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Public comment sought on Frye ruling

The State Bar launched a study last month of nonprofit legal practice in California, responding to the Supreme Court’s directive in Frye v. Tenderloin Housing Clinic Inc. Following the study, the bar is to report back as to whether regulation is warranted for nonprofit legal service providers such as legal aid societies, public interest organizations and membership organizations like unions. Survey questionnaires are posted on the Public Comment page of the State Bar’s Web site, calbar.ca.gov. The surveys also will be distributed to interested parties and must be returned by Jan. 31. Public hearings on the issue are to be scheduled next month.

In California, law corporations must register with the State Bar if they represent clients. In Frye, the Tenderloin Housing Clinic (THC), a nonprofit pubic interest organization representing San Francisco tenants, was found by the lower court to be representing clients without registering as a nonprofit law corporation. The Supreme Court reversed and found that there was constitutional protection for nonprofit entities like THC to do what it was doing. The Supreme Court asked the State Bar, however, to study nonprofit legal practice in California and determine if greater regulation in this area was necessary to protect California legal consumers.

Any interested party is invited to comment. Comments may also be provided to Robert A. Hawley, Deputy Executive Director, State Bar of California, 180 Howard St., San Francisco, CA 94105; robert.hawley@calbar.ca.gov; 415-538-2277; 415-538-2305 (fax).

Public Comment - Frye v. Tenderloin Housing Clinic Inc.

Two fee arb trainings set

A refresher course for volunteer attorneys who serve local and State Bar mandatory fee arbitration programs as well as instruction for new volunteers will be offered at two training sessions in Palm Desert and Woodland Hills. Both sessions are free and offer 2.75 hours of MCLE credit, including one hour of ethics and 1.75 hours of general credit. 

The Palm Desert training will be held Nov. 14, from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., at the University of California at Riverside’s Palm Desert campus, 75-080 Frank Sinatra Dr., Room A114. To reserve a space, contact Kathleen Romero at 760-360-1734 or Lkathleenromero@aol.com.

The San Fernando Valley Bar Association is recruiting fee arbitrators to join its revived program and will offer training Jan. 17, from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., Pierce College, Performing Arts Building Auditorium, 6201 Winnetka Ave., Woodland Hills. To reserve a space, contact Liz Post at 818-227-0490 or epost@sfvba.org.

For additional information (not RSVP), contact Jill Sperber at 415-538-2023.

Tell the bar if you move

Lawyers who change their address are required by the Business & Professions Code to notify the bar within 30 days. Because the deadline for payment of the annual membership fee will be strictly enforced this year (see page 1), it is important that members keep their address up-to-date in order to receive both the fee statement and mailings about the upcoming changes.

Complete information about changing an address can be found on the bar’s Web site, calbar.ca.gov. Click on Member Services in the left-hand menu and log on to My State Bar Profile. If you are a first-time user and do not have an access code or have questions, call the Member Services Center at 1-888-800-3400.

Free self-study MCLE

The Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP) is offering a free self-study package approved for one hour of MCLE credit in the prevention of substance abuse. Send an e-mail to LAP@calbar.ca.gov.

Apply for a bar committee

The application for a 2007-08 appointment to a State Bar committee is available at the bar’s Web site, calbar.ca.gov. Select the left-menu links to Attorney Resources and to Committees and Commissions.

For these appointments, the bar is recruiting applicants for 10 standing committees, 16 section executive committees and 13 special committees, boards and commissions.

Attorneys interested in volunteering to serve on a State Bar committee can also request an application from the Appointments Office, State Bar of California, 180 Howard St., San Francisco, CA 94105-1639; 415-538-2318; 415-538-2255 (fax).

Appointment Procedures

Opt out of list sales

Attorneys who wish to remove their names from lists the State Bar provides to qualified outside entities may do so by logging on to Member Login at calbar.ca.gov. After registering with My State Bar Profile, follow the instructions.

Members also may e-mail their request to msc@calbar.ca.gov.

Include your bar number.

Sign up for e-briefs

The State Bar offers “e-briefs,” a short summary of recent news developments or announcements of interest to lawyers. The electronic mailings are provided on a timely basis, usually twice a month. To subscribe, go to “e-briefs” listed under “News” on the home page of the State Bar’s Web site, calbar.ca.gov.

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