Washington Lawyer

Bar Happenings: February 2014

From Washington Lawyer, February 2014

By Kathryn Alfisi

Illustration by Mick WigginsD.C. Bar Welcomes New President at 2014 Celebration of Leadership
The 2014 Celebration of Leadership: The D.C. Bar Awards Dinner and Annual Meeting will be held on June 17 at the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel, 1127 Connecticut Avenue NW.

Highlights of this year’s celebration include the inauguration of incoming Bar president Brigida Benitez of Steptoe & Johnson LLP, the announcement of the 2014 D.C. Bar election results, and the presentation of awards to D.C. Bar sections, pro bono attorneys, law firms, and others who have served the Bar and its community.

The evening will open with the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Program’s Presidents’ Reception at 6 p.m. to honor Benitez, followed by dinner and the presentation of awards at 7:30. The reception will benefit the Pro Bono Program, which is supported entirely by voluntary contributions.

The evening also features the presentation of the Bar’s 2014 Beatrice Rosenberg Award for Excellence in Government Service and the Thurgood Marshall Award. 

For more information about the Presidents’ Reception or to make a donation to the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Program, contact Kathy Downey at 202-588-1857 or kdowney@erols.com. For more information about the Awards Dinner and Annual Meeting, contact Verniesa R. Allen at 202-737-4700, ext. 3239, or annualmeeting@dcbar.org.

Save the Date! Women’s Bar, FCBA Mentoring Supper
The Communications Law Forum of the Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia and the Young Lawyers Committee of the Federal Communications Bar Association will hold their fourth annual mentoring supper from 6:30 to 9 p.m. on February 26 at Hogan Lovells, 555 13th Street NW. The event is an opportunity for attendees to network with some of the top communications lawyers in the District. For more information, call 202-639-8880 or visit www.wbadc.org.

Courses Tackle Ethics Issues Facing Corporate Counsel, Lawyer-Lobbyists
In February the D.C. Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program will examine the ethics issues unique to corporate counsel and, in a separate course, will explore the ethical considerations for lawyers and law firms engaged in lobbying.

“Ethics Issues Facing Corporate Counsel” on February 3 is a lively, fast-paced program where faculty will use hypotheticals to discuss conflicts of interest, confidentiality, corporate wrongdoing, and compliance with the Sarbanes–Oxley Act requirements.

Saul Jay Singer, D.C. Bar legal ethics counsel, and Thomas E. Spahn, a partner at McGuireWoods LLP, will address questions such as what should counsel do when one of his or her client’s affiliates disagrees with another affiliate, and can a law firm represent one of counsel’s client’s affiliates while taking a matter adverse to another affiliate.

Faculty also will look into how to handle requests for privileged documents from employees and former employees of the company that counsel represents, who owns the attorney–client relationship after a company that counsel represents sells its stock or assets, and “fiduciary exception” and when it applies.

The course takes place from 6 to 8:15 p.m. and is cosponsored by all sections of the D.C. Bar.

On February 27 the CLE Program will offer the course “For Lawyers Who Lobby (and Their Firms): Legal Ethics and Unauthorized Practice Update” to help D.C. lawyers and law firms involved in lobbying activities understand the implications of opinions issued by the D.C. Court of Appeals Committee on Unauthorized Practice of Law and the D.C. Bar Legal Ethics Committee concerning conflict of interest rules, confidentiality, and other ethics considerations.

Led by Thomas B. Mason of Zuckerman Spaeder LLP, this course will use hypothetical scenarios to explore when lobbying is governed by the ethics rules, the ethical implications for law firms with nonlawyers engaged in lobbying, what issues arise for law firms that lobby and have law offices in different jurisdictions, how conflict of interest ethics rules apply to lobbying matters, lobbying and the rules preventing contact with represented parties, confidentiality and attorney–client privilege in the lobbying context, and advance waivers and lobbying.

The course takes place from 6 to 8:15 p.m. and is cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section; Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Section; Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Section; Government Contracts and Litigation Section; Labor and Employment Law Section; and Law Practice Management Section.

Both courses will be held at the D.C. Bar Conference Center, 1101 K Street NW, first floor.

For more information, contact the CLE Program at 202-626-3488 or visit www.dcbar.org/cle.

D.C. Courts Line Up Events to Mark Black History Month
The District of Columbia Courts will celebrate Black History Month in February with an event every Friday. The annual observance features entertaining and enlightening events that celebrate black heritage.

This year’s celebration include a program on the Freedom Riders, a book club talk on Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave, and a month-long scavenger hunt that will reveal some of the history behind the D.C. Courthouse and Judiciary Square.

For more information on February events, contact Anita Jarman at 202-879-1218 or anita.jarman@dcsc.gov.

CLE Program Offers Introductory Course on Essential Trial Skills
In February the D.C. Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program will offer the four-part “Essential Trial Skills Series,” a great introduction to and overview of the trial skills a lawyer must possess in the courtroom.

The series includes lectures, discussions, and demonstrations emphasizing the rules, practices, and procedures in local and federal courts in the Washington metropolitan area. Both civil and criminal trial considerations will be discussed.

The series opens on February 5 with “Jury Selection,” which will examine the process and procedure of jury selection, including the composition of the jury pool, peremptory strikes, and use of jury selection services.

Paulette Chapman, a partner at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot, L.L.P.; Janet Mitchell of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia; and Dwight Murray, formerly of Jordan Coyne & Savits L.L.P., will lead this session.

Part two, “Opening Statements and Closing Arguments,” on February 12 will help attorneys start out right and finish strong at their next trial. This session will look at opening and closing arguments from several key perspectives, including preparation, presentation, and objections.

Debra S. Katz, a partner at Katz, Marshall & Banks, LLP, and Michael F. Williams, a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, will serve as faculty.

Part three, “Witness Preparation and Direct Examination,” on February 19 will cover attorneys’ vital task of preparing witnesses to testify credibly at trial. This session will examine techniques and strategies for effective direct examination, maximizing a witness’s potential and minimizing his or her weaknesses.

Attendees will hear from Catherine D. Bertram, a partner at Regan Zambri Long & Bertram, PLLC; Patrick J. Coyne, a partner at Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP; and Sara E. Kropf of the Law Office of Sara E. Kropf.

The final session, “Cross-Examination,” on February 26 will teach attendees how to use cross-examination to tell their story, to control the witness, and to impeach the witness. This class is useful to attorneys who have yet to cross-examine a witness, as well as to practitioners who have a modest level of trial experience. It will delve into the objectives, strategies, tactics, mechanics, and legal principles of effective cross-examination.

Patrick J. Attridge of King & Attridge and L. Barrett Boss, a partner at Cozen O’Connor, will serve as faculty.

All sessions take place from 6 to 9:15 p.m. at the D.C. Bar Conference Center, 1101 K Street NW, first floor. The series is cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Antitrust and Consumer Law Section; Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Section; Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Section; Criminal Law and Individual Rights Section; Family Law Section; Government Contracts and Litigation Section; Intellectual Property Law Section; Labor and Employment Law Section; Law Practice Management Section; Litigation Section; Real Estate, Housing and Land Use Section; and Tort Law Section.
 For more information, contact the CLE Program at 202-626-3488 or visit www.dcbar.org/cle.

Pro Bono Program Training Prepares Attorneys to Handle Asylum Cases
On February 28 the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Program, in association with Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights Coalition, Whitman-Walker Health, and Human Rights First, will offer basic training for attorneys interested in representing asylum seekers. 

The training is intended to prepare pro bono attorneys to represent indigent clients in asylum cases at the affirmative stage as well as detained individuals. Topics include U.S. asylum law, how to prepare an I-589 Application for Asylum form, documentation of asylum cases, how to work with victims of trauma, and credible and reasonable fear interviews. Practice before the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Asylum Office also will be covered.

Faculty will include experienced immigration practitioners as well as staff from the Arlington USCIS Asylum Office.

Training participants are strongly encouraged to accept a pro bono referral from one of the sponsoring organizations. Attorneys who agree to take on a pro bono case in the future must be admitted to practice in some U.S. jurisdiction and have their own malpractice insurance. This training is also appropriate for paralegals and law students. 

The training is cosponsored by Catholic Charities Immigration Legal Services, the D.C. Bar International Law Section and Litigation Section, and Tahirih Justice Center.

The training takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the D.C. Bar Conference Center, 1101 K Street NW, first floor. For more information, contact the Pro Bono Program at 202-626-3489.

Georgetown Law’s International Trade Update Returns in February
Georgetown University Law Center’s Continuing Legal Education will hold its 2014 International Trade Update on February 27 and 28, an event that is expected to draw private practitioners, government attorneys, and in-house counsel seeking practical and timely information on international trade.

Attendees will learn important new developments affecting the trade and customs bars and will hear critical interpretation of those developments by senior partners at law firms, top government officials, judges from the U.S. Court of International Trade, and corporate counsel.     

Professor John H. Jackson, director of Georgetown’s Institute of International Economic Law, will be the keynote speaker, while Jan Woznowski, former director of the Rules Division of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade and World Trade Organizations secretariats, will serve as luncheon speaker.

The program runs from 8:15 a.m. to 6 p.m. on day one and from 8 a.m. to 4:50 p.m. on day two at Georgetown University Law Center’s Hart Auditorium, 600 New Jersey Avenue NW.

For more information, call 202-662-9890 or e-mail cle@law.georgetown.edu, or visit www.law.georgetown.edu/cle.

Save the Date! 15th Annual Youth Law Fair
The Superior Court of the District of Columbia and the D.C. Bar Litigation Section will present the 15th Annual Youth Law Fair on March 22, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the H. Carl Moultrie Courthouse, 500 Indiana Avenue NW. This free, educational event brings together students, lawyers, judges, educators, and community leaders to explore issues facing students in the Washington metropolitan area. For more information, contact the D.C. Bar Sections Office at 202-626-3455 or outreach@dcbar.org.

February Offerings Cover Business Entities, Legislative Drafting
In February the D.C. Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program will present a course on legislative drafting and two courses focused on limited liability companies (LLCs) and other business entities in the District of Columbia.

The February 4 course “LLCs in the District of Columbia and Other Business Entities” will guide participants through the laws governing these entities as well as their legal concepts, organizational principles, tax considerations, and attributes.

Attendees will learn why more than 90 percent of business entities formed in the District are LLCs, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of other legal entity forms, including corporations, nonprofit corporations, professional corporations, general partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability limited partnerships, unincorporated nonprofit associations, and statutory business trusts.

Nicholas G. Karambelas of Sfikas & Karambelas LLP will help attendees understand the law and its practical application for their practice.

Karambelas also will teach the February 18 course “Drafting Operating Agreements for LLCs and Other Business Entities,” which will explore the ins and outs of the operating agreement, including tax considerations.

Karambelas will cover indemnification and contribution, fiduciary duties, arbitration, bankruptcy, management rights and obligations, financial rights and obligations, contract governance, “good faith” and “fair dealing,” enforcement provisions, and modification of agreement.

Attorneys who sign up for both courses will receive a $29 discount. Both courses take place 6 to 9:15 p.m. and are cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Arts, Entertainment, Media and Sports Law Section; Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Section; District of Columbia Affairs Section; Family Law Section; Law Practice Management Section; and Real Estate, and Housing and Land Use Section.

Finally, on February 20, the CLE Program will offer the course “Statute Drafting Workshop: D.C. Council Case Study,” which will benefit anyone who has ever had to seek a legislative solution to a client’s problem or who is involved in drafting statutes.

V. David Zvenyach, general counsel for the D.C. Council, will walk attendees through the process of drafting legislation for consideration by the council. Participants will learn how to approach the drafting process and how to frame the issues for it. They also will learn the difference between legislating by act or resolution, and the forms of bills and resolutions.

Using hands-on exercises, attendees will learn about composition, stylistic considerations, and special rules for amending existing law, as well as the components of a bill, drafting considerations, savings clauses, and conforming amendments.

The course takes place from 5:30 to 7:45 p.m. and is cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section, Antitrust and Consumer Law Section, and District of Columbia Affairs Section.

All courses will be held at the D.C. Bar Conference Center, 1101 K Street NW, first floor.

For more information, contact the CLE Program at 202-626-3488 or visit www.dcbar.org/cle.

Courses Focus on U.S. Government Restrictions on International Transactions
The D.C. Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program will hold two courses in February that look at U.S. government restrictions on international business transactions.

The February 11 course “Export Controls and Economic Sanctions 2014: Recent Developments and Current Issues” will focus on current topics such as developments under the Obama administration’s Export Control Reform Initiative.

Faculty will discuss the proposed “600 Series” that migrates certain items from the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) to the Commerce Control List; changes to U.S. trade sanctions and embargo programs in light of global political events; and changes to the ITAR rules pursuant to the implementation of the Defense Trade Cooperation Treaty between the United States and the United Kingdom.

Carol A. Kalinoski of Carol A. Kalinoski & Associates, Inc. and Thomas P. Scott III, of counsel at Ladner & Associates, PC, will serve as faculty.

The course takes place from 6 to 8:15 p.m. and is cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section; Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Section; and International Law Section.

The new course “U.S. Economic Sanctions and the Office of Foreign Assets Control: An Introduction” on February 25 will provide a practical introduction to U.S. economic sanctions and to the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which administers U.S. economic sanction regulations.

Attendees will learn about the various types of economic sanctions imposed by the United States on certain countries, individuals, businesses, and other entities. Faculty will explain how the sanctions operate, review licensing procedures and exceptions, and discuss enforcement and voluntary disclosures for violations of sanctions.

Geoffrey M. Goodale, founder and chief executive officer of Trade Law Advisors, PLLC; Louis Rothberg, of counsel at Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP; Tina Shaughnessy, counsel for international trade controls at General Electric Company; and John Smith, associate director of the Office of Foreign Assets Control at the U.S. Department of Treasury, will serve as faculty.

The course takes place from 6 to 9:15 p.m. and is cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section; Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Section; and International Law Section.

Both courses will be held at the D.C. Bar Conference Center, 1101 K Street NW, first floor.

For more information, contact the CLE Program at 202-626-3488 or visit www.dcbar.org/cle.

Reach D.C. Bar staff writer Kathryn Alfisi at kalfisi@dcbar.org.