News & Information of Interest to WSBA Members
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Pre-Suspension Notices Mailed. If you have not completed all mandatory portions of your license renewal, including MCLE requirements and certification, trust account declaration, and disclosing professional liability insurance or financial responsibility, if applicable, you are delinquent and your license is at risk of administrative suspension. You may complete licensing requirements either online at www.licensing.wsba.org or by using the License Renewal form. To learn more, visit www.wsba.org/licensing.
Future Structure of the WSBA Study: Next meeting April 23
In light of recent constitutional challenges to integrated bar associations across the country, the Washington Supreme Court has asked the WSBA Board of Governors to consider three questions and make a recommendation back:
- Does current federal litigation regarding the constitutionality of integrated bars require the WSBA to make a structure change?
- Even if the WSBA does not have to alter its structure now, what is the contingency plan if the U.S. Supreme Court does issue a ruling that forces a change?
- Litigation aside, what is the ideal structure for the WSBA to accomplish its mission?
The Board of Governors named the study process ETHOS—Examining the Historical Organization and Structure of the Bar. There will be eight full-day meetings between January and August 2022—open to the public via Zoom and in person at the WSBA offices—to gather information and build a common understanding of the issue, to explore other bar structures, and to form a recommendation. Throughout each phase, the Board has committed to gathering wide stakeholder feedback. In addition to specific outreach opportunities and comment periods during meetings, you can send feedback to email@example.com.
ONLINE > For more information—such as the ETHOS charter, meeting dates, and legal background—visit www.wsba.org/about-wsba/who-we-are/board-of-governors/bar-structure-study.
WSBA Office Space for Sublease
The state Bar is offering space for sublease at its headquarters in the Puget Sound Plaza Building in the heart of downtown Seattle. There is a mix of size and space configurations available with competitive terms. All interested parties should go through broker Adam Chapman at 206-521-2672 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The WSBA’s current lease runs through December 2026, and space has become available as many positions have transitioned to remote flexibility. The WSBA’s Long Range Strategic Planning Council is currently investigating the future of the WSBA’s office location beyond 2026.
Engage with WSBA Leaders
The Member Engagement Council, which seeks member input and involvement in decision-making processes, wants to hear from you! The first agenda item of each meeting (the first Thursday of each month from 1-3 p.m. via Zoom) is reserved for member comments. All topics are welcome. Visit the events calendar at www.wsba.org for more information.
The annual WSBA volunteer application and selection cycle opens March 14. The WSBA, the profession, and the legal community greatly benefit from members like you! Join our dedicated, skilled, and knowledgeable volunteer community! More information at: www.wsba.org/connect-serve/volunteer-opportunities.
Comment by April 30: Proposed Amendments to Civil Rules
The Washington Supreme Court has published for comment—with a deadline of April 30—several proposed changes to the Washington Civil Rules, including in the areas of case schedules, pretrial procedures, and discovery. The WSBA Board of Governors submitted these amendments to the court after two task forces and a work group developed recommendations to reduce the cost of civil litigation in Washington courts. For more background information and directions to submit comments to the Court, visit www.wsba.org/Legal-Community/Committees-Boards-and-Other-Groups/Civil-Litigation-Rules.
The WSBA encourages members to actively monitor and provide feedback when the Washington Supreme Court is considering any amendments to its rules. Keep track of opportunities to comment at http://www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/rules-feedback, or visit the court’s website at www.courts.wa.gov/court_rules/?fa=court_rules.proposed.
WSBA Board Feedback
Send your feedback to email@example.com. Please note that all WSBA emails are subject to public records requests.
Receive Notice of Upcoming Board Meetings
Join the Board meeting notice subscription list to receive WSBA Board of Governors meeting notices straight to your inbox! To join, email firstname.lastname@example.org or complete the form at www.wsba.org/about-wsba/who-we-are/board-of-governors.
Volunteer with the Lawyer Discipline System
Learn more about volunteering as an adjunct disciplinary counsel (ADC). ADCs assist as needed in carrying out the functions of the lawyer discipline system pursuant to Rule 2.9 of the Rules for Enforcement of Lawyer Conduct. An ADC must have been an active lawyer or judicial member of the WSBA for at least seven years at the time of appointment. Appointment is for a five-year term. Visit www.wsba.org/adc-panel or contact email@example.com to learn more.
Serve as WSBA President-Elect
Applications are due April 15. Candidates for president-elect will be interviewed and selected by the current Board of Governors. The term for president-elect begins September 2022. Application instructions will be posted at www.wsba.org/about-wsba/who-we-are/board-elections.
Congressional District Board of Governors Elections
If you reside in districts 2 or 10, please look for an electronic ballot to your email address on March 15. Visit www.wsba.org/about-wsba/who-we-are/board-elections to learn more. Congratulations to Congressional District 9 Governor-elect Kevin Fay, who ran unopposed.
Board of Governors At-Large Position
Applications are due April 15. Applicants will be interviewed by the WSBA Diversity Committee, which will select candidates to be included on the ballot who have experience and knowledge of the needs of those who have been historically underrepresented in WSBA governance. Application instructions will be posted at www.wsba.org/about-wsba/who-we-are/board-elections.
The WSBA is seeking interested lawyers as potential volunteer custodians of files and records to protect clients’ interests. Visit www.wsba.org/connect-serve/volunteer-opportunities/act-as-custodian, or contact Darlene Neumann: firstname.lastname@example.org, 206-733-5923, 800-945-9722, ext. 5923.
Volunteers Needed as Attorney Advocates
Unique opportunity to assist families or individuals in crisis by serving as a volunteer attorney advocate on the first-ever national advocacy hotline. Work from home or office at times you choose with hotline calls routed there. Resolution is typically achieved in under an hour. The nonprofit Help Now! Advocacy has assisted at no fee over 8,700 clients, mostly in Oregon, over the past 17 years. The organization is expanding its unique services to a national scope through the hotline. Contact LMKahn@HelpNowAdvocacy.org for more information.
Check Out DEI Resource Library
The DEI Resource Library is where WSBA members can learn more about diversity, equity, and inclusion concepts. There are compiled resource lists, books, and articles on the criminal legal system, identity and intersectionality, microaggressions/bias, and race. Visit www.wsba.org/about-wsba/equity-and-inclusion/dei-resource-library.
Practice Guides Available
Access two practice guides—”The Law Firm Guide to Document Retention” and “The Law Firm Guide to Disaster Planning and Recovery”—as well as other law firm guides and templates at www.wsba.org/guides.
Get help with your résumé, networking tips, and more—www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/member-support/wellness/consultation—or email email@example.com.
Free Consultations and Practice-Management Assistance
The WSBA offers free resources and education on practice management issues. For more information, visit www.wsba.org/pma. You can also schedule a free phone consultation with a WSBA practice-management advisor. Visit www.wsba.org/consult to get started.
The WSBA Lending Library is open to members for both in-person and online checkouts. We have made a few changes to be aware of. For more information, visit www.wsba.org/library or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Work at the WSBA
The Washington State Bar Association currently has the following openings: member wellness program clinical and outreach lead, CLE program coordinator, and equity and justice program coordinator. To find out more and apply, please visit www.wsba.org/career-center/work-at-the-wsba.
Special Discount on WSBA Career Center Through March 2022
Nonprofit, government, and small-firm employers can post job openings on the WSBA Career Center, https://jobs.wsba.org, at 50 percent of standard rates. This special discount, offered to prevent pricing from becoming a barrier as the legal community continues to navigate the effects of the COVID-19 crisis, has been extended through March 31, 2022. Contact Mike Credit at 727-494-6565 Ext 3332 or email@example.com for more information.
Members facing ethical dilemmas can talk with WSBA professional responsibility counsel for informal guidance. Learn more at www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/ethics/ethics-line or call the Ethics Line at 206-727-8284.
WSBA Advisory Opinions
WSBA advisory opinions are available online at www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/ethics/about-advisory-opinions. For assistance, call the Ethics Line at 206-727-8284.
WSBA MEMBER WELLNESS
Telehealth is Here!
The Member Wellness Program is now offering hi-def, HIPAA-protected video consultations using the telehealth portal Doxy.me. Visit www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/member-support/wellness and click “Book Your Initial Consultation” to schedule time with our licensed providers.
Judges Need Help Too
The Judicial Assistance and Services Program (JASP) provides confidential support for judges, or those who are concerned about a judge. Contact Susanna Kanther, Psy.D., at 415-572-3803. Visit www.wsba.org/for-legal-professionals/member-support/wellness/judicial-assistance-service-program.
The ‘Unbar’ Alcoholics Anonymous Group
The Washington Unbar Alcoholics Anonymous group for legal professionals has been meeting weekly for almost 30 years. The group meets Wednesdays, 12:15–1:30 p.m., and Sundays, 7–8 p.m. Currently, the group meets online via Zoom, and attorneys from all over Washington participate. For more information and Zoom credentials contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
WSBA COMMUNITY NETWORKING
Sign Up for Low Bono
The Moderate Means Program connects moderate income clients with family, housing, consumer law, and unemployment cases to legal professionals who offer reduced fees. Family law lawyers and LLLTs are especially needed due to a backlog of cases stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. Find out more at www.wsba.org/connect-serve/volunteer-opportunities/mmp or email email@example.com.
New Lawyers List Serve
This list serve is a discussion platform for new lawyers of the WSBA. To join, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ALPS Attorney Match
Attorney Match is a free online networking tool made available through the WSBA-endorsed professional liability partner, ALPS. Learn more at www.wsba.org/connect-serve/mentorship/find-your-mentor, or email email@example.com.
March 2022 Usury
The usury rate for March is 12.00%. The auction yield of the Feb. 7 auction of the six-month Treasury Bill was 0.59%. The interest rate required by RCW 4.56.110(3)(a) and 4.56.115 for March is 2.59%. The interest rate required by RCW 4.56.110(3)(b) and 4.56.111 for March is 5.25%.
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COVID-19 NEWS TO KNOW
Court Emergency Operations & Closures
The Washington Supreme Court has published a COVID-19 response page, which is a compilation of its emergency orders and court modifications: www.courts.wa.gov/newsinfo/index.cfm?fa=newsinfo.COVID19.
Law Office Reopening Guide
The WSBA Coronavirus Response Task Force compiled recommendations for how to safely reopen a law office. Find the guide “Reopening Safely: A Guide for Washington State Law Offices,” at www.wsba.org/docs/reopen.