginning June 1, attorneys who advertise as certified specialists must have certification from the bar's Board of Legal Specialization or from an organization accredited by the bar.

Judicial Fellows applicants sought

Individuals interested in the administration of justice are invited to apply for the 1998-99 Judicial Fellows Program. Established in 1973 and patterned after the White House and Congressional Fellowships, the program seeks outstanding individuals from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds who show promise of making a contribution to the judiciary.

Up to four fellows will be chosen to spend a year, beginning in August or September 1998, in Washington, D.C., at the U.S. Supreme Court, the Federal Judicial Center, the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, or the United States Sentencing Commission.

Candidates must be familiar with the federal judicial system, have at least one postgraduate degree and two or more years of successful professional experience.

Further information is available from Vanessa M. Yarnall, Administrative Director, Judicial Fellows Program, Supreme Court of the United States, Room 5, Washington, D.C., 20543; 202/479-3415. The application deadline is Nov. 17.

Bar endorses two insurance programs

Two insurance programs, one covering workers' compensation and the other a business office package, have been endorsed by the State Bar for its members. Developed by the bar's Committee on Group Insurance Programs, the new member benefits offer minimum premiums lower than those generally available.

Any law firm seeking workers' compensation insurance for the first time, including sole practitioners, is eligible to participate.

Information about the workers' compensation program is available from the State Compensation Insurance Fund at 1-800/533-6868.

Information about the business office package is available from Acordia Lloyd at 1-800/648-1600. The business office package will be underwritten by The Hartford.

The bar also endorses programs in health, life, disability and professional liability insurance. For more information, call 415/561-8807.