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Bar News - November 18, 2011

The Bar Association Speaks for the Profession

Legislative Monitoring, Advocacy

Within the confines of court decisions regarding permissible activity by a unified bar association, the NHBA Board of Governors and the Legislation Committee monitor proposed legislation of interest to the profession and the administration of justice. In a few selected cases, the Bar, based on a vote of the Board of Governors and with input from concerned members of the Bar or Sections, takes an advocacy position on legislation or funding issues.

Collaboration with the Courts, Executive Branch

Through the Committee on Cooperation with the Courts, Sections, periodic bench-bar meetings, and other venues and forums, the Bar communicates on behalf of the profession with all levels of our courts, state and federal. The Bar provides a central clearinghouse for the courts and for executive branch agencies to receive feedback on initiatives or problems.

Explaining the Law and Lawyers

The Bar Association regularly fields inquiries from local and national (and even international) news media, seeking expertise on specific NH legal issues. These queries are referred to attorneys with appropriate expertise or, in the case of profession-wide issues or NH Bar policy questions, to the Bar President as the official spokesperson. The NH Bar also solicits and coordinates Bar volunteers for public speaking engagements, produces public information materials on the law, and helps communicate how lawyers are contributing to their community through pro bono service and community involvement.

Providing Accountability

Through administration of the Public Protection Fund (PPF) established by Supreme Court Rule 55 and funded through member fees, the Bar Association enables the provision of some compensation to clients who have suffered losses due to rare instances of attorney theft. The PPF is a mechanism that demonstrates the professionís commitment to accountability. Also, the Bar Association operates the Dispute Resolution Committee, which provides attorneys and clients with a voluntary process for resolving disputes.

Liaison with Other Organizations, Professions

The Bar Association participates in ABA entities to communicate the voice of NH lawyers in national legal circles. The Bar Association also represents the profession as a whole in dealings with legal and other professional organizations on joint endeavors or communications.

Supreme Court Rule 42(9) requires all NH admitted attorneys to notify the Bar Association of any address change, home or office.

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