Monday, February 28, 2011
This Week at the City Bar
Recent Committee Activity
City Bar in the News
This Week at the City Bar
6 PM – 8:30 PM, CLE

Heroic Conversations: The Key to Organizational Success

6:30 PM, Event

The Art of Schmoozing

9 AM 11 AM, CLE
Professional Liability & Legal Ethics: Preventing, Defending, and Obtaining Insurance for Claims Against Law Firms

6:30 PM – 8 PM, Event
Where are the Women in Commercial and Appellate Litigation?

The question has been raised by the women judges in New York’s Appellate Division, First Department. Pictured above from left: Hon. Sallie Manzanet-Daniels, Hon. Rosalyn H. Richter, Hon. Dianne T. Renwick, Hon. Angela M. Mazzarelli, Hon. Betty Ellerin, Hon. Karla Moskowitz, Hon. Helen E. Freedman, and Hon. Sheila Abdus-Salaam. At Tuesday’s program, a distinguished panel of both lawyers and judges hope to shed light on this issue and explore solutions to this problem. For more information click here.

6:30 PM 8 PM, Event
Careers in the Fashion and Merchandising Industry

7 PM, Event
Breaking Business Barriers: from New York to Paris to Dakar - Unscrambling the New Africa

6 PM – PM,
Current Legal Ethical Issues

6:30 PM – 8:30 PM,
Everything You Wanted to Know About Becoming an Assistant United States Attorney but Were Afraid to Ask


4:30 PM, Event
Best Practices for Educators and Employers Building and Supporting the Pipeline

6 PM 9 PM, Event
Lord & Taylor Shopping Event: Lawyers Connect First Thursdays

6 PM 9 PM, CLE
Bankruptcy 101


9 AM 12 PM, CLE
The Role of An Attorney on a Nonprofit Board

6 PM, Event
Friday Evening Chamber Music

Recent Committee Activity
Testamentary Trusts

In recent years, the revocable trust has become an increasingly popular and important estate planning tool. While the disposition to a revocable trust is permissible under Section 3-3.7 of New York’s Estates, Powers and Trusts Law, New York law does not permit the testator to incorporate by reference the terms of the trust into the will, forcing the attorney-draftsman to restate the terms of an existing trust in the will. In an effort to remedy this, the Committee on Trusts, Estates, and Surrogate’s Courts issued a report supporting the reintroduction of Assembly Bill A.8509, which would allow a testator to incorporate in a will, as a testamentary trust, the provisions of a pre-existing inter vivos trust that was revoked or terminated prior to the testator’s death.

Immigration Detainers
In a letter to New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, the Committees on Criminal Courts, Immigration and Nationality Law, and Corrections urged the City Council to pass legislation that would limit the Department of Correction’s collaboration with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the holding of immigrant New Yorkers under ICE detainers. The Department’s current collaboration policy, the letter notes, costs the City millions of dollars every year and causes significant harm to the City’s residents while creating substantial roadblocks in the criminal justice system. The recommended legislation would set guidelines for the Department of Correction’s interaction with ICE.

City Bar in the News
New York Law Journal, February 25, 2011
Panel Finds Canadian Gay Marriage Valid in Probate Case
A state appeals court has cleared the way for a same-sex spouse to inherit the estate of his deceased partner. The Appellate Division, First Department, held yesterday in Matter of the Estate of H. Kenneth Ranftle that recognizing the marriage in Canada of H. Kenneth Ranftle and J. Craig Leiby, who was designated as Mr. Ranftle’s “surviving spouse and sole distributee,” did not violate public policy. “[T]he Legislature’s failure to authorize same-sex couples to enter into marriage in New York or require recognition of validly performed out-of-state same-sex marriages, cannot serve as an expression of public policy for the State,” the unanimous panel wrote in an unsigned ruling….Eve Preminger, Jeffrey S. Trachtman, Jason M. Moff and Lee C. Strock of Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel submitted an amicus brief on behalf of the New York City Bar, which backed Mr. Leiby.

New York Law Journal, February 23, 2011
Firm Dominates Foreclosures, but Faces Growing Criticism
Baum and his firm, Steven J. Baum, P.C., have faced increasing criticism with a surge in foreclosures sought by client lenders, who have been struggling to mop up the financial debris from the burst housing bubbleˇK.Attorneys representing homeowners have been highly critical of the Baum firm, claiming that the documentation it submits is at times inadequate. “Their business model is high-volume and that means sloppy practice,” said Lynn Armentrout, director of the New York City Bar’s Justice Center Foreclosure Project, which frequently squares off against the Baum firm. “This is a deliberate business plan and earns them lots of money,” said Armentrout, who nevertheless added that she has forged cordial and respectful relationships with some Baum attorneys.

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