SMALL CLAIMS REPORT CARD
The legal consumer group HALT ('dedicated to helping all Americans
handle their legal affairs simply, affordably and equitably')
has taken on the nation's small claims court system as a multiyear
reform project. It has now released a national report card, grading
Oregon's small claims courts a C-minus. In the survey, Oregon
ties in rank for ninth out of 47 jurisdictions with small claims
courts. Half of a state's grade came from the amount and type
of relief offered, and half came from the ease of access to the
court. A copy of the report card is available at www.halt.org.
WOMEN OF WISDOM
Women of Wisdom, a new virtual network of women attorneys and
women physicians, will begin offering teleconferences 'dedicated
to empowering women attorney and physicans,' hoping to provide
CLE credits and psychological strategic planning that can lead
to a satisfying career and a well-balanced life.
For information on the 90-minute teleconferences scheduled to
begin in May 2002, visit:
NOT OPEN FOR BUSINESS
Attorneys are not inclined to become the boss, at least not of
their own law firms. In a recent nationwide poll conducted by
The Affiliates, 84 percent of lawyers surveyed said that even
if they had the funds, they would not start their own practice.
In 1997, a similar poll found that 78 percent would not open their
own law office. Lawyers may be hesitant to leave the security
of their current positions, the survey concluded.
INTERACTIVE WRITING FOR BUSY LAWYERS
The ABA has launched a series of online interactive 'immediate-feedback'
courses on advanced writing for lawyers. The goal is to bring
the classroom to busy lawyers at their convenience.
'Advanced Writing with Gary Kinder' deviates from the
standard text-based of 'talking head' format used in
most online learning programs. It's a series of one-hour courses
that uses exercises culled from legal opinions, briefs, memoranda,
letters and contracts to improve writing skills and allow lawyers
to take courses at their own convenience and pace.
The first course is Power Editing: Part I, available at www.abanet.org/cle/ecle/
i02awli.html. The cost for each course is $50 for individual lawyers
(less for groups).
SURVEY: LAWYERS 'NECESSARY BUT OVERPAID, DISHONEST'
Apparently the image of the profession still needs
some work. According to a nationwide survey commisioned by Columbia
Law School on lawyers and the legal profession, almost two-thirds
of Americans think lawyers are overpaid, about half think attorneys
do more harm than good, and four in 10 think lawyers are dishonest.
On the hand, the public holds police officers in high esteem,
which is perhaps no surprise in these anti-terrorist times. Politicians
fare far worse thatn lawyers or cops. A press release and the
survey findings themselves are detailed at: http://www.law.columbia.edu/news/
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GOING THE DISTANCE: HAPPENING SOON!
The Oregon Supreme Court Library, which became
the State of Oregon Law Library by act of the 2001 legislature,
has a new look. The venerable library's interior was recently
renovated to allow use of new technologies, while preserving
the historical ambience of the 1914 Supreme Court Building.
To celebrate these transitions, Oregon lawyers are invited
to an open house at the library May 22, 1 to 5 p.m. Chief
Justice Wallace P. Carson Jr. will dedicate the newly enhanced
library at 3 p.m. Books withdrawn from the library collection
will be available for sale.