THIS WEEK AT THE CITY BAR
MONDAY, JUNE 2
6 PM – 9 PM, CLE
Ethics In The Electronic Age: Be Careful When Using That Smart Phone, Tablet, Blog, Social Network

6:30 PM – 8 PM, Event
Plan Mediation in Bankruptcy


TUESDAY, JUNE 3
6 PM – 8 PM, Event
Henry L. Stimson Medal Presentation

6 PM – 9 PM, CLE

The Multi-State Trusts & Estates Practice: How Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, New Jersey & Pennsylvania Laws Affect New York T&E Practitioners


WEDNESDAY, JUNE 4
8:40 AM – 5 PM, CLE
4th Annual Law Firm CFO/CIO/COO Forum

6 PM – 7:30 PM, Event
International Law and Crisis in Ukraine: A Roundtable Discussion

6:30 PM – 8:30 PM, Event
The Art of Schmoozing


THURSDAY, JUNE 5
6 PM – 9 PM, CLE
Current Developments in Commercial Division Practice


FRIDAY, JUNE 6
9 AM – 11:45 AM, CLE
Persuasion Skills for Women Attorneys

6 PM – 8 PM, Event
Chamber Music Committee's Recital

MONDAY, JUNE 9
8:30 AM – 10 AM, Event
Hands-on Tech Marketing Workshop for Solo and Small Firm Practitioners (Three Part Series)
Part III: Hand-on Email Newsletter Workshop


6:30 PM – 7:30 PM, Event
Special Screening of the Award-Winning Short Film Le Refuge and Q&A with Filmmakers and Cast

     AROUND THE BAR

On May 28th, Steve Banks (right), the newly appointed Human Resources Administration Commissioner and former Attorney-in-Chief of The Legal Aid Society, spoke at the City Bar about the future of HRA under Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration. Pictured with him is Pete Kempner, Chair of the City Bar's Social Welfare Law Committee.



On May 29th, the City Bar presented the annual Kathryn A. McDonald Awards for excellence in service to the New York City Family Court, and held a reception honoring the Family Court Judges of New York City. Receiving the awards were Catherine Douglass, Executive Director of Her Justice, and, posthumously, Alfred Siegel, former Deputy Director of the Center for Court Innovation. From left: Hon. Edwina Richardson-Mendelson, Administrative Judge for the Family Court of the City of New York; Catherine Douglass; Hon. Jonathan Lippman, Chief Judge of the State of New York; and Debra L. Raskin, New York City Bar Association President.

     44TH STREET BLOG

City Bar Welcomes Report Finding Appointed Immigration Counsel

Would Pay for Itself
The New York City Bar Association welcomes the issuance of NERA Economic Consulting's report "Cost of Counsel in Immigration: Economic Analysis of Proposal Providing Public Counsel to Indigent Persons Subject to Immigration Removal Proceedings." NERA's report, by Dr. John Montgomery, affirms the City Bar's longstanding support for appointed counsel in immigration removal proceedings. The report finds that a national immigration federal public defender system's benefits could offset the federal government's costs, through detention, foster care and transportation savings, even without quantifying other likely fiscal, social and administrative benefits. Read more.

     ANNOUNCEMENTS

Ann Rappleye Joins City Bar as Director of Continuing Legal Education
The New York City Bar Association has hired Ann Rappleye to lead its Continuing Legal Education department. Rappleye joins the City Bar following 20 years of experience as a law-firm and in-house attorney. Read more.

     NEW MEMBER BENEFIT

Casemaker
All City Bar members now have access to Casemaker. So we decided to give Casemaker Support Team members a chance to tell us a little bit about the product. Read more here. Please log in to your Member Account to access Casemaker.

     RECENT COMMITTEE ACTIVITY
Federal Securities Fraud Class Actions
The Supreme Court's anticipated decision in Halliburton II will be a landmark event in the world of class action securities litigation. In its report, The Possible Impact of Hallibuton II on Securities Class Action Litigation, the Committee on Securities Litigation provides an overview of the issues before the Supreme Court in that case, followed by a concise explanation of the history and key concepts most relevant to the current debate, including the efficient capital markets hypothesis, the fraud-on-the-market presumption, and the legal landscape in which the Supreme Court recently granted certiorari. The report then seeks to identify and analyze the potential implications of the Supreme Court's decision in Halliburton II.

Settlement-Related Disclosure in the Commercial Division
In a joint report, the Committee on State Courts of Superior Jurisdiction and the Council on Judicial Administration expressed opposition to the Office of Court Administration's proposed amendment to 22 NYCRR § 202.70(g) (Commercial Division Rule 8(a)) as it relates to settlement-related disclosure. The proposed amendment would add settlement-related disclosure to the list of topics that counsel are required to discuss prior to the preliminary conference. The report notes that Commercial Division Rules already make clear that disclosure in aid of settlement is among the subjects about which the parties should consult in advance of the preliminary conference if either party believes that such disclosure might be appropriate or helpful. Requiring the parties to discuss this subject in advance of the preliminary conference, the report argues, will only serve to invite disputes, including disputes over issues such as whether a party violated the rule by simply refusing to have as thoroughgoing a discussion about settlement-related discovery as its adversary would have liked.

Assignment of Cases to the Commercial Division
The Committee on State Courts of Superior Jurisdiction expressed opposition to the Office of Court Administration's proposed amendment of 22 NYCRR § 202.70(d) (Rule of the Commercial Division) as it relates to the assignment of cases in the Commercial Division. The proposed amendment would require that, absent good cause shown, a party wishing to have a case assigned to the Commercial Division must file a Commercial Division RJI within 90 days of service of the Complaint. In the report, the Committee argues that, if the parties are content to conduct discovery without such involvement and do not have any issues that actually require judicial resolution, there is no reason to penalize them by making a Commercial Division assignment unavailable simply because they were able to proceed for some time without the aid of the courts.

Consumer Credit Cases
In a joint report, the Committees on Civil Court and Consumer Affairs expressed support for the Office of Court Administration's proposed reforms for consumer credit cases, which include: 1) adoption of statewide affidavit forms for use in seeking entry of default judgments; 2) expansion of notice requirements to defendants; and 3) adoption of pro se court forms currently used in New York City. Together, the report states, the proposed reforms will help ensure that plaintiffs meet the required evidentiary requirements for entry of default judgments and will facilitate the fair administration of justice in these cases by improving access to the courts for unrepresented defendants. In their comments, the Committees recommended several changes to make the proposed reforms more effective.

Instant Run-off Voting
In a joint report, the Committees on Election Law and New York City Affairs expressed support for A.7013-A/S.6862, which would implement instant run-off voting for the primaries for citywide office in New York City. The bill would allow voters to rank up to five candidates in order of preference on their ballot during the primary. Under the legislation, if the candidate with the most votes garners less than 50% plus one vote of the votes, the two candidates with the most votes proceed to a second round of ballot-counting. In this second round, each ballot is counted as a vote for whichever of the two advancing candidates is ranked higher by that voter. The candidate with the most votes in the second round would be declared the winner of the run-off. This approach, the report argues, would save New York City considerable time, resources and money over conducting the run-off election now required by law if no candidate for citywide office receives 40% of the vote in the primary, while at the same time ensuring that the candidate ultimately elected in a primary has significant support from her/his party.

ERISA Fee Disclosure
The Committee on Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation, in a letter to the U.S. Department of Labor, commented on a proposed amendment to Section 408(b)(2) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). Section 408(b)(2) requires that certain service providers to employee benefit plans disclose information about the service providers' services, status under ERISA with respect to the plans, and compensation (both direct and indirect) received in connection with those services. The proposed amendment would require covered service providers to furnish a summary guide to these disclosures in certain circumstances to assist plan fiduciaries in reviewing the disclosures required by Section 408(b)(2). Though the Committee generally agrees with the Department's efforts to promote clarity in fee disclosure, it recommends specific modifications to the proposed amendment that preserve flexibility in covered service provider disclosure and promote the utility of required fee disclosure for the entire pension plan industry, while at the same time managing the cost burden for covered service providers.

     CITY BAR IN THE NEWS

New York Times, May 29, 2014
Public Defender System for Immigrants Facing Deportation Would Pay for Itself, Study Says

"Every year, tens of thousands of people appear in immigration court to fight deportation orders without a lawyer to assist them....For years, immigration lawyers and other supporters have pressed to change this. On Friday, the New York City Bar Association plans to release a study contending that cost should not be an obstacle to the creation of a public defender system, paid for by the federal government, for indigent immigrants facing deportation. The 37-page study was conducted by NERA Economic Consulting, an international firm based in New York, at the behest of the Bar Association."

New York Law Journal, June 2, 2014
Study Supports Funding for Immigrant Counsel

"The New York City Bar Association released a study supporting its position that federally-funded counsel for immigrants facing deportation would save the government more than $200 million by reducing costs for detention and speeding up resolution of immigration cases. The study, solicited by Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, working pro bono on behalf of the bar, said providing public defender services would cost $208 million annually, but detaining those facing deportation would shrink costs by at least $173 million to $174 million."


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