Bar News - March 16, 2016
Section Connection: Bar Members Extol Benefits of NHBA Section Membership
By: Patty Frechette
Join or Renew Now at No Cost
NHBA members can test out section membership from now through the end of May and pay no section fee until June when annual Bar dues invoices are sent out. Section membership brings many valuable benefits. Contact Sections Coordinator Patty Frechette, (603) 715-3257 for more information or to sign up.
New Lawyers. Bar members admitted in or after March 2016 are eligible for free section membership through May 2017. New lawyer sign-up form.
Renew for 2016-2017. If you are currently a section member and want to renew your membership for the coming year, remember to add the annual section fee to the total before remitting your Bar dues payment in June. If paying online, be sure the box is checked for the sections you are renewing or adding. Questions? Contact Susan Belair in the NHBA accounting department.
As we move through the last quarter of the 2015-2016 membership year, the NH Bar Association’s substantive law sections will be holding their year-end meetings, wrapping up another productive year of accomplishments and activities. At these meetings, the sections will also hold annual elections for chair, vice chair and clerk of their respective groups.
With more than 20 sections covering a variety of practice areas from ADR to Health Law to Workers’ Comp, the Bar Association offers a medley of opportunities for members to strengthen their skills, gain in-depth knowledge in specific practice areas, and make connections.
Many of the sections are active on a regular basis, and this year has been no exception. More than 50 section meetings and events have taken place since June 2015, and these activities have supported and engaged hundreds of Bar members. Benefits afforded by active participation in a section include:
- Professional growth and development opportunities (roundtables, speaker presentations, CLEs)
- A way to stay connected with colleagues in a specific field of practice or area of interest (meetings, social events, CLEs, email lists)
- Knowledge-sharing, skills-strengthening (focused practice area updates, legislative and case law updates, roundtable forums and more)
- And opportunities to give back (share professional experiences with multiple generations of lawyers).
Members and officers offer the followinviews of their overall section experiences:
“I think there is great value in keeping connected with other practitioners. And I don’t mean for bottom-line referral purposes. I think the greatest value is in sharing experiences, imparting advice, and hearing about different perspectives and points of view on topics and issues that we all come across. It also makes the practice of law more enjoyable and rewarding when you build connections with the people who will be your allies and/or adversaries in the future. Being a member or officer of a bar section will encourage you to maintain those connections even when you feel too busy to do so.”
– Dan Deane
“In my view, the section meetings have been helpful to learn new things and to stay abreast of changes in the laws impacting our practice areas. It is highly beneficial to have as many new and seasoned (and everything in between) members participate in meetings. It offers a greater diversity of perspectives, particularly as it relates to the practical aspects of our evolving practices.”
– Geoff Ransom
“For me, the sections have been a great way to transition into new areas of law. Membership is particularly important as a solo because I have no mentorship or built-in referral network. The section membership is an alternative to a mentor, because it allows me to be a fly on the wall in conversations among experienced lawyers. I religiously read the list serve to get a sense of the hot issues. If I see a term or case that I haven’t come across before, I pop it into Lexis and familiarize myself with the relevant concepts. This makes self-study much easier because it’s not entirely self-directed.
Through the meetings, I get to form relationships with others interested in at least one common area of law. If they have cases they can’t handle or don’t want to handle, they have me in mind. That helps me build my practice without competition. Also, I get referrals in areas that they don’t handle.”
– Jared Bedrick
“I enjoy being involved with the Bar sections because it keeps me in touch with other attorneys in my area of practice. As a litigator, I am typically in an adversarial position when I am talking to other lawyers, so having prior contact with counsel on something collaborative is useful when trying to work through the difficult issues that come up in litigation.”
– Ned Sackman