Volume 11, No. 21 | October 9, 2012


eye on ethics

Q: I think I may become a witness in my client’s own case. How do I handle this?

A: With certain limited exceptions, ER 3.7 generally prohibits attorneys from acting as advocate at trial when they are a necessary witness. Generally, this is not a type of conflict that imputes to other members of the law firm. See ER 3.7(b) for further details.



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Read our story about Wells Spicer, the judge who handled the mother of all high-profile cases.

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member news

Volunteer Attorneys Help Answer Consumer Questions on Wills and Trusts: Attorneys Bob Ciancola, Steve Evans, David Horowitz, Scott T. Jensen, Lynn Keeling, Bob Lord, Brian Starr, and Ronald G. Wilson volunteered for the State Bar of Arizona and 12 News' Lawyers on Call public service program on Tuesday, October 2. The eight volunteer attorneys answered an impressive 169 calls from consumers regarding estate planning, wills and trust issues. The State Bar would like to thank them and all volunteers who participate in our consumer outreach initiatives throughout the year.


In the news

Hacker Case Could Test Limits on Electronic Searches: More than a year after federal agents arrested 14 people accused in a cyberattack on PayPal, the high-profile prosecution has ground to a standstill over the handling of computers seized in the investigation. more»

Addition of 1,000 Jobs Makes September a Bounce-Back Month for Legal Sector: The legal sector's employment roller coaster ride continued last month as the industry added 1,000 jobs, according to preliminary data released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. more»

from the bar

The State Bar Offers Information on Prop 115: On November 6th, voters in Arizona will decide whether to change some portions of Merit Selection with their vote on Proposition 115. The State Bar of Arizona is one of the groups that negotiated the language of this referendum. Read more about the Bar's position and Proposition 115 here.

You Can Help Shape the Future of the Pinal County Judicial System: The State Bar Standing Appointments Committee is seeking applicants from all five of the newly established supervisory districts in Pinal County to fill five vacancies on the commission. Interested and qualified attorneys, regardless of their political party affiliation or where they reside within Pinal County, are encouraged to apply. more»

Maricopa County Notice of Public Hearing to Accept Comments on the Performance of its Commissioners: Pursuant to Rule 97 of the Arizona Supreme Court, the Hon. Norman J. Davis, Presiding Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court, will hold a public hearing on Thursday, October 18, 2012 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors Auditorium, 205 W. Jefferson, Phoenix, Arizona,  to accept comments from the public about the performance of its commissioners. more»

Keep Them Story Ideas Coming: Many of you have shared your stories of how and why you became an attorney and we're still seeking more! We want to know what makes you proud of being an Arizona attorney? Did you follow in your mother or father's footsteps? Did you face any obstacles? Was it a decision based on needing a career change? Whatever the case may be, we want you to share your story with us and be considered for an upcoming video campaign featuring a diverse group of State Bar members. Contact Alberto Rodriguez for more information.

Comparing Hate Speech in Europe and the United States: A debate between two internationally recognized experts on the law and philosophy of free speech will take place at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU on Friday, Oct. 26. "The Legal Response to Hate Speech: Should the U.S. be more like Europe?," will feature Professor Jeremy Waldron, of New York University and All Souls College, Oxford University, and author of the new book, The Harm in Hate Speech, and Professor James Weinstein, of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, and co-editor of Extreme Speech and Democracy. The event, free and open to the public, will begin at noon in the Great Hall of Armstrong Hall on ASU’s Tempe campus, and will be followed by a book-signing with Professor Waldron. more»

Save the Date for the Byron McCormick Society for Law and Public Affairs Lecture: Join the James E. Rogers College of Law as it hosts the 2012 Byron McCormick Society for Law and Public Affairs Lecture featuring Morris Dees, Founder and Chief Trial Attorney of the Southern Poverty Law Center. His lecture, "With Justice for All," will be held on Thursday, November 8. more»

Arizona State Law Journal Wants to Hear from You: Arizona has a reputation for controversial legislation like SB 1070, but Arizona has also made a number of other contributions to the legal landscape. The Journal is seeking contributors for its 2012-2013 Arizona Issue to focus on novel or innovative ways Arizona has treated social and legal issues. more»

Applications for the John R. Justice (JRJ) Student Loan Repayment Program Are Now Open:  The Administrative Office of the Courts is pleased to announce the approval of Arizona’s application for funding through the John R. Justice Program for fiscal year 2012.  The goal of the JRJ Program is to recruit and retain qualified prosecutors and public defenders by lessening the burden of student loan obligations.

Prosecutors and public defenders are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to be considered for awards under the JRJ Program.  Applications must be postmarked by Friday, October 26, 2012. more» 

court decisions

Arizona Court of Appeals
Division One
Division Two

September 11, 2012 - 1 CA-CV 11-0378 - Fields v. Oates
1.  When a judgment does not include Rule 54(b) language, is a notice of appeal filed while a motion for attorneys’ fees is pending a nullity under Craig v. Craig?  2.  When a claim for attorneys’ fees is the only outstanding issue after entry of an initial judgment resolving all other issues (but without Rule 54(b) certification), does entry of a signed order resolving the attorneys’ fees issue establish the date of entry of final judgment for purposes of appeal?  3.  When an initial final judgment was not timely appealed, does entry of a subsequent, identical judgment commence a new period of time for filing a notice of appeal? Read Opinion.

October 4, 2012 - 2 CA-CV 2012-0037 - Gorman v. Pima County
Whether the trial court erred by granting summary judgment to Pima County on plaintiffs’ breach of contract and estoppel claims based on its finding that: 1) the parties did not have an enforceable contract for the funding and construction of a county project; and, 2) the county was not estopped from denying any obligation to return the funds the plaintiffs had paid for the design and construction of the project. Read Opinion.

9th Circuit Court of Appeals

October 5, 2012 - 10-30072 - Read US v. Shoulder
Defendant's conviction for failing to comply with the sex offender registration requirements set forth in 42 U.S.C. section 16913 is affirmed where the Sex Offender Registration Notification Act violates neither the Ex Post Facto Clause nor defendant's constitutional right to due process, and Congress acted within its enumerated powers in enacting it. Read Opinion.

October 5, 2012 - 12-50042 - US v. Jones
District court's revocation of defendant's supervised release is vacated and remanded where, although the district court properly considered defendant's state criminal conviction as a felony, the district court included a written special condition of supervised release that the court did not include in its oral pronouncement of sentence. Read Opinion.


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