Two Great ISBA Member Benefits Sponsored by
A Value of $1,344, Included with Membership

Learn about the groundbreaking case that has changed the labor and employment landscape and what it means for your clients! In an en banc opinion, the 7th Circuit has now added sexual orientation as a protected class under Title VII, making this a ruling that may or may not create a sea of change in anti-discrimination laws and the law, in general, as it relates to sexual orientation. Join us via the Internet on September 13, 2017 to get the information you need to advise your clients on this timely topic, including: how the legal landscape of discrimination claims may be affected; who will be effected by this ruling; Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College and the history behind the ruling; and how the rest of the circuit courts across the country view this ruling.

The seminar is presented by the ISBA Labor & Employment Law Section and qualifies for 2.0 hours MCLE credit.

Click here for more information and to register.


Hon. Craig H. DeArmond, Chief Judge of the Fifth Judicial Circuit, has been assigned as an Appellate Court Justice in the Fourth Judicial District. The assignment  takes effect on September 1, 2017, and will continue until further order of the Court.

"I am pleased to announce the assignment of Judge Craig DeArmond to the Fourth District Appellate Court. Judge DeArmond has many years of experience that have amply prepared him for the work of the appellate court," Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita B. Garman said. "His background includes eight years as Vermilion County State’s Attorney and several years in private practice representing criminal defendants and clients in civil matters. He was elected in 2015 to serve as Chief Judge in the Fifth Judicial Circuit. Judge DeArmond has served on the Supreme Court Committee on Education for several years and is a frequent presenter at judicial education programs. He will make a fine addition to the appellate court."


Democrats and Republicans. Cubs fans and Cards (or White Sox) fans. Oxford comma devotees and detractors. Is that how it is in your workplace?

Well, score one for the Oxford comma contingent. As Rex Gradeless put it in the May issue of The Public Servant, newsletter of the ISBA Government Lawyers Committee, a "recent federal appellate court decision may put the cost of a single missing comma at $10 million." Gradeless reminds us that the Oxford comma is "placed immediately before the coordinating conjunction (usually 'and' or 'or') in a series of three or more terms. For example, a list of three Illinois counties might be punctuated either as 'Hardin, Pope, and Calhoun' (with the Oxford comma), or as 'Hardin, Pope and Calhoun' (without the Oxford comma)."

In the case in question, Maine truck farmers argued that they were included in a statute requiring overtime payments, while the Oakhurst Dairy argued they were excluded. The overtime statute excluded employees involved in "[t]he canning, processing, preserving, freezing, drying, marketing, storing, packing for shipment or distribution of [food products]."



Asked and Answered 

By John W. Olmstead, MBA, Ph.D, CMC

Q. Our law firm is a 16-attorney intellectual property firm in Tampa, Florida. We have 10 partners and six associates. I am a member of our three-member executive committee and I have been given charge of looking into the pros and cons of having a firm retreat with all of our partners and associates. We have not had a retreat before and we would like your thoughts concerning the benefits that a small firm can receive from a retreat.


On July 11, 2017, the Illinois State Bar Association filed a complaint in the Circuit Court of Cook County to enjoin the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (“IDFPR”) from prosecuting Illinois licensed lawyers for submitting information about property values in advocating on behalf of clients in real estate tax assessment proceedings.

In April, the IDFPR initiated administrative prosecutions of two Illinois licensed lawyers, alleging that in separate proceedings each had engaged in the unlicensed practice of real estate appraisal. The lawyers had filed briefs with the Property Tax Appeals Board and the DuPage County Board of Review, respectively, advocating a reduction in the assessed value of their clients’ property. Neither lawyer purported to submit an appraisal or act as an appraiser. The IDFPR’s administrative complaints sought “cease and desist” orders against the two lawyers as well as civil penalties not to exceed $25,000 per violation. 

"Arguments based on property valuation are common in many legal fields and have long been typical of real estate tax assessment practice," said Thomas McNulty of Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP, who along with Steven Pflaum is representing the ISBA in this case. "The ISBA believes that making such arguments on behalf of clients clearly constitutes the practice of law, does not entail the submission of an appraisal, and is well beyond the authority of the IDFPR to regulate."


Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides free legal services to senior and low-income individuals in central and souther Illinois, seeks two staff attorneys at its Northern Regional office.

Senior staff attorney responsibilities will include representation of senior citizens in civil cases and transactional matters involving critical legal needs in 12-county service area. Position includes travel to senior centers on a regular basis and participation in community legal education and outreach.

Staff attorney responsibilities will include representation of low-income in routine and complex family law litigation, particularly for victims of domestic violence and representation of low-income clients in other litigation involving critical legal needs.

To qualify, applicants must be admitted to the Illinois Bar and demonstrate commitment to the representation of low-income individuals. Prior legal services or clinical work experience strongly preferred. 

Salary is approximately $45,000 with license, depending on experience, and includes excellent benefits, including medical, dental, and vision.

Interested applicants should send a resume, cover letter, and writing sample to:

Lauren J. Pashayan
Managing Attorney
Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, Inc.
3085 Stevenson Drive St. 202
Springfield, IL 62703
(217) 529-8400
lpashayan@lollaf.org


Complimentary Training and CLE Credit for ISBA Members Only

Thursday, August 3, 2017: Introduction to Legal Research on Fastcase

Take advantage of this opportunity to familiarize yourself with Fastcase (including the all new Fastcase 7!) through this introductory legal research training seminar. With unlimited free access to a comprehensive 50-state and federal case law database, this is one benefit ISBA members should learn how to use!

Thursday, August 10, 2017: Advanced Tips for Enhanced Legal Research on Fastcase

Take your Fastcase knowledge and knowhow to a new level with this advanced legal research training seminar (which also includes a look at the advanced features of Fastcase 7). Get the most out of this member benefit learning how to use the advanced features of this free online legal research tool.

Thursday, August 17, 2017: Fastcase Boolean (Keyword) Search for Lawyers

Join us for a brief overview that discusses how using the right keyword throughout your Fastcase search can produce better search results, as well as how to use the keyword search in Fastcase 7! The program is designed for attorneys who are already familiar with the basics of Fastcase, but are new to Boolean (keyword) searches and want to learn how to be more efficient using Boolean logic on any legal search engine.



We recently launched our new member benefit, Practice HQ. Organized by the lifecycle of a law practice, this one-stop microsite houses together high-quality practice information in one place. 

Starting a new law firm can be one of the most exciting endeavors you will ever undertake, but it can also be scary as you navigate the process and face the unknown. After all, you must take into consideration everything from software to practice management to client services. For members at the beginning of a firm's lifecycle, Practice HQ offers valuable tools on how to get your firm up and running.



The Illinois State Bar Association’s Lawyer Finder Service provides referrals to local lawyers Mondays through Fridays.  The Service makes referrals in a number of areas of law.  For the month of June 2017, there were a total of 1,015 calls.  ISBA helped people in need of legal services find lawyers in 33 areas of law. 

Here are the results for June 2017:



Our new member benefit, Practice HQ, is now live! In partnership with Affinity Consulting, we've developed this "one-stop microsite" for practice management and technology information. This wealth of resources was designed to help you practice smarter by housing high-quality practice information in one place. Within Practice HQ you'll find: