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Webinar: Ethics of Lawyering in a Digital Age

Thursday, February 16, 2017, 12 noon - 1 p.m.

This program offers 1 hour participatory MCLE credit in Legal Ethics. You must register in advance to participate.

Wondering about the ethics of advertising through social media or the recent opinion on blogging? Worried about sending confidential information to clients through email, texts or file sharing programs?  What is metadata and how do you produce it? Do rules of civility apply to quick emails? Join us for an interesting and informative overview of the ethical challenges of operating your law practice in this digital age.

Speakers: Robert Hawn, Raffi Zerounian and William Kellerman 

Exclusive Interview with Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, Executive Director of the State Bar of California

Elizabeth ParkerIn an interview conducted by BLS eNews, Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, the Executive Director of the State Bar of California, discusses her views on the impending separation of the voluntary Sections from the State Bar.  The interview was conducted by Uzzi O. Raanan, of Danning, Gill, Diamond & Kollitz, LLP, in Los Angeles, and Jennifer Duncan, General Counsel, ResortCom International, LLC. READ MORE.

Report on the Sections’ Journey to Find a New Home

Robert HarrisOver the course of the last 14 months we’ve reported periodically on the potential exit of the voluntary Sections from under the umbrella of the State Bar into another form of organization.  Recent developments tell us that it is certain that separation will occur.  Given the situation, the Business Law Section’s leaders and those of its sister Sections are working diligently to free the Sections from the growing restrictions and obstacles that have limited their ability to provide services to members while the best of what the Sections are and do is retained. READ MORE

Consumer Financial Services Committee and Financial Institutions Committee Host Data Privacy Workshop

The Consumer Financial Services Committee and Financial Institutions Committees of the Business Law Section of the California State Bar joined forces to host a workshop on one of the most pressing issues facing the financial services industry: Data Privacy in Financial Services. READ MORE

BLS Attorney Spotlight: Lauren Layne

Lauren LayneLauren D. Layne is now a Shareholder at Baker Manock & Jensen, PC in Fresno.  Lauren chairs the firm's Reclamation and Water Law and Public Agency practice groups. Her law practice focuses on general water and environmental law, including CEQA and NEPA compliance, and includes various business transactional matters in the areas of flood control, water and irrigation districts, public agencies, agribusiness, and real estate. READ MORE

Franchise Law Committee’s Case Update: Victory for Franchisors: Pennsylvania Supreme Court Dismisses an Appeal Attempting to Hold Franchisor Liable for Franchisee’s Employee Workers’ Compensation Claim

The franchise business model, which traditionally seeks to separate the liability between franchisors and their franchisees’ employees, has been threatened under recent labor and employment lawsuits and decisions that seek to make the franchisor liable to franchisees’ employee claims.  Although this significant issue in franchising and employment law is far from settled, this Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision is a victory for franchisors trying to protect themselves from vicarious liability in their respective franchise systems.  Furthermore, this case is instructive for franchisors to ensure that their franchisees maintain workers’ compensation insurance, and other insurance, as required under most franchise agreements. READ MORE

Selected Developments in Business Law — Forming and Operating California Limited Liability Companies

Courtesy of CEB, we are bringing you selected legal developments in areas of California business law that are covered by CEB’s publications. This month’s feature is from the December 2016 update to Forming and Operating California Limited Liability Companies. References are to the book’s section numbers. See CEB’s BLS Landing Page for special discounts for Business Law Section members. The most significant legal developments affecting trade secrets practice in California since the last update include developments in such important practice areas as the new IRS partnership audit and adjustment rules, AB 1722, employment tax issues, jurisdiction of Delaware courts, new California Secretary of State forms, crowdfunding, LLC dissolutions, and more. READ MORE

February Equals Farm Bureau!

On February 3, 2017, the Agribusiness Law Committee will be Hosting its Annual California Farm Bureau Federation Ag Issues Update Meeting. READ MORE

Nonprofit Organizations Law Committee Announces Federal Trade Commission’s Compiling of Information on Charitable Giving in Preparation of March 2017 Conference in Washington D.C.

The Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s consumer protection agency, and the National Association of State Charities Officials, the association of state offices charged with overseeing charitable organizations and solicitations, will hold a conference exploring consumer protection issues and charitable solicitations on March 21, 2017, in Washington D.C. The conference is free and open to the public. READ MORE

Corporations Law Committee Update

The Corporations Law Committee is actively engaged in a number of important matters. READ MORE

Partnerships and LLCs Law Committee Update: Committee postpones February 3, 2017 Program

The PLLC Law Committee has postponed the program it originally scheduled for February 3, 2017. A new date will be announced soon. READ MORE

Health Law Committee Plans Spring Forum with USD

The Health Law Committee has begun reaching out to California law schools to foster relationships between law students and the State Bar Association, and to promote health law as a practice. READ MORE

Commercial Transactions Law Committee Plans Spring Webinars

The Commercial Transactions Law Committee (formerly known as the UCC Committee) is concerned with the documentation and enforcement of a wide range of commercial agreements, including those involving sales of goods, security interests and lien priorities in the full ranger personal property. Also within the Committee’s purview are the law of negotiable instruments such as promissory notes and documents of title and letters of credit. The purview of the Committee intersects with other areas of law including insolvency law and business litigation. READ MORE

Consumer Financial Services and Business Litigation Committees Plan June Program at UCI

Mark your calendar! The Consumer Financial Services and Business Litigation Committees will host a joint program on June 20, 2017, from noon to 3:00 p.m. at the University of California, Irvine School of Law. READ MORE

FIC and CFSC Hold After-the-Holiday Party

On January 19, 2017, Lamb & Kawakami LLP hosted an LA area after-the-holiday holiday party for the Financial Institutions Committee and Consumer Financial Services Committee. READ MORE

CEB Offers Discounts to BLS Members

CEB is currently offering discounts to BLS Members, including 10% off the price of a wide selection of CEB print and OnLAW publications as well as savings on section dues.  For more information on these and other CEB discounts, click HERE. 

Reach a State-Wide Audience by Publishing in the Business Law News

The Business Law News (BLN) is seeking articles of general interest to business law practitioners for its next publication.  With approximately 8,200 members, the BLS has a wide-ranging audience.  The BLN is not only circulated to BLS members in print every quarter, it is also available to BLS members on the internet at  Please submit your articles to the new editor-in-chief, Kenneth Minesinger (  READ MORE

Keep Up With Current Legal Developments by Receiving eBulletins Specifically Tailored for Your Field

The 15 BLS Standing Committees publish eBulletins announcing developments in their area of law and upcoming events open to BLS members. Click HERE to sign up to receive these eBulletins from any BLS Standing Committee completely free of charge

Showcase Your Knowledge:  Follow the BLS on Social Media and Contribute to Discussions

We all know that social media can help drive new business.  Did you know that the BLS maintains a presence on LinkedIn,  Twitter, and Facebook where it posts regular updates about new cases, new regulations, key legislative developments, and news and events from the BLS's Standing Committees?  What you may not know is that you can not only send items to the BLS to post or tweet, but also suggest items from your own social media pages for the BLS to re-post, re-tweet, or like.  Doing so expands the reach of what you have to say to everyone who likes or follows the BLS on its various social media platforms, and may result in the BLS following you!  Please submit your suggested items for consideration or direct any questions to BLS Social Media Coordinator, Dennis J. Wickham (; BLS Vice-Chair of Member Services, Uzzi O. Raanan (; or BLS Chair, James P. Hill (, and join the ever expanding discussion!

Amplify Your Professional Reputation by Joining a Standing Committee

Standing Committees continue to accept applications to fill vacant seats.  Practitioners and other legal professionals who are members of the BLS and who have at least five years of experience are eligible to apply.  Membership on a committee affords unique opportunities to participate in the creation of law in your practice area, to get to know and be known by other practitioners, to work with the recognized leaders in your field, and to stay on the cutting edge of developments and practice techniques.  Membership is a rewarding experience that keeps one ahead of, and in touch with, business law developments.  Most committees meet once a month, often by phone.  A full list of the Standing Committee meeting dates for January are listed below.  A description of the required commitment and application process, along with a link to the application, can be found HERE.

Attend a Standing Committee Meeting and Participate in Your BLS

The BLS achieves its goals through the work of its 15 Standing Committees.  You are invited to attend the regular monthly meeting of any BLS Standing Committees (see below for meeting dates).  These monthly meetings provide attendees an excellent opportunity to chat with committee members and other lawyers with a similar expertise.  Some committees even offer free MCLE credit!  Please see the contact person listed below to RSVP or request more information.  Follow us on Twitter @calbarbuslaw.  Use a Standing Committee's hashtag to search for tweets by that committee in its designated field and to re-tweet.

Standing Committee Meeting Dates for February

For a list of upcoming meeting dates and contact persons, see Standing Committee Meetings HERE.

Thank You for Being a Section Member - Here's 6 Hours MCLE in Legal Ethics!

We're very grateful for your membership in the Section. As a token of that, we're offering six hours of self-study MCLE credit in the area of Legal Ethics. The programs are posted in our Member's Only Area.

Simply watch the programs and read the accompanying materials, and keep track of having done so. You can report this to the State Bar when it's time to demonstrate your compliance with the MCLE requirements.

Contact Us

Business Law Section
The State Bar of California
180 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94105-1639
FAX 415-538-2368