Volume 13, No. 20 | September 30, 2014

eye on ethics

Q: Do I have an ethical obligation to report my own criminal conviction to the State Bar?

A: Yes, if it is a felony or misdemeanor involving a serious crime. See Rule 54(g) and Rule 61(c)(1), Ariz. R. Sup. Ct.


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Judicial Inconsistency
Are amendments to pleadings granted too often? Is that welcome, or does it lead to uncertainty and higher costs?

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member news

Governor Jan Brewer Hands Judgeship to Her Top Lawyer: Gov. Jan Brewer has appointed her top in-house lawyer as a superior court judge in Maricopa County. The governor's announcement that she appointed Joseph Sciarrotta Jr. as a judge comes less than four months before she leaves office. Sciarrotta expects to take the bench early next year. more�

Judge Janet Barton to Become Presiding Judge for Maricopa County: The Arizona Supreme Court has appointed the Honorable Janet Barton to a three-year term as Presiding Judge for the Superior Court in Maricopa County. She will begin serving as Presiding Judge on July 1, 2015. In the interim, she will be working alongside Presiding Judge Norman Davis to ensure a smooth transition in July. more�

In the news

Novartis Ordered to Face U.S. Lawsuit Over Doctor Kickbacks: A federal judge said Novartis AG must face a U.S. government lawsuit accusing the Swiss drugmaker of paying multimillion-dollar kickbacks, including a $9,750 dinner for three at a Japanese restaurant, to induce doctors to prescribe its drugs. more�

Jury Selection to Begin in Arias Penalty Phase Retrial in Arizona: Jury selection began in Arizona on Monday to decide whether convicted murderer Jodi Arias will be executed for the 2008 slaying of her ex-boyfriend in a case that drew a national audience with its titillating and gore-spattered testimony. more�

Supreme Court Meets to Consider Taking Gay Marriage Cases: The nine justices of the U.S. Supreme Court met behind closed doors on Monday to consider whether they should take up the hotly contested question of whether states can ban gay marriage. more�

from the bar

Help Your Friends and Family Finish the November Ballot: The November election is just weeks away and soon your friends and family will be asking you the same question they ask every election, "How should I vote for the judges on the ballot?" We want to help, so this election we've come up with a way for you to answer that question. Watch our Finish the Ballot video and share it with your friends and family. We also have a fun way to promote our Finish the Ballot campaign with our Instagram "Finish the Ballot" contest where you'll have chance to win $250. more�

Major Medical Coverage Available Through State Bar of Arizona: This Health Insurance Exchange can help provide members, their employees, and families with comprehensive major medical insurance coverage. The program is brought to you by AHIX, a division of JLBG Health, the largest health insurance provider to associations in the US. more�

New Voluntary Training Program: The CLE Institute is a new voluntary development program designed for attorneys interested in becoming better CLE presenters. The Institute offers practical instruction and tips on a variety of topics � all with the goal of improving your presentation skills! Class size is limited. The application deadline has been extended to Friday, October 3. Please click here to download the brochure and application.

Professional Volunteer Positions Just Posted: Apply to serve on DNA-People's Legal Services, Inc. Board of Directors or on one of the four Judicial Nominating Commissions. For candidate criteria and the respective November application deadlines click here.

Comment on Proposed Child Support Schedule by Friday: The Arizona Supreme Court is nearing the end of a mandatory review of child support case files and calculations. The analysis of case files and updating of the economic data for the schedule that are attached to the child support calculator featured on the courts' website has been completed. The reports can be viewed here. This now opens the public comment period, which concludes on October 9. more�

Judicial Performance Review Commission Announces Official Performance Ratings for Judges: The Arizona Judicial Performance Review (JPR) Commission has released its official findings on judicial performance for each judge whose name will appear on the General Election Ballot. Voters can find detailed information in the Secretary of State's Publicity Pamphlet, which is mailed to each voting household, or by visiting www.azjudges.info.

Prosecutors and Public Defenders Encouraged to Apply JRJ Grant Program: The Administrative Office of the Courts is pleased to announce the approval of Arizona's application for funding through the John R. Justice Program. The goal of the JRJ Program is to recruit and retain qualified prosecutors and public defenders by lessening the burden of student loan obligations. The Bureau of Justice Assistance has authorized a funding allotment of $34,273 to Arizona for this program. Applications must be postmarked by Friday, October 31, 2014. Information about eligibility, the application process and required materials can be found here on the Arizona Judicial Branch website.

Important Changes to the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration Governing Court Reporters: The Arizona Supreme Court release proposed amendments to the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration governing court reporting. A Task Force was appointed to evaluate the proposed amendments, receive input on concerns, and make final recommendations regarding amending the code. Read the Supreme Court Order that was entered on May 21, 2014 and effective on September 15, 2014 by clicking here.

Public Asked for Input on Candidates For Superior Court Vacancy: The Maricopa County Commission on Trial Court Appointments is seeking public input on 13 candidates for an opening on the Maricopa County Superior Court. The candidates are: Julie Ashworth LaFave, Theodore Campagnolo, Geoffrey Fish, Dewain Fox, Jennifer Green, Stephen Hopkins, Brian Kaiser, Edith Lucero, Rachel Mitchell, Bernard Owens, Carolyn Passamonte, Eric Rothblum, and Shellie Smith. Citizens may address the Commission about any of the candidates on October 16, 2014, at 8:30 a.m. more�

Governor Brewer Announces Judicial Vacancy in Navajo County: Governor Jan Brewer today has begun accepting applications for a vacant judicial position on the Navajo County Superior Court. The governor's appointment will replace Judge John Lamb, whose retirement is effective January 2, 2015. Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on October 24, 2014. more�

Arizona Gears Up to Host National Asian Pacific American Bar Association Annual Conference: The 26th Annual NAPABA Convention will be held in Phoenix/Scottsdale from November 6-9, 2014. The conference will attract over 1,500 Asian Pacific American (APA) attorneys, including general counsel of Fortune 1000 companies, federal and state judges, and law professors from across the country. The convention, themed "Convergence: Collaborating for a Grand Tomorrow," will feature programming that celebrates the diversity and unity of NAPABA. You can register now by clicking here.

Join the Arizona Black Bar at Their 2014 Scholarship Award Dinner: The Arizona Black Bar is hosting the 2014 Hayzel B. Daniels Scholarship Award Dinner on Thursday, October 16, from 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. at the Phoenix Art Museum. Connie Rice, co-founder of the Advancement Project will provide the keynote address at the event themed, "Civil Rights 2014 � Closing the Opportunity Gap and Building Coalitions." Tickets are $125 and can be purchased via PayPal by sending an email to arizonablackbar@gmail.com