Bar Blast – March 21, 2017

March 21, 2017
You are invited to the
2017 West Virginia State Bar Annual Gathering
April 2-3, 2017 | Charleston Marriott
Includes CLE Seminars, Annual Banquet and Reception
Includes CLE Seminars Only
Includes Annual Banquet Only
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2017 Annual Gathering Sponsors

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Opportunity to Sponsor State Bar Annual Gathering
Opportunities exist through March 24th for individual attorneys and/or law firms to sponsor the State Bar Annual Gathering. If you are interested in serving as a sponsor click here. For additional information contact Anita Casey at

The Roadmap to Successful Mediation:  Effective Communication at Every Turn
An Advanced Mediation Training
The ADR Committee will be sponsoring a mediation training with Louise Phipps Senft, a nationally recognized mediator and mediation trainer, and author of the best-seller, Being Relational.  Click Here for Louise Phipps Senft’s Biography. This training will take place on June 28, 2017, at 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at the Bridgeport Conference Center and will qualify for 7.5 hours of CLE.  Join us and learn how to more effectively communicate in mediation, whether as an advocate or as a mediator.  All registrants will receive a complimentary copy of Louise’s book as part of the registration process. The Honorable Michael John Aloi will also present at the training.  Cost for the training is $150.00.  Click Here to Register.  Click Here for the Agenda.  For further information contact Monica at

Increased Security Requirements Coming to 
State Bar Membership Portal
The West Virginia State Bar will be increasing password security requirements from 8 to 12 characters in the near future.  General security standards require people to change their passwords regularly with specific character requirements in order to keep their account as secure as possible. The move is needed to protect the State Bar and its members from the rash of hacks that have occurred to large organizations.   Prior to July 1, each Bar member will be prompted to update his or her password upon login if it does not meet our security requirements.  Additional information will be forthcoming before changes take effect.
Beginning April 1, the State Bar will require anyone calling in to access or change information in the State Bar’s database to have the member’s date of birth and employer name.  If the member is a sole practitioner, the employer name will be the member’s name.  This measure is also intended to increase the security of information contained in the State Bar’s database.

29th Public Interest Advocates Auction
The 29th annual PIA auction will be held on Thursday, March 23 at the WVU College of Law in Morgantown. Dinner is served at 6 p.m. in the law school lobby; it is a buffet and costs $10 per person. The auction will kick off at 7 p.m. in the College of Law Event Hall. The auction is open to the public and FREE to attend. The live auction features sports memorabilia, game tickets, resort getaways, golf packages, jewelry, fine dining, trip packages, and much more!
All money raised goes toward funding summer and full time public interest fellowships for WVU College of Law students. For more information contact Jennifer Powell at the College of Law,

Bar Foundation Fellows Dinner
The 19th Annual Bar Foundation Fellows Dinner will be held on Thursday, April 27, 2017, at the Marriott Hotel in Charleston.
The event (black tie optional) begins at 6:00PM and the cost is $150 per person or $1,500 for a table of ten persons. The majority of the amount is tax deductible and the net proceeds from the Dinner are used for Bar Foundation grants to improve the administration of justice in the state.
Please contact Tom Tinder to make your reservations—(304)-343-9823,
Public Comment

Adoption of Amendment to Rule 23, Class Actions the Rules of Civil Procedure

By order entered on March 8, 2017, the Court approves an amendment to Rule 23 – Class Actions – of the Rules of Civil Procedure to provide for the distribution of residual funds.
Click Here for the Order

Legal Ethics Opinion: L.E.O. 2017 – Public Comment

The Lawyer Disciplinary Board is soliciting public comments on the following Legal Ethics Opinion: L.E.O. 2017-__ entitled “FACT WITNESS COMPENSATION”.
Deadline for submissions: April 7, 2017.
Click Here for More Information

Proposed Amendments to the Rules Governing Guardians Ad Litem in Family Court
The Court has provisionally approved proposed amendments to the rules governing guardians ad litem in family court, and will accept public comment on the amendments through April 10, 2017. The amendments are necessary because guardians ad litem should not routinely be appointed in family court cases. Click Here for the Order
Upcoming Events

April 2-3, 2017
The West Virginia State Bar Annual Conference & Meeting
Location: The Charleston Marriott Town Center – Charleston, WV
CLE: 6.1 credits. including 2 credits in Law Office Management and Substance Abuse
  • Legal Research in the 21st Century – Christina Steinbrecker Jack, Fastcase
  • Reflecting on Environmental Enforcement: The Advent of Mega Cases – John Cruden, Former Assistant Attorney General US Environment and Natural Resources Division
  • An update from the ABA – Linda Klein, President of the American Bar Association
  • Criminal Law – Professor Douglas Berman, Professor – Moritz College of Law, The Ohio State University
  • An Introduction to the New Era of Lawyer Assistance Program – Robert Albury, Jr, Director WV Lawyer Assistance Program
  • A Panel Discussion of Practicing Law in WV from the perspective of Women Attorneys – Judge Stephanie Thacker, United States Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals;Justice Elizabeth Walker, Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia; Cheryle Hall, West Virginia Court of Claims; Dina M. Mohler, Office of General Counsel, Charleston Area Medical Center

April 5, 2017 – 9:30a.m. & 1:30p.m.
Court’s Case Management Electronic Filing System 
(CM/ECF) Training – Clarksburg
Host:  United States District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia
Location: Clarksburg, WV
About: Attorneys and/or staff may attend one class. Attorneys completing the 2 1/2 hour class will earn 3 CLE credits for office management. There is no charge for the classes. Reservations are required, as there is a limit of 12 students per class.

Friday, March 31st, is the last day to make a reservation. Interested parties please contact:  Kim Denny via email:

April 18, 2017 – FREE CLE Webinar!
Avoiding Liability While Helping Their Clients With Their Investments
Sponsor: The West Virginia State Bar State and Federal Tax Committee
CLE: 3.0 General Credits
Location: State Bar Center – Charleston, WV and via Webinar

April 26, 2017
Family Law CLE – National Speakers to Present!
Sponsor: The Kanawha County Family Law Bench Bar Committee
Location: Edgewood Country Club – Charleston, WV

May 19, 2017 – CORRECTED DATE
Mountain State Bar Association Annual Seminar
Sponsor: Mountain State Bar Association Annual Seminar
CLE: 6.0 Credit Hours including 1.0 Ethics/Office Management
Location:  Tamarack – Beckley, WV
Questions? Contact Cheryl Henderson 304-523-5732

June 14-16, 2017
Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia – 35th Annual Meeting
Sponsor: Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia
CLE: 12.30 including 9.90 Ethics
Location: The Resort at Glade Springs

June 28, 2017 – SAVE THE DATE!
The Roadmap to Sucessful Mediation: Effective Communication at Every Turn – An Advanced Mediation Training
Sponsor: The West Virginia State Bar ADR Committee
CLE: 7.5 General Credits

Bridgeport Conference Center

The State Bar has secured a government room rate with the Wingate Hotel on June 27th using code: CGSBAR
For further information please email