News

TBA to Introduce Legal Document Generation

The TBA will soon launch a new subscription-based product for Tennessee lawyers — automated legal forms. The initiative will use HotDocs, a custom documentation generator that creates form templates and speeds up the preparation process based on client and case data. In order to provide this valuable resource to our members, we hope to obtain your comments and ideas on forms you deem beneficial for replication. With across-the-board participation, we can comprise a substantive, comprehensive database where subscribers will have access to forms submitted by all TBA sections. Please send suggestions and comments to TBA Membership Director Mindy Fulks.

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Law Firms Report Strong Financial Results for 2018

Law firms saw higher demand, better billing rates and improved productivity in 2018, according to studies released this week by Thomson Reuters and Citi Private Bank’s law firm group. The ABA Journal reports that this strong performance also resulted in growth in net income and profits per equity partner at the highest level in a decade.

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Intellectual Property Forum Set for May 10

Plan to Attend!

The Intellectual Property Forum is set for Friday, May 10 at the Tennessee Bar Center in Nashville.  

The program will be blast style, allowing attendees the flexibility to create their own schedule. 

Sessions and speakers will be addressing a wide-variety of IP topics. Specific details are coming soon ...

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Cicayda’s Reprise Platform Boasts Advanced e-Discovery Production Speeds

Nashville-based Cicayda announced last week new production capabilities for its cloud-based eDiscovery platform, Reprise. Production time is often one the most stressful events in the eDiscovery process, but Cicayda says that Reprise is now able to deliver production speeds in excess of 2.4 million documents in less than 24 hours. This feature has no additional costs.  Read more about Reprise's specs in this Law Firm Newswire press release.

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Register Now! International Law Forum on Feb. 22

 
Stay on track earning your CLE credits by attending the International Law Forum on Feb. 22 at the Tennessee Bar Center in Nashville. Early bird registration ends tomorrow, Feb. 16!
 
This program is applicable to a wide variety of practice areas, including business law, corporate counsel, employment law, law tech and immigration. Three international business panels make up this afternoon program and include a stacked line-up of speakers. Topics to be discussed include Government & Private International Manufacturing Perspectives, International Sourcing, Importing & Exporting Perspectives and International Entertainment & Tourism Perspectives.
 
Join us for an evening reception immediately following the program for a chance to network with attendees and speakers. Read more about the panels and register for the program here.
 
Unable to attend the live course? Join us virtually for the live webcast!

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Meditation Apps Help Incorporate Mindfulness Each Day

Consider a meditation app for your phone to help incorporate mindfulness into your day. The accessibility and variety of meditation apps can make them beneficial and easy to try. Some, such as Mindbody, Stop, Breathe & Think, 10% Happier, Breethe, Omvana, Insight Timer, Sattva Meditations & Mantras, and Smiling Mind (which can be tailored to different age groups) are free. Others, such as Calm, Headspace, and the Mindfulness App, have free trials and can be upgraded to a paid subscription. Comparisons of various apps are available on www.healthline.com or www.bestproducts.com.
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Will AI Technology be the Next Disrupter in the Legal World?

There is a growing prevalence of AI (artificial intelligence) technology being utilized in the legal sector, Crain’s Cleveland Business reports. Some fear that this technology will replace attorneys with computers. However, the Cleveland office of Baker Hostetler experienced an increase in lawyers a couple of years following the partnership of its bankruptcy practice and IBM’s ROSS intelligence. This technology was able to divert mundane and tedious tasks from the attorneys, such as legal research and case law analysis. Baker’s bankruptcy practice is using the AI technology to track case law and make predictions on the outcome of current cases. While Baker is open to partnering with various legal tech companies, the American Bar Association’s 2018 legal tech survey only found that 10 percent of attorneys polled utilized AI technology in some way. In addition to firms incorporating new technology, Cleveland-based law school Case Western University is also exploring ways to slowly incorporate programming, AI and blockchain technology into its curriculum in order to stay ahead of the disruptive curve.

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Legal Tech Sets Investment Record for 2018

This Forbes article analyzes the investment record that the legal tech industry set in 2018. In 2017, $233 million was invested while 2018 saw a 713 percent increase, carrying a total price tag of $1,663 million. The article partially credits the increase to the electronic service eDiscovery since it has become more relevant for U.S. attorneys. Legal research is another leading branch of legal tech that numerous companies utilize. The legal tech companies that received the largest investments in 2018 were DocuSign, LegalZoom, Exterro, Atrium and Kira Systems.  

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More than 50 Percent of Law Firms Offer Flexible Work Arrangements

A new report shows that more than half of law firms in 2018 offered flexible work arrangements, The ABA Journal reports. Legal services provider Special Counsel produced the report, called the 2019 Salary Guide for Legal Professionals. Respondents also reported that 49.6 percent of firms offered paid maternity and paternity leave, 19.6 offered paid volunteer time and 13 percent provided on-site emergency child care.
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Law Technology Blast 2019

Discover the newest technology for your law practice and law office at this year's Law Tech Blast on Feb. 15 in Nashville! This is a free program available to all practicing lawyers. The flexible open house format allows you to create your own schedule. You can attend CLE sessions, enter to win prizes, network with attendees, visit with sponsors and interact with speakers. Take as many or as few CLE hours as you need.
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Tennessee AG Joins Settlement with Neiman Marcus Over Data Breach

Following a 2013 database breach, Neiman Marcus Group LLC has agreed to pay a $1.5 million settlement to resolve an investigation with 43 states and the District of Columbia, including Tennessee. According to a release from Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery, of the 370,000 payment cards that were compromised in the breach, 1,896 were determined to be associated with Tennessee consumers. Tennessee’s share of the settlement funds is $28,659.04.
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Blog Reviews Most Important Legal Tech Developments in 2018

LawSitesBlog.com has published a roundup of the 20 most important legal tech developments in the past year, eschewing the traditional Top 10 list due to the overwhelming number of significant changes. Included on the list were analytics becoming an essential part of the legal practice, investments in legal tech topping $1 billion, the end of Avvo and the new American Bar Association rule emphasizing the duty of lawyers to be up-to-date on legal technology.
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Lawsuit Claims Baker Donelson, Butler Snow Share Responsibility in Ponzi Scheme

The court-appointed receiver for the estates of confessed Ponzi schemer Arthur Lamar Adams and his disgraced company, Madison Timber Properties, has sued Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz and Butler Snow for allegedly abetting or turning a blind eye to Adams’ $100 million scheme, Law.com reports. Receiver Alysson Mills argues responsibility for the scheme extends far beyond one individual, claiming that individuals at the firms ignored red flags and even abetted the scam. Both law firms issued statements adamantly denying the allegations against them and promising to vigorously defend themselves in the suit.
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Regular Memphis Pro Bono Clinic Has Served 12K Since Inception

Since its beginnings over a decade ago, a Memphis-area pro bono legal clinic has gone on to serve roughly 12,000 individuals in need, The Daily Memphian reports. The Saturday Legal Clinic, sponsored by Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS) and the Memphis Bar Association, has been held at the Benjamin L. Hooks Library once a month since November 2006. Firms and associations work to promote the event to ensure that 30 to 40 attorneys attend each month.
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Baker Donelson Cancels Plans to Move Office to New Tower

Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell and Berkowitz has nixed plans to take a new Nashville office space in a planned mixed-use building One KVB Circle tower, The Nashville Post reports. The firm was to have leased 91,900 square feet of the 450,000-square-foot future tower. They are now seeking an alternative future office space.
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Law Tech Webcast: The Bill and Phil Tech Show 2018

To be more efficient, effective and successful — sounds like a New Year's resolution. Join attorney Bill Ramsey and legal technologist Phil Hampton as they share a broad overview of the latest tech gadgets, apps, tools and tips for attorneys. From the latest on mobile devices to the latest litigation tech tools, Bill and Phil show how legal professionals can use technology to be more efficient, effective and successful in practice. Earn up to 1.5 dual (online) CLE hours

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Court Solicits Comments on Rule Change for Professional Privilege Tax Payments

The Tennessee Supreme Court is soliciting comments on a proposed rule change that would make delinquent professional privilege tax fees payable via an online portal and remove the requirement of a Privilege Tax Delinquency Notice to be sent via mail, requiring only an email notice. The deadline for submitting written comments is Feb. 4. Written comments may be emailed to appellatecourtclerk@tncourts.gov or mailed to James M. Hivner, Clerk, Re: Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 9, section 26 Tennessee Appellate Courts, 100 Supreme Court Building, 401 7th Avenue North, Nashville, Tennessee 37219-1407.
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Join Us Today: LAW TECH

Today's the day! Discover the newest technology for your law practice and law office at this year's Law Tech Blast at the Tennessee Bar Center in Nashville!

The flexible open house format allows you to create your own schedule. You can attend CLE sessions, enter to win prizes, network with attendees, visit with sponsors and interact with speakers. Take as many or as few CLE hours as you need. Only those seeking to be awarded CLE Credit will be charged. The registration desk will be open all day, so you can come and go for the hours you need when it is convenient for you. Attendees can earn up to 6.5 hours of Dual CLE credit.

CLE TOPICS:
  • GDPR, Cloud and Technological Competency
  • The Bill and Phil Tech Show 2019: BEAT THE CLOCK
  • Best Practices: Information Security for Firms
  • Judicial Panel: Technology in the Courtroom
  • Know When to Hold 'Em
  • Digital Evidence – A Technical Life Raft for the Legal Mind
  • Make it Rain: Ethics Guidelines and Practice Essentials

ATTEND TO WIN: Attendees will have a chance to win prizes, including an iPad Pro. The tech prize drawing will be held at the 10:30 a.m. break. Must be present to win.

TAKE A LYFT: TBA has partnered with Lyft to offer attendees a discounted ride.

  • New to Lyft?: Get $5 off 2 rides at http://lyft.com/i/lawtech5 or download the app and enter code LAWTECH5
  • Already Have Lyft?: Save 10% off 2 rides to or from Law Tech Blast with code LAWTECH

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS & EXHIBITORS:


 

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ABA Journal: New ABA Techreport Shows Slight Decrease in Firms that Budget for Technology

Survey data from the ABA Techreport 2018 reveals that the percentage of firms that budget for technology has slightly decreased, ABA Journal reports. The report, released last Wednesday, uses data from the annual Legal Technology Survey Report. It found 57 percent of responding lawyers and firms budget for technology, as opposed to 60 percent last year. The data showed that the percentage of firms that budget for technology increases with a firm’s size: 34 percent of solo respondents, 53 percent of firms of two to nine attorneys, 77 percent of firms of 10 to 49 attorneys, 83 percent of firms with 100 to 499 attorneys, and 87 percent of firms of 500 or more attorneys had technology budgets.    

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Thomson Reuters Announces Major Workforce Cuts

Thomson Reuters recently announced plans to reduce its workforce by 3,200 and close 30 percent of its offices by the end of 2020, Law Sites reports. Co-COO Neil Masterson said the reduction won't impact the “go-to-market capacity" of the company, which is the dominant provider of research and information services for the legal profession.
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Give the Gift of TBA Membership

Give yourself (or a friend) the gift that keeps giving — one-year of unlimited access to professional development opportunities and a number of programs and services designed to help you become a better practitioner. Founded in 1881, the Tennessee Bar Association is dedicated to enhancing fellowship among members of the state's legal community. Oh, and did we mention some of the benefits? Earn three pre-paid credits to use on any live or online course featured in the 12-days of CLE. Join now!

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Reports Show Firms Posting Decade-High Revenue Growth for 2018

Two new reports show law firms posted gains during the first three quarters this year that are the best in about a decade, The ABA Journal reports. The nation’s top 50 law firms outperformed other law firms, according to both reports, which were compiled by Wells Fargo Private Bank’s Legal Specialty Group and Citi Private Bank’s Law Firm Group. According to Wells Fargo, revenue increased 8.2 percent at the 50 top firms. Revenue growth was 5.7 percent at law firms ranked 51 to 100 and 2.3 percent for firms ranked 101 to 200. Niche firms outside the top 200 firms also performed well, with demand growing an average of 2.5 percent. The reports did also note a few negatives — the collection cycle has lengthened and law firm costs have risen.
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Legal Jobs Down Slightly from 2017

According to a report released earlier this month by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the legal services sector saw a slight decline in jobs for November, down 2,400 from the October total of 1,138,100 and down 100 from November 2017. In addition to lawyers, jobs in the legal services sector include secretaries, paralegals and other law-related workers. Read more about the report on The American Lawyer.

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N.C. Becomes 2nd State to Require Tech CLE

North Carolina has become the second state to mandate continuing education for lawyers in technology, Law SItes reports. Beginning in 2019, all lawyers will be required to complete one hour per year of CLE devoted to technology training. In 2016, Florida became the first state to mandate technology training for lawyers, when it adopted a rule requiring lawyers to complete three hours of CLE every three years “in approved technology programs.”
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Marriott Customers Exposed in Data Breach; Tennessee AG Voices Concern

Marriott confirmed today that customers who stayed at a Starwood hotel in the past four years may have had personal information exposed in a data breach, USA Today reports. The breach potentially involves the information of as many as 500 million guests. Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery issued a statement expressing concern, saying that his office is currently looking into the incident.
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