UTAH SUPREME COURT OFFICIALLY PROPOSES LARGEST REFORMS TO LEGAL PROFESSION IN A GENERATION

The Utah Supreme Court requests comments on its regulatory reform efforts. The comment period is open for 90 days, ending on July 23, 2020. Please see https://sandbox.utcourts.gov/ and the press release for more information.

Supreme Court Standing Order

Standing Order 15: This order would establish a pilot legal regulatory sandbox and an Office of Legal Services Innovation to assist the Utah Supreme Court with respect to overseeing and regulating the practice of law by nontraditional legal service providers or by traditional providers offering nontraditional legal services.

Rules of Professional Conduct

Rules Governing the Professional Independence of Lawyer: The Supreme Court proposes repealing current Rule 5.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct and replacing it with Rules 5.4A and 5.4B.

  • Rule 5.4A: This rule would govern lawyers delivering legal services in the traditional and conventional model. New Rule 5.4A(a) outlines the foremost duties of a lawyer – the duty of independence of judgment, duty of loyalty to the client, and duty of confidentiality – applicable to the rest of the Rule. The preeminence of these professional core values is further explained in new Comments [1] and [2] as they pertain to sharing fees with nonlawyers, with lawyers in a separate firm, and accepting referrals and payments from parties other than the client. In order to loosen the restriction on fee sharing, Rule 5.4A(b) allows a lawyer to share legal fees with a nonlawyer as long as written notice is given at the outset of the representation or before sharing fees from an existing client.
  • Rule 1.5: Paragraph (e) of this rule would be eliminated to allow dividing fees among lawyers who are not in the same firm.
  • Rule 5.4B: This rule would be applicable to lawyers participating in the pilot legal regulatory sandbox. Like proposed Rule 5.4A, the core professional values for lawyers underlying this proposed rule are stated at the outset under subsection (a). Comments [1] and [2] reiterate and clarify the importance of the underlying core values and duties of a lawyer, notwithstanding the novel arrangement with nonlawyers. Proposed Rule 5.4B(b) allows a lawyer to practice law in an organization that is managed or owned, in whole or in part, by nonlawyers, as long as (i) the client is given written notice that nonlawyers have a financial interest in the organization or nonlawyers have managerial authority over the lawyer, and (ii) the client receives in writing the financial or managerial structure of the organization.

Lawyer Advertising Rules: The Supreme Court proposes significantly simplifying the lawyer advertising rules in the Rules of Professional Conduct. Under this proposal, current Rules 7.17.27.37.4, and 7.5 would be repealed and replaced with new Rule 7.1. Notably, this proposal would eliminate the prohibition against in-person solicitation found in current Rule 7.3.

  • Rule 7.1: Would prohibit (i) making false and misleading claims about the lawyer or the lawyer’s services, and (ii) interacting in a way that involves coercion, duress, or harassment.

Drafts for Review

Standing Order 15 (conceptualizing the pilot legal regulatory sandbox and Office of Legal Services Innovation)

Redline Rules 5.4A and 5.4B (showing the changes from current Rule 5.4)

Redline Rule 1.5 (showing the elimination of paragraph (e))

Clean Rules 5.4A and 5.4B (showing the traditional legal services delivery model and the model contemplated in the pilot legal regulatory sandbox)

Redline Rules 7.1 through 7.5 (showing the process of simplifying the lawyer advertising rules)

Clean Rules 7.1 through 7.5 (showing simplified Rule 7.1 and the reservation of Rules 7.2, 7.3, 7.4, and 7.5)

How to Comment 

To comment and to review the comments of others, please click on this link: http://www.utcourts.gov/utc/rules-comment/2020/04/24/supreme-court-regulatory-reform-proposal-comment-period-closes-july-23-2020/.

Bar Announces 2020 Election Results

Notice of Order for Temporary Amendments to Bar Admission Procedures During COVID-19 Outbreak

Read Order

The Utah Supreme Court issues the following Order. This Order modifies the Bar Examination passage requirement on an emergency basis for certain eligible law school graduates and attorneys from other jurisdictions in good standing, based upon the Utah Supreme Court’s constitutionally granted authority to regulate the practice of law in Utah, and in consideration of the public health threat currently posed by the novel infectious coronavirus (COVID-19).

MCLE Compliance Changes

2020 CLE Compliance Reporting Period
On March 12, 2020, the Supreme Court authorized the Supreme Court Board of Continuing Legal Education “the Board” to suspend the traditional live in-person credit requirement for lawyers reporting in 2020, allowing all required CLE to be fulfilled with online self-study with audio or video presentations, webcasts or computer interactive telephonic programs for the compliance period ending June 30, 2020.

On April 13, 2020, due to the ongoing COVID-19 virus, the cancellation of in-person CLE courses, and the uncertainty as to when in-person courses may resume, the Supreme Court authorized the Board to extend compliance deadlines for the compliance period ending June 30, 2020. Lawyers will have through September 1, 2020 to complete required CLE hours without paying late filing fees and will have through September 15, 2020 to file Certificate of Compliance reports without paying late filing fees.

2021 CLE Compliance Reporting Period
On April 13, 2020, the Supreme Court authorized the Board to suspend the traditional live in-person credit requirement for lawyers reporting in 2021, allowing all required CLE to be fulfilled with online self-study with audio or video presentations, webcasts or computer interactive telephonic programs for the compliance period ending June 30, 2021. Please note: The 2020 Compliance Reporting Period Extension does not apply to the 2021 Compliance Reporting Period.

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this announcement, please contact Sydnie Kuhre, MCLE Board Director at sydnie.kuhre@utahbar.org or 801-297-7035.

 

June eBulletin

In this edition: |  Regulatory Reform is Coming–Make Sure You’re Part of the Process | Online Renewal Process Begins June 8 with 90-Day Late Fee Extension  | Bar President Requests Input on Regulatory Reform |  Live CLE Requirement Suspended for 2020 and ’21: Cycles | Lawyer Well-Being: How to Identify with Your Values During Turbulent Times | Holy Cross Ministries Names New Director of Immigration Programs, Senior Attorney | Bar Creates New Online Marketplace to Supplement Beneplace Offerings |

Utah Bar Journal

May / June 2020: In this month’s edition  | President’s Message: Fear, Faith, and Forecasters by Herm Olsen  |  An Introduction to the Utah Judicial Council Justice Court Reform Task Force  |  “To Be or Not to Be?” Your Choice  |  How Mediators Leverage Technology to Overcome COVID-19 Concerns and Keep Cases Settling  |  Appellate Highlights  | and much more!

Well-Being

The Well-Being Committee for the Legal Profession (“WCLP”) is a coalition of lawyers, judges, law school representatives, and mental health and science professionals. Co-chaired by Justice Paige Petersen and attorney Cara Tangaro, the WCLP is committed to improving well-being for Utah’s legal practitioners and to offering information, resources, and actionable, evidence-based recommendations. To learn more and to access these resources, visit the WCLP’s newly launched website.

Utah Implementation Task Force on Regulatory Reform

In the latter part of 2018, the Supreme Court charged Justice Deno Himonas and Former Bar President John Lund with organizing a task force to study and make recommendations to the Court about optimizing the regulatory structure for legal services. Visit the Task Force website to read and comment on the report.

Click HERE to see meeting minutes and agendas.

UTAH SUPREME COURT OFFICIALLY PROPOSES LARGEST REFORMS TO LEGAL PROFESSION IN A GENERATION

The Utah Supreme Court requests comments on its regulatory reform efforts. The comment period is open for 90 days, ending on July 23, 2020. Please see https://sandbox.utcourts.gov/ and the press release for more information.

Supreme Court Standing Order

Standing Order 15: This order would establish a pilot legal regulatory sandbox and an Office of Legal Services Innovation to assist the Utah Supreme Court with respect to overseeing and regulating the practice of law by nontraditional legal service providers or by traditional providers offering nontraditional legal services.

Rules of Professional Conduct

Rules Governing the Professional Independence of Lawyer: The Supreme Court proposes repealing current Rule 5.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct and replacing it with Rules 5.4A and 5.4B.

  • Rule 5.4A: This rule would govern lawyers delivering legal services in the traditional and conventional model. New Rule 5.4A(a) outlines the foremost duties of a lawyer – the duty of independence of judgment, duty of loyalty to the client, and duty of confidentiality – applicable to the rest of the Rule. The preeminence of these professional core values is further explained in new Comments [1] and [2] as they pertain to sharing fees with nonlawyers, with lawyers in a separate firm, and accepting referrals and payments from parties other than the client. In order to loosen the restriction on fee sharing, Rule 5.4A(b) allows a lawyer to share legal fees with a nonlawyer as long as written notice is given at the outset of the representation or before sharing fees from an existing client.
  • Rule 1.5: Paragraph (e) of this rule would be eliminated to allow dividing fees among lawyers who are not in the same firm.
  • Rule 5.4B: This rule would be applicable to lawyers participating in the pilot legal regulatory sandbox. Like proposed Rule 5.4A, the core professional values for lawyers underlying this proposed rule are stated at the outset under subsection (a). Comments [1] and [2] reiterate and clarify the importance of the underlying core values and duties of a lawyer, notwithstanding the novel arrangement with nonlawyers. Proposed Rule 5.4B(b) allows a lawyer to practice law in an organization that is managed or owned, in whole or in part, by nonlawyers, as long as (i) the client is given written notice that nonlawyers have a financial interest in the organization or nonlawyers have managerial authority over the lawyer, and (ii) the client receives in writing the financial or managerial structure of the organization.

Lawyer Advertising Rules: The Supreme Court proposes significantly simplifying the lawyer advertising rules in the Rules of Professional Conduct. Under this proposal, current Rules 7.17.27.37.4, and 7.5 would be repealed and replaced with new Rule 7.1. Notably, this proposal would eliminate the prohibition against in-person solicitation found in current Rule 7.3.

  • Rule 7.1: Would prohibit (i) making false and misleading claims about the lawyer or the lawyer’s services, and (ii) interacting in a way that involves coercion, duress, or harassment.

Drafts for Review

Standing Order 15 (conceptualizing the pilot legal regulatory sandbox and Office of Legal Services Innovation)

Redline Rules 5.4A and 5.4B (showing the changes from current Rule 5.4)

Redline Rule 1.5 (showing the elimination of paragraph (e))

Clean Rules 5.4A and 5.4B (showing the traditional legal services delivery model and the model contemplated in the pilot legal regulatory sandbox)

Redline Rules 7.1 through 7.5 (showing the process of simplifying the lawyer advertising rules)

Clean Rules 7.1 through 7.5 (showing simplified Rule 7.1 and the reservation of Rules 7.2, 7.3, 7.4, and 7.5)

How to Comment 

To comment and to review the comments of others, please click on this link: http://www.utcourts.gov/utc/rules-comment/2020/04/24/supreme-court-regulatory-reform-proposal-comment-period-closes-july-23-2020/.

Bar Announces 2020 Election Results

Notice of Order for Temporary Amendments to Bar Admission Procedures During COVID-19 Outbreak

Read Order

The Utah Supreme Court issues the following Order. This Order modifies the Bar Examination passage requirement on an emergency basis for certain eligible law school graduates and attorneys from other jurisdictions in good standing, based upon the Utah Supreme Court’s constitutionally granted authority to regulate the practice of law in Utah, and in consideration of the public health threat currently posed by the novel infectious coronavirus (COVID-19).

MCLE Compliance Changes

2020 CLE Compliance Reporting Period
On March 12, 2020, the Supreme Court authorized the Supreme Court Board of Continuing Legal Education “the Board” to suspend the traditional live in-person credit requirement for lawyers reporting in 2020, allowing all required CLE to be fulfilled with online self-study with audio or video presentations, webcasts or computer interactive telephonic programs for the compliance period ending June 30, 2020.

On April 13, 2020, due to the ongoing COVID-19 virus, the cancellation of in-person CLE courses, and the uncertainty as to when in-person courses may resume, the Supreme Court authorized the Board to extend compliance deadlines for the compliance period ending June 30, 2020. Lawyers will have through September 1, 2020 to complete required CLE hours without paying late filing fees and will have through September 15, 2020 to file Certificate of Compliance reports without paying late filing fees.

2021 CLE Compliance Reporting Period
On April 13, 2020, the Supreme Court authorized the Board to suspend the traditional live in-person credit requirement for lawyers reporting in 2021, allowing all required CLE to be fulfilled with online self-study with audio or video presentations, webcasts or computer interactive telephonic programs for the compliance period ending June 30, 2021. Please note: The 2020 Compliance Reporting Period Extension does not apply to the 2021 Compliance Reporting Period.

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this announcement, please contact Sydnie Kuhre, MCLE Board Director at sydnie.kuhre@utahbar.org or 801-297-7035.

 

June eBulletin

In this edition: |  Regulatory Reform is Coming–Make Sure You’re Part of the Process | Online Renewal Process Begins June 8 with 90-Day Late Fee Extension  | Bar President Requests Input on Regulatory Reform |  Live CLE Requirement Suspended for 2020 and ’21: Cycles | Lawyer Well-Being: How to Identify with Your Values During Turbulent Times | Holy Cross Ministries Names New Director of Immigration Programs, Senior Attorney | Bar Creates New Online Marketplace to Supplement Beneplace Offerings |

Utah Bar Journal

May / June 2020: In this month’s edition  | President’s Message: Fear, Faith, and Forecasters by Herm Olsen  |  An Introduction to the Utah Judicial Council Justice Court Reform Task Force  |  “To Be or Not to Be?” Your Choice  |  How Mediators Leverage Technology to Overcome COVID-19 Concerns and Keep Cases Settling  |  Appellate Highlights  | and much more!

Well-Being

The Well-Being Committee for the Legal Profession (“WCLP”) is a coalition of lawyers, judges, law school representatives, and mental health and science professionals. Co-chaired by Justice Paige Petersen and attorney Cara Tangaro, the WCLP is committed to improving well-being for Utah’s legal practitioners and to offering information, resources, and actionable, evidence-based recommendations. To learn more and to access these resources, visit the WCLP’s newly launched website.

Utah Implementation Task Force on Regulatory Reform

In the latter part of 2018, the Supreme Court charged Justice Deno Himonas and Former Bar President John Lund with organizing a task force to study and make recommendations to the Court about optimizing the regulatory structure for legal services. Visit the Task Force website to read and comment on the report.

Click HERE to see meeting minutes and agendas.

Practice Portal

Simply log in to your Practice Portal and get things done. Register for CLE, keep your contact information up to date, monitor and complete regulatory requirements, volunteer for public services, and more.

Membership Directory

A master listing of all licensed Utah attorneys both past and current along with license status and contact information.

CLE Schedules

Utah attorneys can log in to review and register for upcoming CLE opportunities.

Well-Being

The Well-Being Committee for the Legal Profession (WCLP) was created in 2019 to advance the recommendations of The Utah Task Force on Lawyer & Judge Well-Being.

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who will benefit from your pro bono services. As you volunteer in your community, you make a substantial impact by simply doing good while reinforcing the idea that this is truly a profession that cares about the community. We have the capacity to unbundle services and take on piece of work. Very manageable, effective pro bono service without having to commit whole life to it.

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