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Bar News - November 14, 2008

Judge Hicks Discusses Business Court at BOG Meeting

Board members mingle with members of the Bar from Grafton and Coos counties at the Hanover Inn following the Oct. 30 Board meeting held there.

On Oct. 30, 2008, the NHBA Board of Governors held its regular meeting at the Hanover Inn, and invited area Bar members to attend. Nearly a dozen Upper Valley attorneys attended the meeting and a brief reception following.

At the meeting, NH Supreme Court Associate Justice Gary Hicks spoke about the business docket for the Superior Court, created under recently passed legislation. Gov. Lynch, in his most recent call for judicial applicants, indicated he plans to appoint someone to the superior court bench who has specific interest and experience in business matters to fill the position.

Justice Hicks, in response to a question about the decision to devote specific resources to business matters, said he expects that a business court – modeled on the Delaware Court of Chancery – will speed the resolution of business disputes. Speeding the handling of those matters, he said, will alleviate the burden these cases place on other judges, thus ultimately speeding the resolution of all matters.

Justice Hicks also addressed questions of procedure for the new court. Currently, the business docket is expected to be administered in Merrimack County but changes in venue may be permitted if parties ask for the case to heard in a particular court, Hicks said.

In other matters, the Board appointed Vera Buck and Claudia Damon as NHBA appointees to the NH Legal Assistance Board of Directors for three-year terms.

The Board also voted to send a letter to members of the NH Congressional delegation to support a request that IOLTA accounts be included in Administration "temporary liquidity guarantee" (TLG) initiatives to extend unlimited FDIC insurance to non-interest-bearing accounts.

NHBA Executive Director Jeannine McCoy called to the Board’s attention a number of temporary or permanent rules changes that are included in the Supreme Court Rules Advisory Committee public hearing agenda for Dec. 10, 2008.

At the Board’s next meeting, scheduled for Dec. 4, 2008 at the Bar Center, there will be an update on alternative sentencing initiatives by Superior Court Judge Tina Nadeau and Cathy Green, the NHBA’s representative on the Sentencing Reform Commission.

An agenda for the NHBA Board of Governors is posted in advance at (login required).

If you are in doubt about the status of any meeting, please call the Bar Center at 603-224-6942 before you head out.

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