Thursday, April 22, 2021

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Equal Justice Under the Law: Not Just Words on a Building

"Equal Justice under law is not merely a caption on the facade of the Supreme Court," U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr. said in a 1976 speech. "It is perhaps the most inspiring ideal of our society. It is one of the ends for which our entire legal system exists." Read Justice Powell's edited excerpt in Spark! 

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Taking Client Confidences on the Road ... But How?

Taking the optimistic view and assuming there will again someday be widespread travel, Wade Davies wondered in his recent column "whether it is possible to travel internationally while fulfilling our ethical responsibilities to clients to preserve confidential information without falling under suspicion of obstruction of justice." Answer: It's complicated. Crossing U.S. borders is not simple for lawyers, but Davies gives some best practices for what lawyers should do to protect client confidences when that happens. Mainly, he writes, "have a plan in place for what to carry and how to best preserve client confidences in the event your electronics are examined or seized."




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Executive Branch Ethics: You Can't Do That, Can You?

Until news reports over the last four years, most American citizens were unaware that a robust and complex corpus of federal laws and regulations exist to prevent conflicts of interest from arising among federal executive branch employees. These were crafted in many cases as a direct congressional response to prior executive branch ethical shortcomings of the Nixon administration. Many persons who deal with federal employees — including lawyers in private practice — do not know that actions and requests that are taken for granted in the business world cannot be engaged in by federal employees — at least, not without negative consequences to themselves and their agencies. Nick Mcall and Jill McCook fill you in, in their article, Getting to Know the Federal Executive Branch Ethics Laws: A Primer, Part I, in the current issue. Part 2 will be out in May.

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TBA Convention to Offer In-Person, Virtual Programs

Make plans now to join your colleagues for the 2021 TBA Annual Convention, presented this year as both an in-person event at The Peabody in Memphis and as a virtual online event the week of June 14. Virtual programming will be available for all registrants on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursday and Friday, virtual only registrants will tune in for a livestream of key Convention events such as the Bench Bar CLE and Luncheon, Lawyers Luncheon, Better This Year CLE program and Legislative Update CLE. During that same time, in-person attendees will experience all that Memphis has to offer, including key programs, a joint social event with state judges, a group breakfast and the delights of Beale Street and beyond. Register today to save your spot! Full Access Registration (including both in-person & virtual access) and Virtual Only Registration are now open. For those attending in person, please note there will be caps on the number of registrations so be sure to make your reservation early, and be sure to read the TBA’s COVID-19 safety acknowledgement, liability waiver and release of claims.

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