The Guardianship Signature Program Invitation


2015_guardianship_logo_lgto help pioneer the newest signature program endorsed by the Board of District Court Judges and the Bar Commission.

The Guardianship Signature Program provides judges with a list of lawyers who are willing to represent respondents in guardianship and conservatorship proceedings. The representation is for free or on a sliding scale if the client’s income qualifies, or for reasonable and necessary attorney fees if the client’s income is more than 300% of the federal poverty guidelines.

To volunteer for this Signature Program, visit:
and select both the Guardianship Signature Program and
the districts where you are willing to accept appointments.

Additional information & a free online training are available on the Utah State Courts website at 


Utah State Bar Warns Citizens of Scam Artist Acting as Attorney

Unsuspecting clients fall victim to fraud.

Mary Ann Lucero / Dipoma courtesy Salt Lake County

Mary Ann Lucero / Dipoma courtesy Salt Lake County

Imagine someone impersonating an attorney helping you obtain proceeds from your spouse’s life insurance policy only to have your “attorney” steal the proceeds.  Envision paying for help with a foreclosure only to lose your home to the person who was purporting to help you.  At least these people retained their freedom; one man in jail lost $850 that his mother paid for legal assistance that never materialized.  These unfortunate victims have one thing in common:  Mary Ann Lucero, also know as Mary Ann Dipoma, who is not an attorney, but operates under the name of Wasatch Legal and Collection Services.

Judging the Judges

ParkCity residents will have the opportunity on Tuesday of voting whether to retain a number of Utah state judges, including Judge Ryan Harris, who serves in Summit, Salt Lake, and Tooele Counties, and presided over the lawsuit between Park City Mountain Resort and Talisker Land Holdings, LLC.  As one recent article in the Park Record suggested [PCMR v. Talisker: the Judge Faces Voters on Election Day], “[if] voters are unhappy with the judge, they could sign a de facto eviction order against Harris on Election Day.”  A clever turn of phrase, but this statement suggests that voters should not vote to retain a judge where they take issue with the outcome in a specific case.  We disagree.  Instead, we urge voters to take a different, more principled approach.

President-Elect Angelina Tsu named to NAPABA Best Under 40 List

Utah State Bar President-elect Angelina Tsu One of the Best Lawyers Under 40

 National Asian Pacific American Bar Association recognizes 21 attorneys in U.S.

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) has selected 21 attorneys to receive the 2014 Best Lawyers Under 40 Award, including Utah State Bar President-elect Angelina Tsu.  The award recognizes talented individuals who have achieved prominence and distinction in their respective fields while demonstrating a strong commitment to the community at relatively early stages in their careers.

Angelina Tsu, who has served on the Utah State Bar Board of Commissioners since 2010, was sworn in as president-elect in July.  She co-chaired the Bar’s Committee for Civics Education and served as President of the Young Lawyers Division.  She currently serves on the Boards of Women Lawyers of Utah, the Association of Corporate Counsel (Mountain West Division), and the Utah Minority Bar Foundation.  She is a member of the Merit Selection Panel, which is the judicial nominating commission for Federal Magistrate Judges.

2014 Constitution Day Reflections

“An attorney’s work must be pretty cool.”
–Reflections of a fourth-grader on Constitution Day.

This fourth-grader’s perspective on being an attorney resulted from the Constitution

2014 Constitution Day Cinderella Testifies

Cinderella Testifies

Teach-in by 200 judges, lawyers, law students, and law school staff in celebration of the 225th anniversary of the U. S. Constitution.  The volunteer instructors taught 300 classes throughout Utah on and around Constitution Day, September 17.

This was the third year of the teach-in sponsored by the

The Glass Slipper

The Glass Slipper

Bar’s Civics Education Committee.  Co-chair Benson Hathaway said, “We are so pleased that the number of volunteers increased by one-third and that they taught half again as many classes as last year.  We’re looking forward to our biggest year yet in 2015, the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta—the world’s most enduring symbol of the rule of law.”

New Leadership at Utah State Bar includes President James D. Gilson

“Lawyers are the oil in our economic machine; we keep society humming.”


Justice Lee Swears In President Gilson

More than 300 judges and attorneys of the Utah State Bar assembled last week for its annual summer convention, where—in addition to reports from the judiciary, keynote speakers, continuing legal education sessions—new leaders for the Bar were sworn in by Utah Supreme Court Justice Thomas R. Lee.

James D. Gilson, who has served on the Board of Bar Commissioners since 2008, was sworn in as president.  For the Utah Supreme Court, he served as Co-Chair of the Committee on New Lawyer Training and was a screening panel member of the Ethics and Discipline Committee.  He also served as President of the Utah Chapter of the Federal Bar Association.

Martin Blaustein Recognition

National Legal Aid and Defender Association intends to highlight and profile all of the praiseworthy nominees for the Beacon of Justice Award in upcoming newsletters and materials, including Martin Blaustein.

Martin Blaustein has devoted his career to enhancing the dignity and quality of life for those less fortunate. Prior to obtaining a law degree, and after his service in the Vietnam War, Marty worked for the Odyssey House expanding mental health services for patients in both New York and then Utah. After his time with the Odyssey House, he assisted Veterans who suffered from PTSD, at the time not a recognized diagnosis, get benefits and services. Marty has now been at Utah Legal Services for over 25 years. He is the most self effacing, humble and hard working attorney I know. He quietly goes about zealously representing clients, giving them a voice and making equal access to justice a reality for Utah’s poor. He is committed to his work and has tirelessly strived to bring his vision of equality for all to the legal profession. Through his advocacy, his pro bono services, his mentoring and teaching, and his outreach to the larger community Marty Blaustein has made an impact on literally thousands of lives.

Callister Nebeker & McCullough Receives NLADA Beacon of Justice Award

Congratulations to Callister Nebeker & McCullough for receiving a National Legal Aid and Defender Association (NLADA) 2014 Beacon of Justice Award for its Debt Collection Volunteer Attorney Program.  Watch for an article about it in the July/August Utah Bar Journal


Callister Nebeker & McCullough truly exemplifies a firm that supports its attorneys in giving back to the community. Whether it is allowing attorneys to be part of the Bar’s governing bodies; encouraging attorneys to sit on committees for the purpose of creating greater access to justice; taking part in a firm pro bono signature project; or taking on pro bono cases; the firm truly desires to better their community through their expertise.

11th Annual Fall Forum in Salt Lake City November 14-15

Contact: Sean Toomey, Communications Director, Utah State Bar,
645 South 200 East, SLC UT 84111, 801-297-7059,

Utah State Bar Holds 11th Annual Fall Forum in Salt Lake City
Utah lawyers gather for annual convention November 14-15

Attorneys of the Utah State Bar are gathering for the 11th Annual Fall Forum, featuring keynote speakers and breakout sessions at the Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City on November 14 and 15.

The Utah State Bar was established in 1931 and regulates the practice of law under the authority of the Utah Supreme Court. Bar functions include administering the Bar exam, staffing the Office of Professional Conduct, and offering continuing legal education. Attorneys in Utah are required every two years to experience 24 hours of continuing legal education, including at least three hours of accredited ethics, with one of the three in professionalism and civility. At the Fall Forum, attorneys can obtain 7 CLE credit hours in one day (and an additional one the evening before). Bar President Curtis Jensen said, “Of our three annual conventions, this is the only one in Salt Lake City, and we look forward to getting a chance to learn and interact with our capital city lawyers.”

Results of Special Commission Election for 3rd Division

commissioner_macanas_janiseThe Utah State Bar Board of Bar Commissioners and the Utah State Bar would like to congratulate Ms. Janise Macanas on her election as the new Commissioner for the 3rd Division which represents Tooele, Salt Lake, and Summit Counties. Ms. Macanas will be filling the vacancy left by Mr. James D. Gilson after his election to President-Elect of the Utah State Bar.

The Utah State Bar Board of Bar Commissioners extends its deepest gratitude to all the candidates for their willingness to volunteer and serve the profession and the people of Utah.

Young Lawyers Division Receives ABA and ABE Awards

Utah State Bar Young Lawyers Division Receives ABA and ABE Awards

Help RISE pro bono project garners two public service awards.


            At its annual meeting, the American Bar Association recognized the Utah State Bar Young Lawyers Division for its Help RISE project with a First Place Award of Achievement for Outstanding Activities & Accomplishments in the Service to the Public category.  The project also received an Outstanding Public Service Project Award from the American Bar Endowment—an award given to only one service project a year.

            Help RISE is a new pro bono program (donated legal services) to assist participants in the United States District Court for the District of Utah’s drug and mental health court reentry program:  Reentry Independence through Sustainable Efforts (RISE).  The RISE program assists Federal defendants on supervised release/probation who struggle with drug addiction or mental health issues.  The program reintegrates them into the community using a collaborative rather than a punitive approach.

Summer Classes Scheduled for Divorce Education For Children Program

June 27, 2013
Contact: Nancy Volmer
(801) 578-3994
Cell: (801) 712-4545


Salt Lake City, UT – Nearly 12,000 Utah children are impacted by divorce each year, including more than 5,000 children in Salt Lake County. To address the needs of these children, the Utah State Courts offers a free Divorce Education for Children class twice each month. Classes take place on Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon and Monday from 6 to 8 p.m. Following are the dates for upcoming classes: July 8, August 5 and 24, September 9 and 28, 2013.

The Divorce Education for Children class is for children 9- to 12-years-old whose parents have filed for divorce or whose parents are divorced. The class takes place at the Scott M. Matheson Courthouse at 450 South State Street. Advance registration is required by calling (801) 578-3897 or e-mail There is no charge to attend the class.

Utah State Bar’s New Lawyer Training Program Wins Gambrell Professionalism Award

Press Release

June 17, 2013

The Utah State Bar’s New Lawyer Training Program has received the 2013 Gambrell Professionalism Award from the American Bar Association.

“This is a tremendous honor and is evidence of the great work being done by the bar staff, new lawyer training program committees, and the court’s committee on professionalism,” said Utah State Bar President Lori Nelson. “We salute them for their vision, determination, and extensive work to make this program a success.”

The goal of the program is to train lawyers during their first year of practice in acquiring the practical skills and judgment necessary to practice in a highly competent and ethical manner.



Heber City, UT—A panel of judges is scheduled to meet on Oct. 11, 2012, to hear testimony to determine if reasonable cause exists to call a grand jury. The meeting will take place in the Fourth Judicial District, Heber City Courthouse, 1361 South Highway 40.
Those wanting to testify before the panel of judges should contact District Court Administrator Debra Moore at (801) 578-3800 by Sept. 28, 2012, to schedule an appointment. If no appointments are scheduled by Sept. 28, the meeting will be canceled without further notice.
Individuals testifying must be prepared to give evidence to support claims that justify calling a grand jury. Controversies between individual parties will not be considered. Individuals who need special accommodations during the hearing must notify the court at least three business days prior to the hearing.