Monday, Aug. 28, 2006
 |  An e-Newsbrief from the Philadelphia Bar Association  | 
Vol. 7, No. 61

Security Fence Plan Condemned by Chancellor

Chancellor Alan M. Feldman has sent a letter to the National Park Service condemning the proposed plan to erect security fences throughout Independence Mall.

"Particularly in Philadelphia, the birthplace of our freedoms and the place where our devotion to the rule of law originated, the notion of fencing off from public view the building where the Declaration of Independence was signed and the Constitution was adopted is a dreadful idea which should be abandoned," Feldman's letter states.

Feldman's letter calls for the National Park Service to take a "fresh look at security" but stresses the necessity to strike a balance between the protection of historic sites and the need for Americans to have access to such national treasures as Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.

"We are concerned that increasing already-formidable security measures will make Independence Square even less accessible to the public. Such an outcome is surely at odds with the importance of these historical shrines, which are icons of our free and open society. We do not need a cure which is worse than the disease," Feldman said on behalf of the Association. Click here for a copy of the letter.

Bench-Bar Hotel Reservation Deadline is Sept. 15

The deadline to receive a guaranteed hotel room rate of $185 on Friday night and $225 on Saturday night for the 2006 Bench-Bar Conference at the Tropicana Casino and Resort in Atlantic City is Friday, Sept. 15.

The 2006 Bench-Bar Conference offers a weekend of top-quality programs and camaraderie, with as many as 7.5 CLE credits available to attendees at the Sept. 29-30 event. Click here to register online.

The theme of the 2006 Bench-Bar Conference is a salute to the movies. "The Greatest Show on Earth" will have 19 different programs to choose from. The Bench-Bar Conference brings together the Philadelphia legal community for continuing legal education seminars and provides an opportunity to foster the working environment between local judges and attorneys. The 2006 Bench-Bar Conference is chaired by Ronald A. Kovler and Laura A. Feldman. More information on the conference is available at

The 2006 Bench-Bar Conference is sponsored by LexisNexis, Thomson West, USI Colburn Insurance Service, Veritext and JAMS.

Bench-Bar Conference Scholarships Available

The 2006 Annual Bench-Bar Conference affords attorneys and judges the opportunity to join together to foster a strong working relationship while also addressing issues of importance to the Philadelphia legal community.

For your donation of $500, a Philadelphia Bar Association member who is an attorney for a governmental or public service agency will have the opportunity to attend the conference free of charge. Your generous donation will pay for one night's stay at The Tropicana, conference fees and CLE credit costs.

The goal is to offer 50 scholarships to these groups with allocation through a lottery. Benefactors will be recognized in conference materials and in Philadelphia Bar Association publications. To donate a scholarship, please contact Conference Co-Chair Laura Feldman at 215-546-2604.

Scholarship winners will be drawn and announced on Wednesday, Sept. 6 during a reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. at Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St., in the 11th Floor Conference Center. To enter the lottery, please submit your name and organization to Areetha Carter at by Thursday, Aug. 31.

Pichini Named O'Connor Awardee; Robinson to Address Bar

Roberta D. Pichini, a former chair of the Women in the Profession Committee, has been selected as the recipient of the Association's 2006 Sandra Day O'Connor Award.

The award presentation will be made during the Association's Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon on Oct. 30, where Mary Robinson, the first woman to serve as president of Ireland and the former United Nations high commissioner for human rights, will deliver the keynote address.

Pichini is a partner with Feldman, Shepherd, Wohlgelernter, Tanner and Weinstock. The Association also will present its Justice William J. Brennan Distinguished Jurist Award at the event. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased online at

Bar Foundation's Hamilton Ball Nov. 4 at 30th St. Station

The Philadelphia Bar Foundation will hold its annual Andrew Hamilton Ball on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 30th Street Station. The theme of this year's gala is "Neighborhoods of Philadelphia." Visit for additional information in the coming weeks.

This black-tie optional event is chaired by Amy Ginensky and Deborah Gross.

Procedural Rules Commmittee Member to Speak Sept. 6

Andrew J. Stern, a member of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court Procedural Rules Committee, will discuss process and administration at the Wednesday, Sept. 6 meeting of the Rules and Procedure Committee.

The meeting beging at 12 p.m. in the 10th Floor Board Room of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $7.50 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

105 Firms Raise $1.4 Million for Legal Services

With the addition of Segal, McCambridge, Singer & Mahoney, Ltd., 105 law firms have pledged more than $1.4 million in support of Chancellor Alan M. Feldman's Raising the Bar Campaign to support legal services.

The 105 law firms, representing more than 4,400 attorneys, have pledged $1,417,970. The Raising the Bar Campaign is a joint effort by the Philadelphia Bar Association and the Philadelphia Bar Foundation to increase funding for Philadelphia public interest law centers.

Each firm made a pledge of at least $300 per attorney in its Philadelphia office, with a number of firms committing to as much as $500. Seventeen of the firms are among the 20 largest as listed in PaLAW 2005. To contribute, contact Maureen Mingey, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Bar Foundation.

Click here for a list of the participating law firms and for more information about the Raising the Bar campaign.

Catherine Carr to Receive Philbrook Award

Catherine C. Carr, executive director of Community Legal Services, will receive the Mary Philbrook Public Interest Award at Rutgers School of Law, Camden, N.J., on Thursday, Sept. 21.

The award is presented by The Women's Law Caucus, The Association for Public Interest Law, The Alumni Association of Rutgers University School of Law - Camden and The Camden County Bar Association. Proceeds of the Mary Philbrook Awards Celebration support public interest lawyering at Rutgers School of Law-Camden, including The Association for Public Interest Law Student Summer Grants, the Domestic Violence Program and the Rutgers Legal Clinics.

The event begins at 6 p.m. at the Rutgers Camden Campus Center in the Main Lounge. Click here for a ticket order form.

Fattah to Discuss Education Funding at Oct. 16 Forum

Congressman Chaka Fattah, a longtime advocate for public education, will be the keynote speaker at an Oct. 16 ChancellorÂ’s Forum "How Pennsylvania School Funding Jeopardizes PhiladelphiaÂ’s Future (And What You Can Do About It)."

The lunchtime meeting, hosted by Chancellor Alan M. Feldman in the 11th floor Conference Center at Bar Association headquarters, is open to the public and begins at 12 p.m. with a free lunch, followed by Fattah's presentation at 12:30 p.m. and then a question-and-answer period.

To register, visit or contact Dawn Burger at 215-238-6367 or by e-mail at

Examination of Medicaid Report Oct. 17

Joseph W. "Chip" Marshall III, a member of the Medicaid Commission selected by Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, will discuss the commission's two-year project and upcoming report in a lunchtime meeting on Tuesday, Oct.17.

The meeting is co-sponsored by the Public Interest Section, the Business Law Section's Health Care Law Committee and the State Civil Litigation Section's Medical-Legal Committee.

The meeting will be held in the 11th floor Conference Center of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. The event, open to all Association members, begins at 12 p.m. with lunch, followed by Marshall's presentation at 12:30 p.m. Lunch is $7.50 and registration is available at or by contacting Dawn Burger at 215-238-6367 or by e-mail at

Universal Life Insurance Now Available to Members

Philadelphia Bar Association members who are actively employed can now take advantage of a new universal life insurance program offered on a Guaranteed Issue basis with benefits of $150,000 Cash Value Life insurance which can supplement existing Term Life Flexible Premium Adjustable Life Insurance with Living Benefits. The program has been endorsed by the Philadelphia Bar Association and is available exclusively to Association members. It is underwritten by Transamerica Occidental Life Insurance Company of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and is made available through USI Colburn.

The policy offers $150,000 to attorney members and $100,000 to law firm employees on a guaranteed issue basis, with absolutely no medical exams required; face amounts up to $300,000 are available on a simplified issue basis. Coverage in lower amounts is also available for spouses and children on a Guaranteed Issue basis.

The product allows both the face amount and the premium to be adjusted over time to meet the needs of the individual and their family. Benefit amounts can be adjusted when risk is higher, for instance, when there are young children in the home; and again when risk is lower, for example, when retirement is approaching. Premium payments can be increased in order to build more cash value, or decreased in times of financial difficulty. The cash value itself can be used as an investment vehicle, to pay for the policy's premium, or to secure a personal loan.

In addition to the face amount and cash value, the policy provides a set of Living Benefits including a Critical Care Rider and a Long Term Care Rider that can assist the member and their family in crisis situations. These riders are also available on a Guaranteed Issue basis as part of the program.

For more information and to apply for coverage, call (732) 335-3353. Limitations and exclusions apply. Refer to your contract for complete details.

Brennan Award Nominations Being Accepted

Nominations are being accepted for the Philadelphia Bar Association's prestigious Justice William J. Brennan Jr. Distinguished Jurist Award. The award will be presented at the Association's October Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon on Oct. 30 at 12 p.m. at the Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue.

The award recognizes a jurist who adheres to the highest ideals of judicial service. Any member of the state or federal bench, whether active or retired, who has made a significant, positive impact on the quality or administration of justice in Philadelphia is eligible for consideration. Examples of accomplishments worthy of nomination include innovations in court administration, implementation of pioneering case management techniques, assumption of a leadership role in areas affecting the administration of justice, publication of a significant opinion, article, or other scholarly work, or the like.

This year's Brennan Award Committee is chaired by Stephanie Resnick. Nominations for the Justice Brennan Distinguished Jurist Award should be forwarded to: Brennan Award, Attn: Areetha Carter, Esq., Staff Counsel, Philadelphia Bar Association, 1101 Market St., 11th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107. All nominations should include the full name, address and telephone number of both the nominee and the person submitting the nomination, a summary of the nominee's accomplishments, and any pertinent supporting material the committee should consider. All nominations must be received no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 8, 2006.

YLD Fall Family Spooktacular at Sesame Place Oct. 22

The Young Lawyers Division will hold its Family Fall Spooktacular on Sunday, Oct. 22 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at Sesame Place in Langhorne, Pa.

Admission is $30 for adults and $20 for children and includes food and beverages, a sing-along and meet and greet with five Sesame Place characters, VIP seating at the live stage show "Countdown to Halloween" and participation in the Sesame Place Rock Around the Block parade.

Children are invited to dress in costume and trick or treat throughout the park, tour The Count's Castle and take a hayride. Click here for directions to Sesame Place.

Legal Directory 2006 Now Available for Purchase

The Legal Directory 2006 is now available. Place your order now for this indispensable resource - and receive free access to The Legal Directory Online.

This year's edition includes listings for more than 1,500 law firms and 17,000 attorneys in Philadelphia and the surrounding Pennsylvania counties, Delaware and New Jersey, in addition to Bar Association contacts and committees; information on federal, state and county courts and government agencies; a judges index; alternative dispute resolution resources; and a special business-to-business section tailored to the legal community.

New for 2006, each copy of The Legal Directory includes complimentary access to The Legal Directory Online. So information will be only a few mouse clicks away and accessible wherever you go. Click here to order The Legal Directory 2006 today!

Discover Discussion Forums at

Discussion Forums are a new member benefit at available free to Section members and members of the Young Lawyers Division. Post a question, get an answer - it's that easy! You can also post replies to questions from other members. Best of all, you're already pre-registered for your Section's Discussion Forum! To get started, just log in to the Association's Web site at Once you log in, you never have to log in again!

Just follow these simple steps:
1) Click "Member Log-in" (upper right corner).
2) Enter your User Name and Password (click "Need Help?" to have them e-mailed to you).
3) Click "Remember Me" to bypass future log ins.
4) On your personalized homepage, click "My Discussion Forums" at the bottom of the page and you're in!

To start taking advantage of the Discussion Forums:
1) Click on the "New Topic" button.
2) Enter a subject in the Subject field.
3) Type your message in the Message body field and hit Submit to post.
4) Your message is viewable only by other members of your Section. To reply to a message, click "Post Reply."

Discussion forums are a quick and easy way to get answers from colleagues on important practice questions. What's more, by personalizing your Profile, you'll receive an e-mail when someone has replied to your posting! And with the "Private Message" button, you can send a personal message to a Forum member at any time!

We invite you to take advantage of this valuable new service today, available exclusively on the Philadelphia Bar Association's Web site. If you have any questions, we're happy to help. Just e-mail Mark Tarasiewicz at, or Brett Schaeffer at Go ahead, post a question today!

Professional Announcements Available in Bar Publications

The Philadelphia Bar Reporter and The Philadelphia Lawyer are excellent resources for any sort of professional announcement by your firm. Tell the legal community of greater Philadelphia about special new hires, associates ascending to partner level, career advancements, special awards and more.

A professional announcement in The Philadelphia Bar Reporter and The Philadelphia Lawyer will be placed in a publication with more than three times the circulation of any other legal publication in Philadelphia!

A professional announcement has tremendous impact and will benefit your firm in the increasingly competitive environment in which we work. Your firm will stand out as a fertile breeding ground for outstanding legal talent when placing a professional announcement.

The individuals recognized in the announcement will have a tangible piece of history that will serve as a keepsake that he/she will never forget. For rates and information, please call Howard Hyatt, senior account manager, at (410) 902-5797 or (800) 466-8721, extension 250.

Prime Rib Golf Outing Sept. 25

The Prime Rib will hold its fifth annual golf outing on Monday, Sept. 25 at Whitemarsh Valley Country Club in Lafayette Hill. Proceeds from the event will benefit the John Mannino Scholarship Fund at the Temple University School of Tourism and Hospitality Management.

The event is sponsored by the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau. For more information, call The Prime Rib at 215-772-1701 or visit

Weekly Spotlight: Regional Housing Legal Services

Regional Housing Legal Services was founded in 1973 in response to the limited availability of affordable housing and economic opportunities for low-income individuals and families in Pennsylvania. Initially, an outgrowth of Bucks County Legal Aid Society, the organization now works statewide. Headquartered in Glenside, RHLS has offices in Harrisburg and Pittsburgh. It currently employs seven full-time attorneys.

RHLS builds more self-reliant communities by working with nonprofit organizations that serve low-income families and individuals through supportive and affordable housing, neighborhood revitalization and economic development programs. Clients range from small start-up community groups to sophisticated organizations like Project H.O.M.E. and People's Emergency Center. Services include:

Direct legal assistance (legal representation and technical assistance in structuring and executing projects, negotiation; drafting contracts; and general nonprofit operations).
Preventive law (planning to prevent legal problems in the future).
Building partnerships (brokering collaborations between nonprofit community-based organizations and other public and private entities to develop low-income housing and related projects that will boost community revitalization).
Policy analysis (identifying critical issues, making policy recommendations and disseminating relevant information to interested parties).

RHLS is a unique resource in the state capable of understanding, linking and bridging multiple issues at many levels to build a solid capacity for undertaking increasingly ambitious projects to address needs at the community level. RHLS selects clients who define housing as more than a physical space in which to dwell, and believe that housing should be considered in the context of the community. Putting this credo into operation means that RHLS works on projects with comprehensive views of community and housing, and actively fosters a network of service providers to promote best practices, build capacity and form collaborations to overcome homelessness and fill service gaps. In this way, RHLS ensures the overall well being of low-income individuals and families.

For more information please call (215) 572-7300 or visit RHLS online at

Tax Credits for Historic Preservation

At PBI's "Tax Credits for Historic Preservation" learn how to unravel the application process; see how the standards for rehabilitation are used; learn the qualifications for taking the credit; focus on how to put the deal together; get tips on using consultants; get answers from IRS; and earn your clients a dollar-for-dollar tax reduction. This 6-substantive credit hour program will be held in Philadelphia on Wednesday, Aug. 30, at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th floor of the Wanamaker Building, Juniper Street entrance (between 13th and Broad Streets, opposite City Hall), from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Registration begins at 8 a.m. For additional information, or to register, click here.

Upcoming CLE

The following courses are cosponsored by the Philadelphia Bar Association and the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. All courses are at The CLE Conference Center in the Wanamaker Building, except as otherwise noted. Registration begins 30 minutes before course start time.

Tuesday, Aug. 29
Scenes From an E-Discovery Case
4 substantive CLE credits
12:30 to 4:45 p.m.

Wednesday, Aug. 30
Tax Credits for Historic Preservation
6 substantive CLE credits
8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Clinical Research Symposium
7 substantive CLE credits
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Thursday, Aug. 31
Ethics Potpourri - Too Great an Expectation: Does Charles Dickens Demand Too Much of Today's Lawyers?
1 ethics CLE credit
8:30 to 9:30 a.m.

Results LLCs, LPs, S Corps and C Corps: Choosing the Best Business Entity for Maximum Results
3 substantive CLE credits
9:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

Ethics Potpourri - PBA Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee Update
Franklin Institute Science Museum
222 N. 20th St., 5th Floor
1 ethics CLE credit
10 to 11 a.m.

Ethics Potpourri - Caught in the Web: Law Firm Web Site & Online Marketing Ethics Issues
1 ethics CLE credit
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Ethics Potpourri - Ethics of Pro Bono Representation
1 ethics CLE credit
1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Ethics Potpourri - Ethics Jeopardy
1 ethics CLE credit
3 to 4 p.m.

Ethics Potpourri - Saving the Impaired Colleague
1 ethics CLE credit
4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

More information is available on the PBI Web site at, on the page devoted to Philadelphia programs, by calling 1-800-247-4724, or by e-mailing Note: some events sell out; before walking in, call PBI to confirm that space is still available for the program that interests you.

Earn up to 4 credits on your computer, at your convenience, at PBI's Online Campus, at More than 300 classes are available, including nearly 50 one-hour ethics programs. 24/7 CLE.

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