February 2020 Archives

Welcome to the February 2020 Issue of Electronically in Touch

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We are pleased to submit the February 2020 issue of Electronically in Touch. This issue consists of informative articles regarding a brief guide and considerations to the LL.M Degree from U.S. Law Schools, technology in the courtroom as an opportunity for young lawyers to shine, member spotlight on Brandon Lee Wolff, and a brief piece summarizing the American Bar Association ("ABA") Young Lawyers Division's Assembly at the ABA Midyear Meeting in Austin, Texas on February 15, 2020. In addition, this issue also includes details on upcoming events by the New York State Bar Association.

Electronically In Touch is a member driven publication. We welcome submissions from members on any relevant topic, including practice tips, substantive legal articles, case updates, work/life balance, and information regarding upcoming meetings and events. Please submit inquiries and articles to Julie T. Houth at jhouth@gmail.com or Mansi Parikh at mansiparikh.1711@gmail.com.

By Irina Beschieriu

Whether one is a U.S. trained attorney or a foreign legal professional/lawyer, graduate education is one of the career options worth pondering, for various reasons. Be it that a higher degree of specialization is sought or a new career option is desired, U.S. trained attorneys do choose LL.M degrees as a quick way to get another legal diploma and ramp up their skills. For foreign legal professionals or lawyers, an LL.M degree is usually a pre-requisite for bar admission and/or the stepping stone for an international career in one of the legal hot spots around the world.

Internationally recognized, an LL.M is a secondary academic degree and it requires a first degree in law, irrespective of the legal system that it was obtained in (common law or civil law). The name of the degree itself comes from Latin - "Legum Magister" or "Magister Legum" - which translates to Master of the Laws. It is recognized as a degree specific to the common law countries, but has become wide-spread in Europe and other parts of the world as well. In some European countries, obtaining an LL.M degree is one of the requirements to practice law as an attorney. Typically, an LL.M is a one-year full time program, that can be attended on-campus or online, with a part-time program option that can be completed in two years.

Many law schools and universities around the world offer interesting and valuable LL.M programs, with U.S. remaining one of the traditionally preferred locations for foreign law graduates to obtain this graduate degree and, subsequently, admission to a U.S. bar.1 Ranging from General Studies, Human Rights Law or Comparative Law to specialized programs such as Banking, Finance, Taxation, Business Law, Dispute Resolution, Environmental Law, Criminal Law, IT Law, Insurance Law, Intellectual Property Law and Media, Entertainment, Arts and Fashion Law, to name a few, the options for a highly competitive and professional value-creating LLM program in the U.S. are many and worth considering.

The ensuing task would be to determine what considerations ought to be taken into account when searching for the most suitable and affordable U.S. LL.M program.

a. Choosing the suitable LLM program format.

While online education gains traction and adepts in the legal field as well, an on-campus LL.M program still has advantages worth considering.

For U.S. trained lawyers or J.D. graduates, an online program is a good option if taken while pursuing one's career in a different city than in the one where the law school is located. However, an on-campus LL.M program is an opportunity to study alongside a highly diverse and international group of people, many with considerable work experience and interesting backgrounds.

For foreign law graduates, the implications of choosing an on-campus versus online program are more nuanced. The first step towards pursuing the LL.M program is to check the admission requirements of the bar in the relevant state of admission. Not all U.S. states have the same admission conditions for foreign trained attorneys or law graduates. This includes differences in the minimum number of credits required to be obtained during the program.

New York state, for instance, does not accept an online LL.M program as meeting the educational standard for admission to the bar; is one is from a non-common law country or if the common law education does not meet all the required criteria.2 The exact admission conditions and "when & why" an LL.M degree is required to cure an educational deficiency for foreign trained attorneys can be found on the websites of the state bars associations or examiners' boards.3

If the end goal is to appear for the bar exam in a particular state, many law schools across the U.S. offer guidance in meeting the number of credit requirements, the pro bono hours or any such other requirements that enable the LL.M graduate to qualify for the bar exam. Getting the degree in one state and appearing for the bar in another state is also an option.

b. Money-talk: an LL.M program is an investment.

The cost of an LL.M is, more often than not, a determining factor in choosing the right program. While legal education in U.S. is not mainly known for its affordability, the right LL.M degree from the right law school may reposition a graduate on the labor market, herald new career advancement opportunities or move one into a superior salary bracket. For those interested in pursuing academic careers, some U.S. PhD programs either require or give preference to candidates that are their LL.M graduates. As with all other aspects of choosing the perfect program, proper research is fundamental in determining the best trajectory and personal career options after obtaining the degree.

In terms of actual figures, a one-year LL.M program's tuition may range anywhere from USD 30,000 (even lower for in-state applicants with a small number of law-schools) to more than USD 70,000, to which one needs to add the expenses (fees, books, housing, meals, transportation etc.) that vary greatly depending on location. Funding options other than personal funds are now available from a multitude of sources: fellowships, grants, scholarships, loans (for international students - private loans), to name a few.

Some law schools automatically consider all LL.M program applications for available scholarships, while others require a separate application for financial support. Other law schools do not provide any scholarship options for the LL.M program or limit such options to U.S. residents and citizens.

However, on the brighter side, the cost that is available on the website of the law school will not necessarily be, more often than not, the one that will end up on the LL.M program's candidate invoice. The reasons can be grouped into several categories: competition, the necessity that the schools comply with various indicators for diversity and inclusion, the set-up of the class and intake round applied for, as well as the flexibility in discussing actual amount of the scholarship offered to certain desirable candidates.

With the 2018 wave of immigration policy measures instituted by the current U.S. administration, U.S. law schools started to experience, along with the other superior education providers, significant decreases in the number of international students applying for admission.4 According to the American Bar Association, there are 203 institutions and programs that offer a first law degree in the U.S. 5 Most of these offer LL.M programs. With the decreasing number of international students, these law schools compete to attract LL.M candidates, including domestic ones.

For both domestic and international students, the ethnic, racial and heritage components, along with the region of the world or country of citizenship (for international students), might matter in the overall evaluation of the applicant's suitability for the program. In order to encourage diversity and equal access to education, in the "internationality" context of an LL.M program, where a candidate is from might also be a relevant element, in the overall evaluation.

Lastly, some law schools will increase the amount of scholarship initially offered if an LL.M applicant they truly want is considering competing offers. It is all about transparency in communication and the way the prospective LL.M candidate evaluates his/her options.

c. Application and timeline.

Even when a prospective LL.M candidate knows the type of program they wish to apply for, choosing the right one and the right law school is a project in itself. Narrowing down the list of possibilities by topic and location is a first step. As mentioned before, the cost of living, especially for an on-campus program, is an important component of the overall cost.

Various types of rankings of LL.M programs are available online. U.S. News & World Report publishes rankings of the educational institutions, including those of Best Grad Schools and LL.M programs by subject. With a minimum list of three to five options, it is easier to focus on checking the admission process for each of the law schools. Transcripts, letters of reference, resume and proof of proficiency in English are typical minimum requirements.

When applying for several programs, in order to avoid sending applications by mail or email, the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) offers an online platform where all documents can be uploaded and then electronically submitted to the law schools of choice. Most law schools prefer applications through LSAC.6

In terms of timeline, it is important to factor in that completing the research and the application package may take several months. Thus, identifying the intakes of new candidates for each program and law school is paramount. Typically, the LL.M programs start in August and end next May, along with the J.D. programs. However, some schools offer January intakes with graduation dates for December or next January.

In addition, for international students, obtaining a visa for studying in the U.S. is another topic to be considered. Schools offer support and provide the necessary documentation to apply for the right type of visa.

While choosing the best LL.M program means an investment of time, research and a good deal of consideration, it can be a rewarding educational experience and an important legal career move.

Apart from this, from my personal experience and of the numerous LL.M candidates and graduates I had the opportunity to interact with, an LL.M program is a humanly enriching and horizon broadening experience that greatly surpasses the notion of a mere "career move".

Irina Beschieriu is a technology transactions professional, with an LL.M in Dispute Resolution and Advocacy from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York, an M.A. in European Law and an LL.B from Romania. Passionate about the interplay between law, business and technology, she worked as a legal expert and project manager for big infrastructure projects before being contract manager for two global tech and outsourcing giants. She is specializing in tech contract management, data privacy and dispute resolution in the context of technology law and business.

1. One of the best sources for information on LLM programs in the US and around the world is LLM Guide - Master of Laws Programs Worldwide (https://llm-guide.com/).

2. The Foreign Legal Education requirements are published by the New York State Board of Law Examiners: https://www.nybarexam.org/Foreign/ForeignLegalEducation.htm

3. The National Conference of Bar Examiners publishes an annual Bar Admission Guide, available at: http://www.ncbex.org/publications/bar-admissions-guide/

4. https://money.cnn.com/2018/03/12/news/economy/international-student-visa-college/index.html

5. https://www.americanbar.org/groups/legal_education/resources/aba_approved_law_schools/

6. https://www.lsac.org/llm-other-law-program-applicants/application-process-llm-other-law-programs/steps-apply-llm-other

By Hamutal G. Lieberman, Esq.

As a young lawyer, one of the most important things you can do is to bring value to your firm or company. Finding ways to bring value can feel daunting to a new lawyer who has not yet had significant legal training like his/her colleagues. However, as the legal profession continues to modernize, a new opportunity for young lawyers to shine has presented itself in the form of technology in the courtroom.

The Rise of Technology in the Courtroom

In recent years, a trend has emerged to modernize New York's State and Federal courtrooms to include a variety of technology to be utilized by attorneys and judges. Efforts have also been made to renovate courtrooms, where possible, to become more ADA accessible by expanding the jury box to allow access for a wheelchair and providing devices that allow hearing and visually impaired jurors to serve their civic duty. In an era where litigation costs are at an all-time high, New York courts have prioritized these changes. The mission of NYSBA's Committee on Technology and the Legal Profession, chaired by Mark Berman, is to make recommendations to provide technological changes to enhance the legal profession as well as bridge the "justice gap" by making litigation more efficient thereby reducing the overall cost. Imagine that a firm must pay for three or four junior attorneys to bring 30 boxes of trial exhibits to and from court every day for two weeks. Now imagine the money that could be saved if the attorney just brought a USB drive instead. In this scenario, the labor cost for moving the exhibits as well as the cost of putting together paper trial exhibits have both been eliminated saving the client a tremendous amount of money.

New York's Commercial Division has been at the forefront of implementing these changes. In January 2018, the Commercial Division of Westchester County became the first civil court in New York to implement what was called "Integrated Courtroom Technology" (ICT). Shortly thereafter, in October 2018, the courtroom technology was debuted in the courtroom of New York County Commercial Division Justice Saliann Scarpulla located at 60 Centre Street. Since then, several other Commercial Division (and other civil and criminal) courtrooms have incorporated the same technology. Just naming a few, other technology-fitted courtrooms include Queens County Commercial Division Justice Marguerite Grays and Westchester County Commercial and Matrimonial Division Justice Gretchen Walsh. Each courtroom is slightly different so that the technology can be customized to fit the configuration of each courtroom to be the most efficient and convenient for the attorneys and jury utilizing the technology.

The Equipment

The technology savvy or "smart courtrooms" are outfitted with a 83 inch smart board, a document camera/projector, a podium with a USB/HDMI port, various monitors on the attorney tables, in the jury box, witness stand and on the bench, and what is referred to as a "kiosk" used to speed up the check-in process during court appearances. A brief description of the equipment as well as examples for how to use the equipment follows.

Smart Board: The 83-inch smart board is the star of the show. This is the key focus and acts as the control panel of the entire system. The smart board can be utilized in a variety of ways depending on the goal of the presentation. It can act as a large projector connected to a laptop or tablet, or it can operate entirely independently using information stored on a USB drive brought by the attorney. If utilized as a projector, showing a video, photograph, chart or other significant piece of evidence to the judge or jury on an enlarged screen is much more effective than passing around a smaller paper version. If utilized independently, the smart board can be navigated as a touch screen or using a stylus. Documents can be manipulated by features such as highlighting, cut and paste, drawing and zooming in and out. After manipulating the document, you have the option to save it on the USB drive to be submitted to the judge and/or jury, or for your own records. The smart board can also be used as an electronic marker board and has a variety of different colored pens/markers that can be used to draw or highlight legal points to the judge or jury. Finally, the smart board has the capability to connect to a secured Wi-Fi network allowing the attorneys to link documents to the online docket or other secured websites.

USB/HDMI Equipped Podium: A USB/HDMI equipped podium allows the attorney to bring any type of device to connect to the smart board. As discussed above, the attorney wishing to utilize the smart board as a projector may simply opt to display a document from his or her laptop or tablet. Tablets with drawing capabilities may offer another solution for an attorney who feels more comfortable manipulating documents or audio/video files while holding the tablet. A tablet also gives an attorney more mobility while presenting to a judge or jury compared to using a laptop.

Monitors for Attorneys, Jury Box, Witness Stand and Judge: Smaller monitors are positioned throughout the courtroom on counsel's table, on the witness stand, in the jury box and on the judge's bench. This allows the other parties, witnesses, jury and the judge to clearly understand and follow the documents and other content discussed and presented to the court without confusion.

Document Camera: The document camera looks like an old-school projector and works together with the smart board. Some attorneys may elect to use this technology for documents that are too old or delicate to be scanned. Another functional use for the "document" camera is to present unique pieces of evidence such as a cell phone, a particular piece of machinery, or a pharmaceutical pill. Moreover, once projected onto the smart board, the attorney can take a picture of the device and then manipulate the picture using the same highlighting and drawing tools discussed above.

Kiosk: The kiosk, often placed in the entrance of the courtroom, is used to check-in to the courtroom, eliminating the need to check-in with the part clerk upon arrival. The attorney simply enters the index number of the case he or she is appearing on and the appropriate conference form is printed with the caption information prepopulated.

Skype Videoconferencing: In an effort to reduce travel fees, many courts with this technology are open to holding court conferences and witness examinations remotely. This is done by utilizing the Skype videoconferencing application on the smart board. If opposing counsel is located out-of-state, or a witness is particularly frail and making a trip to the courthouse is burdensome, consider using Skype.

Hearing and Visually Impaired Accommodations: The courtroom is outfitted with assistive listening technology for hearing impaired witnesses and jurors. This entails a special headset that is synced with the audio system installed in the courtroom which can be controlled by the individual to suit his or her needs. In addition, the smart board houses a program that reads any selected text through a computerized voice that is played through the state of the art sound system that can be utilized to assist a visually impaired person.

Knowing how to use and maximize the courtroom technology to emphasize key pieces of evidence in a trial, oral argument or videoconference will provide significant value to a partner, counsel or senior associate who will most likely be focusing on the substantive part of the project. Offering to handle the technology aspects including making sure that documents are formatted correctly and coordinating with the judge's part clerk to make sure you or your colleague can come practice using the technology will undoubtedly allow a young associate to shine.

In an interactive CLE, the NYSBA's Committee on Technology and the Legal Profession has presented on how to use the courtroom technology. A filmed recording of this CLE is available for purchase at https://www.nysba.org/store/detail.aspx?id=VGC54 if you would like a step by step tutorial regarding the equipment.

Practice Tips

To that end, it is important to thoroughly review a judge's individual part rules to see whether he or she has any specific rules relating to the use of courtroom technology or other electronic formatting requirements. Many of the Commercial Division Judges are particularly requesting that technology be utilized more and paper documents less. For example, Justice Scarpulla maintains an entirely paperless courtroom. This means that all documents are to be electronically filed and that any exhibits or other documents that an attorney would like her to review must be provided on a USB drive.

Moreover, New York County Commercial Division's Justice Borrok has a handful of technology-related rules to be used in his courtroom. For example, Justice Borrok requires that all trial documents including marked pleadings, prior decisions, notices to admit and deposition transcripts be provided on a flash drive. He also requires strict adherence to the Commercial Division Rule 6 that all briefs "shall include bookmarks providing a listing of the document's contents" and "strongly encourages" the use of hyperlinks within documents submitted to the court. In fact, following the lead of several federal courts, the Commercial Division Advisory Council recently proposed an amendment to Commercial Division Rule 6 mandating hyperlinks in all legal memoranda.

The implementation of technology in the courtroom is well under way. Young attorneys should use this opportunity to stay informed of the changes and take the lead on technologically related projects as a way to prove their value to their colleagues.

Hamutal G. Lieberman is a Senior Associate at Zumpano Patricios & Popok, the New York office of the firm. Her practice focuses on commercial litigation, trials, arbitrations, and appeals in the areas of business, employment, real estate and construction, financial services, and securities. She also focuses on representing global financial institutions, broker-dealers and securities professionals in connection with investment disputes and employment actions (including discrimination/harassment, wrongful termination, non-compete clauses, trade secrets, compensation disputes, and promissory notes).

Ms. Lieberman further focuses her practice on litigation arising out of corporate dissolution proceedings, contested stock valuations, derivative claims, and other business disputes among owners of closely held entities, including hedge and private equity funds, professional corporations and family-owned companies.

In addition, Ms. Lieberman has experience in intellectual property litigation matters involving trademark, copyright, trade dress, false advertising, licensing, UDRP (Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy) and DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) violations, as well as proceedings before the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) for clients in the fashion, technology, hospitality, media and consumer goods industries.

Fluent in Hebrew, she maintains close ties with Israel, bringing added value to her law practice.

Member Spotlight: Brandon Lee Wolff

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By Brandon Vogel

What is your practice area?

I practice complex commercial, creditors' rights and commercial tenancy litigation. I also have experience in healthcare law.

What is your role within NYSBA?

I am the secretary of the Young Lawyers Section (YLS) and serve on NYSBA's House of Delegates as a delegate from the section.

What advice would you give young lawyers just starting their careers?

I would encourage them to consider taking a bar exam in more than one state. I practice in New York, New Jersey and Florida, which has given me opportunities to participate in cases and be involved in multiple bar associations.

I also recommend that they get involved in bar associations like NYSBA. In particular, the YLS provides a great opportunity to network with other young lawyers throughout the state. However, the key is to not just join but to get involved and be an active participant in the association. In order to get the most out of your membership, volunteer to write an article or serve on a committee. The YLS is always looking for new members to serve on its executive committee. In addition to the YLS, you can join a substantive section and even be a liaison from that section to the YLS. This allows you to work directly with experienced lawyers across the state in that practice area.

Finally, young lawyers who are involved with NYSBA can then serve as a delegate from New York at the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (ABA YLD) Assembly. This is a great opportunity to network with young lawyers from across the country at exciting conferences. I have been very involved with the ABA YLD.
Recently, I worked on presenting a resolution at the last Assembly, which expanded the eligibility criteria for a young lawyer. Demographics have changed and college graduates are taking time to pursue other interests before starting law school. The resolution, co-sponsored by NYSBA's YLS, expanded the eligibility from lawyers under 36 years of age or in their first five years of practice to under 36 or in their first 10 years of practice. This is more inclusive and more in line with NYSBA's definition, which is the first 10 years of practice. Please feel free to reach out to me if you are interested in getting involved with NYSBA's YLS or if you would like to be a New York delegate at a future ABA YLD Assembly.

Who are the happiest lawyers?

Lawyers that balance their work, involvement with community/bar associations and time with family and friends.

What is the most gratifying part of your job?

Achieving great results for my clients and then receiving thank-you emails after sharing updates with colleagues and clients.

What is something that most people don't know about you?

I was in a movie when I was five years old.

What is your passion outside of work and the law?

I enjoy spending time with my family and traveling to explore new places.

What is the best life lesson you have learned?

Do not underestimate the importance of spending quality time with your family.

What is your favorite television show?

I have two: Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

Lawyers should join the New York State Bar Association because . . .

NYSBA provides an invaluable opportunity to attend top-notch programs with distinguished lawyers throughout the state. I have attended fun and informal events like a CLE followed by a baseball game at Yankee Stadium.

I also recently participated in the U.S. Supreme Court Admission Program, sponsored by the Young Lawyers Section. This was an incredible experience. Our YLS chair, Lauren Sharkey, moved for my admission to the Supreme Court Bar as my mom and grandmother watched from the back of the courtroom. Our group of admittees sat in the first row, right in front of the justices as we were sworn in. After the ceremony, Chief Justice John Roberts spoke just to our NYSBA group and posed for a group picture. This was an excellent program that NYSBA will be running again in 2021, and I encourage you to participate. It was unforgettable.

By Julie T. Houth, Esq.

The American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (ABA YLD) Midyear Assembly was held on February 15, 2020, in Austin, Texas. New York has one of the largest delegations in the ABA YLD Assembly and young lawyers from throughout the state represented New York and the New York State Bar Association at the Assembly.

The Assembly is the policy-making body of the ABA Young Lawyers Division. The YLD Assembly precedes the ABA House of Delegates meeting, and the vote of the YLD Assembly binds the delegates from the YLD to the ABA House.

Other than the District Representative, all YLD Assembly delegates from New York are appointed on a per-meeting basis, meaning each candidate must be re-appointed before attending any future meetings as a delegate to the Assembly.

New York delegates who attended the meeting had the opportunity to voice their opinions through oral debates and vote on various policies.

Good counsel.png

The next opportunity for young lawyers to participate as NY delegates is at the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago and the YLD Assembly will be a 2-day event and will be on Friday, July 31 and Saturday, August 1, 2020. Save the date!

The New York State Bar Association Trial Academy is a five-day trial techniques program. Geared toward new and young attorneys, participants will take part in sessions which will advance and improve their courtroom skills. With an emphasis on direct participation, the Trial Academy is a great learning experience for all involved.

REGISTER NOW: https://www.nysba.org/store/events/registration.aspx?event=YOUNSP20

The 2020 agenda and faculty will be very similar to 2019. The 2019 Trial Academy program agenda can be located here: https://www.nysba.org/Sections/Young_Lawyers/Trial_Academy/2019/2019_TA_program_brochure.html

Frequently asked questions about the Trial Academy
Please note: Seats are limited and the Trial Academy sells out each year.
Young Lawyers Section Member registration fee: $950 (NYSBA Membership required)
NYSBA member registration fee: $1,000
Non-NYSBA member registration fee: $1,100

Please note that hotel accommodations are not included in the registration fee. A limited number of rooms may be available at the Statler Hotel on the Cornell University campus. To make a hotel reservation at the Statler, call the Statler Hotel Reservations Department at 1-800-541-2501 and indicate you are with the New York State Bar Association group. For alternative hotel accommodations please visit www.campustravel.com/university/cornellfor local recommendations. Some local hotels have a daily shuttle to Cornell. The NYSBA has a limited room block and special rate only of $189.00 with the Statler, which is available until 3/6/20.

Under New York's MCLE rule, this program has been approved for a total of up to 37.5 MCLE credit hours, consisting of 2.0 credit hours in ETHICS and 35.5 credit hours in SKILLS. This program is transitional and therefore suitable for newly admitted attorneys. This program is accredited for MCLE credit in New York State only. Attorneys seeking credit in other jurisdictions may contact the governing body for CLE in their respective locations for credit application details.

Special Thanks to these NYSBA Sections for Co-Sponsoring the Trial Academy

Gold Sponsor
Business Law Section
Family Law Section

Silver Sponsor
Criminal Justice Section
Labor and Employment Law Section
Real Property Law Section
Torts, Insurance Compensation Law Section
Trial Lawyers Section

Bronze Sponsors
Elder Law and Special Needs Section
Intellectual Property Law Section
Trusts and Estates Law Section

New Members of the Young Lawyers Section

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Please join me in welcoming the following new members to the Young Lawyers Section!

Judicial District: 01

David Burick

David John Clark, Esq.

Mariel Ann Echemendia, Esq.

Alexandra Ferrara

Jennifer L. Jacobs

Amy Lynn Kwak, Esq.

Erin Elyse Marine

Mitchell Stephen Markarian, Esq.

Silvia Estefania Marroquin, Esq.

Erik P. Pramschufer

Judicial District: 02

William Carl Dawson, Esq.

Sophie West

Judicial District: 07

William J. Creary, II

Mary Ann Krisa

J. Justin Woods

Judicial District: 08

Kasey Kaylene Barrett, Esq.

Greg Scott Gaglione, Jr.

Emily G. Sauers

Octavio Villegas, Esq.

Samantha Ida Valentina White, Esq.

Mara Verena Inga Zrzavy, Esq.

Ardinez Domgjoni, Esq.

Zhenlan Hu

Marie Yasmin Marquez Sanchez, Esq.

Hannah Catherine Sowell, Esq.

Judicial District: 12

Brian Sarfo

Judicial District: 99

Veronica Abraham, Esq.

Sheeba Shyam Ajwani, Esq.

Cara Anan

Juan Carlos Arce

Ines Bloch Esq.

Harel Bocobza

Taylor Ashley Thomas, Esq.

Osayame Martin West-Idahosa, Esq.

Katsuya Yumoto, Esq.

Upcoming Recommended Events

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Upcoming Bridging the Gap CLE Programs

The New York State Bar Association is pleased to offer newly admitted attorneys a two-day Bridging the Gap CLE program. Transitional courses are designed to help newly admitted attorneys develop a foundation in the practical skills, techniques and procedures that are essential to the practice of law.

The Bridging the Gap continuing legal education program offers 16.0 total credits. Newly admitted attorneys can satisfy all of their annual MCLE requirements by attending this two-day program which is ideal for "bridging the gap" between law school and the realities of practicing law in New York State. Experienced attorneys who have an interest in other areas of practice can also attend and benefit from this program by learning practical information from skilled and experienced practitioners.

Newly admitted attorneys must complete at least 16 transitional CLE credit hours in each of the first two years of admission to the Bar. The first set of 16 transitional CLE credit hours must be completed by the first anniversary of admission to the Bar, in the designated categories of credit. The second set of 16 transitional CLE credit hours must be completed between the first and second anniversaries. To receive skills credit, newly admitted attorneys must take accredited transitional CLE courses in traditional live classroom settings, or through attendance at fully interactive video conference locations that have been approved by the CLE Board for use by newly admitted attorneys. For more information about the CLE Rules, please go to www.nycourts.gov/Attorneys/CLE.

Bridging the Gap | NYC
Thursday, March 26 - Friday, March 27, 2020 | 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. | NYC
This program will also be streamed as a live webcast. A live videoconference option will be available in Albany.
Register Here: https://www.nysba.org/store/events/registration.aspx?event=0GV94

Bridging the Gap | NYC
Thursday, April 2 - Friday, April 3, 2020 | 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. | NYC
Register Here: https://www.nysba.org/store/events/registration.aspx?event=0GW64

Bridging the Gap | London
Thursday, April 16 - Friday, April 17, 2020 | 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. | London
Register Here: https://www.nysba.org/store/events/registration.aspx?event=0GW4UK

2020 TOPICS:
Basics of Civil Litigation in NYS | Handling a Slip/Trip and Fall Case in New York
Deposition Skills for New Layers | Handling an Auto Accident Case in NYS
Intellectual Property Law 101
Drafting Contracts | Key Considerations for New Attorneys
Consumer Bankruptcy 101
Elder Law and Special Needs Planning 101 | Advising Clients about Medicare, Medicaid & Special Needs Trusts
Cross Examination | Handling a DWI Case in NYS Review of New Criminal Discovery Legislation
Drafting Pre-Nuptial Agreements | Key Skills in Drafting and Client Counseling

If you have any questions about this program, please contact Katherine Suchocki, Esq. Director of Continuing Legal Education, Patrick Boland, CLE Program Manager or Leanne Isabelle, CLE Program Coordinator.

March 13, 2020


This is a complimentary event, but pre-registration is required.

REGISTER HERE: https://www.nysba.org/store/events/registration.aspx?event=YOUNMAR20

Download Program Flyer: https://www.nysba.org/Sections/Young_Lawyers/Events/2020/YLS_District8Wellness_flyer.html

This event will include the following local vendors and participants to assist with wellness and health information:

Patricia Milks Rusinek, LMHC, CASAC, discussing stress, setting appropriate boundaries with colleagues and clients, self-care and how it can positively affect all aspects of home and professional life.

Dr. Heather Heim will discuss the benefits of regular chiropractic care on overall health and stress levels.

Ideal Weight Loss Clinic will offer tips on healthy eating, making healthy food choices, give an introduction to the Ideal You method and program, free healthy snacks will be provided, free biometric scale readings and mini-health profiles will be offered.

Robert J. Petrillo, AIG Financial will offer overall financial health information, tips on saving for retirement and options tailed for practitioners.

Power Yoga Buffalo will offer introductory member classes for participants. Please bring your own mat and blocks. This a Baptiste Power Flow style program without the hot room. Open to all levels.

Please contact Tiffany Bardwell at tbardwell@nysba.org for more information.

Monday, May 3, 2021


The Young Lawyers Section is proud to sponsor the 2021 admissions program to the United States Supreme Court. You do not need to be a member of the Young Lawyers Section to participate.

The ceremony for admission to the United States Supreme Court is scheduled for Monday, May 3, 2021. Our last Supreme Court admissions program was well-received and filled up very quickly. Save the date for this exciting event. More information will be available in spring 2020.

For more information please contact Tiffany Bardwell at tbardwell@nysba.org.

Join the Young Lawyers Section

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Become the voice of newly-admitted and young attorneys in NYSBA. Designed to help make the transition from law school to practice an easier one for newly-admitted attorneys, the Young Lawyers Section connects you with experienced attorneys lending general advice, legal guidance, or expert opinions. Take advantage of educational programs, networking events, and the exclusive Young Lawyers Section Mentor Directory, which is just one of the Section's mentoring initiatives. The Section publishes Electronically In Touch and Perspective. Law students may also join the Section and get a jump start on their careers.


Are you interested in volunteering for a Section Committee? Please email Amy Jasiewicz at ajasiewicz@nysba.org and indicate the committees you wish to join. The Young Lawyers Section has the following committees:

  • Executive Committee
  • Communications Committee
  • Community Service and Pro Bono Committee
  • Diversity Committee
  • Law Student Development Committee
  • Long-Range Planning Committee
  • Membership Committee
  • Mentoring Committee
  • Nominating Committee
  • Perspective Editorial Board


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The Officers of YLS and the Editors of Electronically In Touch wish to make clear that the thoughts and opinions expressed in the articles that follow are those of the respective authors and do not necessarily represent the thoughts and opinions of the authors' employers or clients, the New York State Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section, or its Officers or Executive Committee.

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This page is an archive of entries from February 2020 listed from newest to oldest.

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April 2020 is the next archive.

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