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5th Annual REALity CLE, May 4-5: The Real Aspects of Running a Successful Law Practice

5th Annual Reality CLEA Unique Retreat for Attorneys That Drive in the Small Practice Lane as Well as Those New to the Practice of Law!

We are excited to announce that the Reality CLE program is back for 2017 with fresh new content! Join your fellow small firm colleagues on May 4-5, 2017 at the Crowne Plaza Airport for two energized days packed with valuable information you can put immediately to use in your practice.

To help you manage your budget, ICLEF has again arranged a special low tuition rate for everyone, which includes lunch on the first day, refreshment break service throughout, printed and electronic materials for all sessions, 14.5 hours of CLE credit (including 4.25 hours towards ethics) and FREE parking.

The Lawyer’s Compass: Character, Ethics & Trust for the Small Law Office
Lawyers are different. Our role in society in general, and the legal system in particular, places great responsibility in our hands. Our ethical rules call upon us to exercise that responsibility in a manner that differentiates us positively in our modern world. The Lawyer’s Compass presentation focuses your attention on the critical interplay between your character and competencies and how they combine to build trust in client relationships.  In particular, you will:
• Learn How & Why Trust is the Primary Driver of Success In the Attorney/Client Relationship & in Your Practice
• Discover How Your Character is Derived from Your Values & Actions
• Learn Professional Competencies That Will Help You Quickly Build Trust in Client Relationships
• Discover a System for Identifying & Managing the Four Expectations That Every Client Holds in Every Engagement
• Explore How We Derive Congruence, Satisfaction & Contentment in Legal Practice
• Build Your Own Lawyer’s Compass to Guide Your Efforts in Building Future Personal & Professional Fulfillment & Success

“Nuggets of Brilliance” with James J. Bell

Business Development Tool Kit For Your Practice
• Branding & Ethics
• Staying Connected with Clients & Referral Sources
• Social Media Presence – What Is Effective & Ethical?
• Dos, Don’ts, and Best Practices
• Endorsements and Testimonials

The “Business Aspects” of Practice in the Modern Digital Age
• Is Your Website ADA Accessible? Are You Sure?
• Systems for Time and Billing, including Online Billing
• Organizing the Flow of Work, Proper Use of Legal Support Staff
– i.e., not crossing the line into the unauthorized practice of law
• Client Communications
• Office Manuals

How To Effectively Use Technology In Your Practice

Things You Don’t Normally Think About, But Should
• Unexpected Medical Leaves
• Planning for Vacations
• Disaster Preparedness
• The Insurance Checklist (including Professional Liability Insurance)
• Cyber Security
• Should You Consider Expanding Your Practice?
• Planning for When You Retire – What happens next to your practice?
• E-Filing, now what?

Don’t Forget the Fundamentals!
• Business Structure and Type of Entity
• How to Share Space
• Types of Bank Accounts Needed
• Credit Card Processing
• Real Estate Issues for Law Firms
• Protecting Your Assets
• Running an Office on a Shoestring Budget – Successfully!

Golden Nuggets: Practice Ideas & Pointers of the last 12 Months
– A Reality CLE Tradition!

Plus: “Open Mike” time for sharing collective wisdom for the good of the cause

Sessions I & II (Select Two)
A. Family Law
B. Wills, Trusts & Estate Planning
C. What Every Law Practice Needs to Know About Labor & Employment Law in Managing its Own Practice and Staff

Sessions III & IV (Select Two)
E. Criminal Law
F. Contracts Drafting, Structure and Analysis
G. Don’t Be Afraid to go to Trial!

Planning Team
Elizabeth A. Justice – Chair
Attorney at Law, Crawfordsville, IN

Rebecca W. Geyer
Rebecca W. Geyer & Associates, PC, Carmel, IN

F. Anthony Paganelli
Paganelli Law Group, Indianapolis, IN

Frederick W. Schultz
Greene & Schultz Trial Lawyers, Bloomington, IN

James J. Bell
Paganelli Law Group, Indianapolis, IN

Ryan H. Cassman
Coots, Henke & Wheeler, P.C., Carmel, IN

Jessie A. Cook
Law Office of Jessie A. Cook, Terre Haute, IN

Kyle C. Gillaspie
Chief Staff Attorney, Indiana Court of Appeals, IN

Betsy K. Greene
Greene & Schultz Trial Lawyers, Bloomington, IN

Hannah Kaufman
Joseph Katz & Korin, PC, Indianapolis, IN

Meghann E. LaBadie
Law Office of Meghann LaBadie, LLC, Highland, IN

Richard A. Mann
Richard A. Mann, P.C., Indianapolis, IN

Jeffrey C. McDermott
Krieg DeVault LLP, Carmel, IN

John E. Moore
Law Offices of John E. Moore, III PLLC, Vero Beach, FL

Lora R. Mount
Voelz Law, LLC, Columbus, IN

Amy K. Nowaczyk
O’Drobinak & Nowaczyk, P.C., Schererville, IN

Kimberly S. Robinson
Law Office of Kimberly S. Robinson, Indianapolis, IN

Frederick W. Schultz
Greene & Schultz Trial Lawyers, Bloomington, IN

David L. Swider
Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, Indianapolis, IN

Paul J. Unger
Affinity Consulting Group, LLC, Columbus, OH

Patrick H. Wanzer, CPA
Wanzer Financial, Indianapolis, IN

14.5 CLE / 4.25 E – Thursday & Friday, May 4-5

– Crowne Plaza Airport Hotel & Conf. Center, Indianapolis, IN




Wanzer Financial


We express our sincerest thanks to the Indiana Bar Foundation
& Wanzer Financial for their support of the Reality CLE program!

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Recent Developments in Employment Law 2016 – Next Tuesday – Dec. 13

* How to Handle Employment Law Ethical Matters
* Drug Testing in the Workplace
* Social Media 2016: Troubling Tweets, Facebook Fumbles,
& YouTube Yahoos that Plague the Workplace

* The New Federal Trade Secrets Act
* Employment Potpourri: Navigating the New FLSA Overtime Rules
& Other Recent Changes Keeping
 Executive Up At Night
* U.S. Supreme Court Employment Law Update
* Equal Pay Act
* Dealing with Workplace Violence

Mark R. Waterfill – Chair
Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Aronoff LLP, Indianapolis

Arend J. Abel
Cohen & Malad, LLP, Indianapolis

Peter S. Beering
Attorney at Law, Indianapolis

Cristina A. Costa
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, Indianapolis

Kathleen A. DeLaney
DeLaney & DeLaney LLC, Indianapolis

Professor Barbara J. Fick
Associate Professor of Law, University of Notre Dame Law School, South Bend

Jan S. Michelsen
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., Indianapolis

Hannesson I. Murphy
Barnes & Thornburg LLP, Indianapolis

Craig W. Wiley
Jackson Lewis P.C., Indianapolis

6 CLE / 1 E – Tuesday, December 13
9:00 A.M.- 4:30 P.M.

– ICLEF Conference Facility, Indianapolis

– Taft Law Office, Indianapolis
– Ice Miller Law Office, Indianapolis
– May Oberfell Lorber Law Office, Mishawaka

– From your home or office computer

– Available statewide after Live Seminar date

ICLEF • Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, Indianapolis, IN

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38th Indiana Law Update, Sept. 20-21: Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Michigan City & Evansville

38th Indiana Law Update, Sept. 20-21: Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Michigan City & Evansville

36th Annual Judge Robert H. Staton Indiana Law Update, Sept. 23-24, 2014: An ICLEF 12 CLE SeminarThe 38th Annual Judge Robert H. Staton Indiana Law UpdateTM program began in 1979 under the Chairmanship of the late Hon. Robert H. Staton. It continues to offer the finest scholarly review of the latest trends, developments and changes in Indiana Law. Offering 12 CLE credits along with 1 ethics credit, it’s an outstanding value for your CLE dollar.

Indiana Law UpdateTM has no duplicate! If you want the very finest Update program, attend on September 20-21, 2016 in the 500 Ballroom of the Indiana Convention Center or at one of the Live Group Webcast locations around the state. You can also watch from the comfort of your home or office with our Live Individual Webcasts of Day 1 & 2.

And This Year at the Indiana Convention Center… FREE WIFI ACCESS!

Hon. Melissa S. May
Judge, Indiana Court of Appeals, Indianapolis, IN

Ethics – Charles M. Kidd & Kevin P. McGoff

Constitutional Law Kenneth J. Falk

State and Federal Tax Update – Richard L. Bartholomew

Family and Juvenile Law – Hon. Vicki L. Carmichael & James A. Reed

Real Estate – Joshua C. Neal

Internet Law – Jessica L. Ballard-Barnett & Anthony J. Rose

Insurance Law – Richard S. Pitts

Torts – Kevin P. Farrell

Evidence: Criminal and Civil – Hon. Robert R. Altice Jr.

Employment Law – Melanie M. Dunajeski

Probate, Wills, Trusts and Elder Law – Todd I. Glass & Randall K. Craig

Business, Contracts and Banking – F. Anthony Paganelli

Criminal Law – Stacy R. Uliana & Jack H. Kenney

Intellectual Property Law – Thomas Q. Henry

Energy, Oil & Gas Law Update – John S. Rowe

Gun Law in Indiana – Guy A. Relford

Bankruptcy Law – Thomas P. Yoder


Tuesday & Wednesday, September 20 & 21, 2016
8:50 A.M. – 4:45 P.M. Eastern (Both Days)

For your convenience this years program will be available
simultaneously in multiple locations across the state:

– Indiana Convention Center, 500 Ballroom,
100 S. Capitol Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46225

– Grand Wayne Center, Fort Wayne
120 W. Jefferson Blvd., Fort Wayne, IN 46802

– Blue Chip Resort & Casino, Michigan City
777 Blue Chip Drive, Michigan City, IN 46360
Program begins at 7:50 A.M. Central Time

– RhineErnst LLP Law Office
One Main Street, Suite 600, Evansville, IN 47708
Program begins at 7:50 A.M. Central Time

DAY 1    – or –    DAY 2
From your home or office computer with internet access

– Available state wide after Live Seminar date


For a Full Agenda, Additional Info or to Register Please, Click Here.

ICLEF • Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, Indianapolis, IN

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Law Tips: Smoking Guns; 3 Ways Technology has Changed Employment Law

Technological advancements such as email and the virtual office have made life easier, for sure! But these conveniences can carry challenges. Certain areas of law, such as employment law, are impacted directly by these changes in the technology arena. Our latest Law Tips participant, Danuta (Donna) Bembenista Panich, of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., Indianapolis, is acutely aware of these effects on the practice of employment law. Ms Panich has been an employment law practitioner for more than 35 years and serves as chair of Ogletree Deakins’ Record Retention and E-Discovery Practice Group. I appreciate her sharing with Law Tips readers background on the “smoking guns” she encounters and the prudent advise she offers employers:

Clearly, the advent of computers and the intemet was technology change of proportions not experienced by anyone who graduated from law school after 1995. But I want to focus here on more recent, incremental changes in technology that have substantively altered employment law, as well as materially affected its practice:

  1. The virtual office
  2. Mobile communications devices
  3. Electronic communication and messaging systems
  4. Social media
  5. Big data (aka centralized databases).

Individually or in combination these advances in technology have affected employment law in at least the six ways discussed here.

I. “Off The Clock” And “Refusal To Accommodate” Claims Are Proliferating.

The virtual office has greatly expanded the ability to work from home and outside regular hours. There are positive effects flowing from the flexibility this creates: flex-time makes employees happier and makes it easier to balance work and family needs. But blurring the lines between workplace and home and on-duty/off-duty time also creates employment issues. The ability to work remotely opens the door to more accommodation claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The requirement to work specific hours from the confines of an office is harder to justify in today’s virtual environment. Similarly, that environment makes it far more difficult to argue against flexibility when requested by a pregnant employee, thus increasing the likelihood of Title VII liability. Prudent employers should carefully consider whether such accommodations are workable, rather than assuming they are not.

Because working from home/outside regular hours is difficult to supervise/control, the virtual office, particularly when coupled with mobile communications devices, can result in some challenging off the clock claims under state and federal wage and hour laws. If an employee checks email, or looks at a work order from a car or home, is that time compensable? And if it is compensable, does it prematurely start or extend the continuous workday?

Employers should be very deliberate in establishing and enforcing policies in order to avoid liability for unintended work time. This is particularly true since date and time stamping of all computer-related activities has provided a ready means of measuring time outside the confines of a time-clock. This ability makes proof of lost time far easier and more accurate. It concurrently increases the burden on the employer who must locate, reserve, and produce the data. In combination, these factors enhance the plaintiff employee’s chance to turn his claim into a class or collective action while also improving his or her settlement posture.

II. The Number Of “Smoking Guns” Have Increased Because We Have Changed The Formality And Frequency With Which We Communicate In Written Form.

People treat email, text messages, tweets and other electronic communications as the equivalent of oral communications. They blurt out whatever comes to mind, pay little attention to whom they direct their communications, and fail to proofread.

Electronic communication has also become a substitute for oral communication. People used to “tell” off-colored jokes to a small well-defined group. Now they broadcast them in written form, for endless redistribution. The result? The number of EEO and retaliation cases continues to grow. Nor is there any diminution in the percentage of cases found meritorious. Given the fact that 50 years of operation under equal opportunity laws must have resulted in less, not more, overt discrimination, one can only conclude that the proliferation of smoking guns has contributed to the seemingly inverse results. Employers should redouble efforts to sensitize employees to these dangers, and might wish to consider new rules on appropriate use of electronic communications.

Poor communication hygiene has also dramatically changed litigation practice. The plaintiff focuses on all forms of electronic communication as the richest potential source of helpful evidence – even if there is no true smoking gun, it is a rare case that does not include problematic or at least embarrassing electronic communications. Defense counsel’s witness preparation takes on a whole new dimension of scouring the record for any potentially harmful remark, and ensuring that the witness is cognizant of, and prepared to explain, all his/her linguistic faux pas. (Plaintiffs preparation should be similarly rigorous.)

III. Metadata and Big Data Create Unprecedented Transparency

Metadata – information about information – sometimes makes guilt or innocence irrefutable. For example, in a retaliation claim, the create date of a document in which the plaintiff’s termination from employment is discussed and agreed upon may prove beyond doubt that the decision was made before a protective activity occurred.

Conversely, metadata reflecting deletion of files, access to files, sending files, or the date of certain communications may prove the violation of a non-compete agreement or the theft of trade secrets.

Big data allows an employer to track every moment of an employee’s workday and every activity of the employee. Performance and productivity can be measured with astonishing precision both in and out of the office. The positive effects in the employment environment are that neither employees nor employers can avoid accountability and subjectivity and selective memory are removed from the decisional process. The negative impacts are greater job stress, less interdependence, trust, and loyalty. From the practitioner’s perspective, the results are more claims, more hard evidence, but less institutional knowledge and client loyalty.

Let’s take a break at this point in Donna Panich’s discussion of issues presented to employment law practitioners by technological change. But stay tuned! In next week’s Law Tips she talks about the alterations in such areas as asymmetrical discovery and the tracking of cross-country incidents.


About our Law Tips faculty participant:
Danuta (Donna) Bembenista Panich, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., Indianapolis, has a varied practice dealing with all aspects of labor and employment law. However, since 1995, she has focused primarily on defending employers – including many of the nation’s largest companies – in class actions, multi-plaintiff and collective actions, pattern and practice claims, and other “bet the company” matters such as investigations of catastrophic industrial accidents. Ms. Panich has dealt extensively with electronic discovery and litigation preparedness. Since she joined Ogletree Deakins in 2007, she established, and has since served, as chair of Ogletree Deakins’ Record Retention and E-Discovery Practice Group.

About our Law Tips blogger:
Nancy Hurley has long-standing connections with Indiana lawyers. She was formerly a member of the ISBA and IBF staffs for over 30 years. Nancy’s latest lifestyle venture is with ICLEF. We are utilizing her exceptional writing and interviewing skills while exploring how her Indiana-lawyer background fits with ICLEF’s needs. When she isn’t ferreting out new topics for Law Tips, her work can be found in our Speaker Spotlight blogs, postings on the ICLEF Facebook and Twitter pages, and other places her legal experience lends itself.

Thank you for reading Law Tips. You may subscribe to this weekly blog through the RSS link at the top of this page.  Also, you are encouraged to comment below or email Nancy. She welcomes your input as she continues to sift through the treasure trove of knowledge of our CLE faculty to share with you.

ICLEF • Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, Indianapolis, IN

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