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District 3 election continues until Nov. 19

Voters in the State Bar's District 3 have until Nov. 19 to cast their ballots among four candidates for an open seat on the board of governors. The election is being held to replace Marie Weiner, who recently joined the San Mateo County Superior Court. District 3 includes Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Santa Clara counties.

Any active member of the bar who maintains his or her principal business office in one of those counties is eligible to run and vote. The term expires in 2004.

The candidates are Stephen Barnett, professor at Boalt Hall, Michael Lynn Gabriel of San Mateo, Michael Schmier of Emeryville and Valerie Kral of Redwood City. The latter three are sole practitioners.

Descriptions of the candidates' positions on a variety of issues were featured in the October Bar Journal.

Santa Clara County Counsel Ann Ravel has filled Weiner's position on an interim basis, as she did when another former board member from District 3, Erica Yew, also was named to the bench.

Complete details about the election , including the candidates' biographical statements, are online. Questions may be directed to Biljanna Sivanov, 415-538-2274.

MCLE deadline looms for Group 2 (last names H-M)

Members of MCLE compliance group 2 (last names H-M) who are not part of an exempt group must complete 25 hours of continuing legal education by the compliance deadline of Feb. 1, 2003.

Attorneys who comply after that date may be subject to a $75 fine.

Information about MCLE compliance rules is available at online.

Fee arb training slated in Solano County

Recent developments in fee arbitration will be discussed at a training program in Solano County next month sponsored by the State Bar's Committee on Mandatory Fee Arbitration .

The free training, scheduled for Nov. 14 from 5-8:30 p.m. offers 2.75 hours of MCLE credit, including one hour of legal ethics.

Open to fee arbitrators from Solano County and all State Bar fee arbitrators, the session will be held in the jury assembly room at the Hall of Justice, 600 Union Ave., Fairfield. Among the topics for discussion are how to write an enforceable award, conflicts of interest, disclosure requirements and how to control the proceeding.

To register, contact Julie Hilt, 707/422-5087. For more information, call Jill Sperber, director of the State Bar Office of Mandatory Fee Arbitra-tion, at 415/538-2023.

More consumer pamphlets available in Spanish

Several of the State Bar's consumer pamphlets have been translated into Spanish as part of the bar's public service efforts. "Kids and the Law: An A-Z Guide for Parents,"; a popular booklet which provides basic information about children and the laws that affect them, is available online only in both English and Spanish.

Available in Spanish in the print version only are "What Should I Know About Hate Crimes?" and "Do I Need Estate Planning?" Both pamphlets also are available online in English.

The bar offers 26 consumer education pamphlets in addition to three lengthier guides, "When You Become 18," a "Guide to Legal Literacy" and "Kids and the Law." Print copies of "When You Become 18" are still available.

All of the bar's pamphlets have been written in an easy-to-understand user-friendly format designed to assist the average consumer. One pamphlet is available at no cost; between two and 99 copies are 50 cents each; and 100 copies of the same pamphlet cost $40.

The order form is available online

State Bar dues bills will be mailed Nov. 15

Dues bills will be mailed Nov. 15 to all active and inactive California attorneys. The dues are authorized by the state legislature and set by the State Bar Board of Governors.

Dues for active lawyers are $390 for the coming year, and dues for inactive members remain at $50.

Again this year, attorneys will have the option of contributing to the Foundation of the State Bar, which suggests donations of $50, and the new Conference of Delegates of California Bar Associations, which is seeking contributions of $10. New this year is a request for donations to the California Historical Society, which is asking for $25 from the state's lawyers.

Active attorneys can deduct $5 from the dues bill for the bar's lobbying efforts and $5 for the elimination of bias fund.

Attorneys who earn less than $25,000 from the practice of law can qualify for a 50 percent reduction, bringing their dues to $195. Those earning between $25,000 and $40,000 are eligible for a 25 percent cut, for a dues bill of $292.50.

The deadline for payment is Feb. 1. Failure to pay will result in a 10 percent penalty March 15, and an additional 15 percent penalty will be imposed May 15.

Information about the fee bill is available at 415-538-2360.

Discipline and admissions hearings scheduled

The State Bar will hold its annual hearings on the attorney discipline and admissions process and on attorney competence next month in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The hearings provide an opportunity for lawyers and members of the public to make proposals or offer comments about developments in the three areas.

The Los Angeles hearing will be held Dec. 10 at 10 a.m. at the bar's offices at 1149 South Hill St. The San Francisco hearing is scheduled for Dec. 12 at 10 a.m. at bar headquarters, 180 Howard St.

Individuals wishing to speak and/or present written materials should contact Lauren McCurdy at 415-538-2107 by Dec. 6.

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