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  • Hold ’Em or Fold ’Em: Policing Texas Poker Rooms for Profit

    Despite a criminal statute banning gambling in Texas, approximately 30 establishments have taken advantage of perceived loopholes in the law to operate openly as private poker clubs. Until recently, there has been little pushback from law enforcement. Perhaps realizing the potential for lucrative seizures, several of these private clubs recently came under the scrutiny of...

  • TYLA Director Spotlight: Marcos Rosales

    Editor’s Note: In this blog series, we are getting to know the members of the Texas Young Lawyers Association Board of Directors. TYLA, commonly called the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas, works to facilitate the administration of justice, foster respect for the law, and advance the role of the legal profession in...

  • Jacqueline Rashawn Habersham named State Commission on Judicial Conduct executive director

    The State Commission on Judicial Conduct announced its new executive director, Jacqueline Rashawn Habersham, who has served on the commission for more than 18 years as both deputy general counsel and senior commission counsel, and for the last six months, interim executive director. Habersham received her juris doctorate in 1992 from the Thurgood Marshall School...

  • TexasBarCLE honors outstanding volunteers

    Four attorneys were honored for their exceptional contributions in 2019 to the State Bar of Texas’ continuing legal education efforts. TexasBarCLE gave Standing Ovation Awards to Jonathan J. Bates, of Dallas, and Robert Ford, Enid M. Howard, and Jeff Weems, of Houston. “All of our volunteers deserve our gratitude for contributing to the continuing education...

  • Scams continue to target Texas attorneys

    Update 2/20/20: Attorneys continue to receive the Compass Upstream Services scam emails.  A Maryland attorney received one from Harry Jones, and a Michigan attorney received one from Jacob Taylor. The email language is identical, with different names used for the vice president, customer, and bank on the check. 2/13/2020: Update 2 – A Tennessee attorney...

  • Houston lawyer honored for saving driver from drowning

    A Houston lawyer was recognized for his quick action and heroism that saved a motorist from drowning after the man’s car plunged into the Mustang Bayou in Missouri City earlier this month. John C. Greco is a partner in Williams, Birnberg & Andersen, LLP of Houston where he focuses on civil litigation, primarily personal injury,...

  • Texas high school students compete for mock trial state title

    More than 25 Texas high school teams will compete in the 41st annual Texas High School Mock Trial Competition at the George Allen Courthouse in Dallas March 6-7. Teams will argue a hypothetical civil court case written by local attorneys. The students will play the roles of plaintiffs and defense attorneys, as well as witnesses,...

  • TYLA to launch First Amendment educational website

    The Texas Young Lawyers Association, commonly called the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas, will launch Your Voice, Now!, an online learning platform aimed to educate students about student speech and their First Amendment rights, on April 1. The project—which includes educational videos from school law experts, school administrators, parents, and students—also...

  • Entries sought for local bar association awards

    The State Bar of Texas Local Bar Services Committee is now accepting local bar association submissions for the annual Stars of Texas Bars Awards and Judge Sam Williams Award. The Stars of Texas Bars Awards include eight award categories that recognize local bar associations for outstanding community involvement, commitment to increasing access to justice, and...

  • Deadline to enter 2020 Texas Gavel Awards approaching

    Do you know of a journalist deserving of recognition for excellence in reporting on legal issues? The State Bar of Texas Public Affairs Committee is accepting entries for the 2020 Texas Gavel Awards to recognize journalistic excellence that helps foster public understanding of the legal system, including investigative reporting that leads to improvements in the...

  • Free legal clinic for veterans in Conroe

    Veterans in need of legal assistance can attend a free clinic in Conroe on Saturday, February 22, from 9 a.m. to noon. The event will be held at the Conroe VA Outpatient Clinic, 690 S. Loop 336 W., 77304. Veterans and spouses of deceased veterans can receive one-on-one advice from a volunteer attorney in any...

  • Houston Bar Association fundraiser helps renovate elementary school library

    The Houston Bar Association Lawyers for Literary Committee teamed with the Houston Independent School District Department of Library Services and Weekley Family YMCA to remodel Charles Shearn Elementary School’s library. HBA President Benny Agosto Jr., HBA Lawyers for Literacy Chairs Alvin Adjei, Karan Ciotti, and Chanler Langham helped spearhead the initiative. Fundraising generated $30,000 from.

  • Keystone Bank joins Prime Partner Bank Program

    Keystone Bank, with branches in Austin, Ballinger, and Bee Cave, has joined the Texas Access to Justice Foundation’s Prime Partner Program. Prime Partner banks and credit unions voluntarily pay higher interest rates on attorneys’ IOLTA accounts. The Texas Access to Justice Foundation, receives funding from the interest generated by these accounts and uses the money...

  • Committee seeks public comment on proposed ethics opinions

    The Professional Ethics Committee for the State Bar of Texas is accepting public comments on another proposed ethics opinion. Proposed Opinion 20-3, which is open for comment through April 10, concerns the following: When a lawyer retained under a contingent fee agreement withdraws from the representation due to a nonconsentable conflict of interest discovered shortly after...

  • Attorneys: Share your tips with February 2020 bar exam takers

    The February 2020 Texas Bar Exam to be held February 25-27 is fast approaching, and aspiring attorneys are buckling down for the final stretch. This being such a stressful event, we decided we’d reach out to attorneys who have already leapt over the bar and ask for tips on what helped in the days and...

  • TYLA Director Spotlight: Lauren Renee Sepulveda

    Editor’s Note: In this blog series, we are getting to know the members of the Texas Young Lawyers Association Board of Directors. TYLA, commonly called the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas, works to facilitate the administration of justice, foster respect for the law, and advance the role of the legal profession in...

  • State Bar of Texas Native American Law Section celebrates culture with traditional dances

    Native American dancers performed traditional dances on February 7 at the Texas Law Center in Austin during the State Bar of Texas Native American Law Section’s annual conference. Conference attendees were treated to demonstrations of the Grass, Stomp, and Fancy dances before being invited to join the performers in a Circle dance. Music performed on...

  • Houston Bar Association Auxiliary hosts chili and pie cook-off

    The Houston Bar Association Auxiliary in partnership with the Houston Bar Association and Houston Young Lawyers Association, will host its 6th annual Chili and Pie Cook-off from 5 to 9 p.m. on February 15 at the Bayou City Events Center Pavilion. The cook-off welcomes members of the Houston legal community to vie for the best...

  • Texas Bar Journal Must-Reads for February

    Check out our highlights from the February issue of the Texas Bar Journal. And don’t forget to catch up on Disciplinary Actions, Movers and Shakers, and Memorials. Slicker Than a Boiled Onion What Texas lawyers need to know about data privacy, the GDPR, and the CCPA. By Kathryne “Kate” M. Morris Technology: Using Your Mind?...

  • St. Mary’s University hosts 26th People’s Law School

    St. Mary’s University is celebrating the 26th year of the People’s Law School, which provides free education by local attorneys on legal topics such as identity theft, wills, and Social Security, on February 15. The project is a joint effort by St. Mary’s University School of Law’s Pro Bono Program and the San Antonio Bar...

  • State Bar Paralegal Division elects President-elect Susi Boss

    Susi Boss, a senior paralegal with Higdon, Hardy & Zuflacht, was elected president-elect of the State Bar of Texas Paralegal Division on January 31. Boss first joined the division in 2003 and serves as parliamentarian on the Executive Board in addition to being a District 5 director. She is also parliamentarian of the San Antonio...

  • In Memoriam – January 2020

    The State Bar of Texas’ Membership Department was informed in January 2020 of the deaths of these members. We join the officers and directors of the State Bar in expressing our deepest sympathy. • Ralph Alvarez, 54, of Houston, died December 22, 2019. He received his law degree from Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School...

  • Annual Statistical Report for the Texas Judiciary FY 2019 has been released

    The Office of Court Administration, the Texas Judiciary, and the Texas Judicial Council have released the Annual Statistical Report for the Texas Judiciary Fiscal Year 2019 with data from every level of court. Highlights from the 2019 report include: • Civil filings in district and county courts increased in nearly every category with debt cases...

  • Free legal clinic for veterans in Galveston

    The Galveston County Bar Association and the Houston Bar Foundation’s Veterans Legal Initiative are sponsoring a free legal clinic for veterans on Saturday, February 8, from 9 a.m. to noon. Veterans and spouses of deceased attorneys can receive one-on-one advice and counsel from volunteer attorneys in family law, wills and probate, consumer law, real estate...

  • TYLA Director Spotlight: Matt Manning

    Editor’s Note: In this blog series, we are getting to know the members of the Texas Young Lawyers Association Board of Directors. TYLA, commonly called the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas, works to facilitate the administration of justice, foster respect for the law, and advance the role of the legal profession in...

  • Timely filing deadline extended for July 2020 bar exam

    The Texas Board of Law Examiners announced today that due to technical problems with its website, the timely filing deadline for the July 2020 Texas Bar Exam has been extended to 11:59 p.m. February 3. No late fees will be assessed for applications submitted by that time.

  • Stories of Recovery: Solving the problem of me

    “Lately it occurs to me — What a long strange trip it’s been.” — The Grateful Dead Editor’s note: This post was originally published on August 22, 2014. Editor’s note: TLAP offers confidential assistance for lawyers, law students, and judges with substance use or mental health issues. Call TLAP at 1-800-343-8527 (TLAP), text TLAP to...

  • DVAP hosts free legal clinics for Dallas County residents in February

    The Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program, an initiative of the Dallas Bar Association and Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas, is hosting 7 free legal clinics for county residents who meet financial guidelines. The clinics, which will be held throughout February, will offer legal advice and consultation in civil matters. Applicants are asked to bring proof of...

  • Porter Hedges donation benefits University of Houston Law Center expansion

    A contribution from Port Hedges will support the University of Houston Law Center’s newly planned John M. O’Quinn Law Building, slated for construction this summer. The law school’s career services office will also rename to the Porter Hedges LLP Career Services Center. “Porter Hedges is proud to support the UH Law Center and excited to...

  • Two proposed ethics opinions open for public comment

    The Professional Ethics Committee for the State Bar of Texas is accepting public comments on two proposed ethics opinions through March 27.  The first proposed opinion deals with (1) whether a staff lawyer employed by an insurance company to defend its insureds must comply with the company’s guidelines regarding the defense of such cases, and (2) what...

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